Having had a revealing interview published in a number of national newspapers on Saturday morning, Wilfried Zaha put a smile on his manager’s face with his performance against Manchester United.
After lifting the lid on the deep sense of frustration he felt throughout his brief and ultimately doomed stint at Old Trafford, the winger responded in the best way possible a few hours later; giving the visiting Reds a torrid time for the entirety of 90 minutes in SE25.
Pardew has made no secret of his desire to see Wilf kick on and reach his full potential under his guidance, giving him one or two well timed kicks up the backside since arriving in January, but last weekend, there was no need for the manager to verbally dig out the Palace academy man.
Clearly keen to impress against his former employers for obvious reasons, the wide man challenged his covering full-back regularly, with Van Gaal’s decision to make a switch late on acting as proof of the fine work done by Wilfried throughout the game.
Thankfully, Pardew reserved a special and much deserved individual mention for Zaha in his post-match musings, which, on a day that will have undoubtedly meant a great deal to the man himself, was a very classy touch from the Palace boss.
After seeing a much improved attacking display against United in comparison to recent weeks, you would assume that Pardew will stick with the same offensive players for our trip to Anfield this weekend, in the hope of further encouraging the sense of confidence that will have been sparked by our collective efforts against Van Gaal’s title challengers.
It’s certainly great to see Pardew and Zaha back on the same wavelength after a spell of uncertainty behind the scenes, it’s been a long time coming.