Wilfried Zaha has now officially made the decision to switch his international allegiance from England to the Ivory Coast, a choice which has prompted a beautifully written feature from The Telegraph’s Jonathan Liew.
It often feels as though Palace fans everywhere are fighting are losing battle whenever we sing Zaha’s praises in a public setting, given the ill-informed garbage that was spewed out by the media throughout the winger’s time in the North West of England. Clearly, the assumptions made about a player’s character whilst at a “big club” stick like glue forever more, a fact that has blinded thousands of fans to the outrageous talent that Zaha has always possessed.
Having seen the likes of Nathaniel Clyne and Victor Moses come through our academy ranks in recent years, it’s fair to say that the Eagles faithful are more than capable of spotting a star when they see one and in the case of Zaha, we have potentially got the best of the lot still on our books.
Whilst his lack of “end product” had provided the wider media with a handy stick with which to beat him over the head recent seasons, the current campaign has seen him cruise into the upper echelons of the Premier League charts for assists, alongside his now regular spot at the summit of the league’s best dribblers.
His supposed immaturity whilst away on England U21 duty some years ago is often cited as one of the biggest black marks against his name when it came to deliberations over a call-up to the full squad but in their lack of haste, the FA have now lost him forever; a blunder that Liew does a glorious job of lambasting in the piece featured at the top of this page.
To delve too deeply into the exact perspective that is offered in the feature would be to take away from its overarching point. Suffice to say, in a media landscape that has all too often reached for the well-worn cliches in relation to Zaha’s career, the aforementioned article does a wonderful job of highlighting the opposite side of the argument.