Wilfried Zaha has given his first interview to the press since deciding to swap international allegiances from England to the Ivory Coast, with the Palace winger adamantly stating that he was right to leave the Three Lions behind.
After deliberating over his international future for a number of years, Wilf finally decided to switch to the Elephants when being made aware of their serious interest in him ahead of the upcoming African Cup of Nations, a tournament which gets underway on the 16th of this month.
Having been left twiddling his thumbs by the England set-up after initially being given his debut by Roy Hodgson in 2012, Zaha understandably grew tired of waiting for a call-up. Internal politics and narrow views almost certainly played a part in England’s decision to continually ignore the winger in favour of other less deserving candidates, leading him to the point where the admiring glances from his native land could no longer be ignored.
Whilst some still maintain a scpetical outlook when pressed for their view on Wilfried’s ability, his first foray onto the international stage for the Ivory Coast brought a beautifully weighted assist inside his first five minutes on the field during a friendly against Sweden, setting the scene for the Palace man to play a pivotal role in the country’s AFCON campaign over the coming weeks.
Contrary to the widely held belief of many who still judge Zaha by the far-fetched stories that emerged from his time at Manchester United, his personality is one of both humility and tremendous personal strength, further emboldened by the birth of his first child in 2016. As the above interview proves, Wilf is a man who is now more comfortable than ever in his own skin; happy to embrace each and every new challenge that comes his way.