This Saturday evening, Wilfried Zaha will get the chance to secure a place in next summer’s World Cup finals in Russia when taking on Morocco in a must-win game for the Ivory Coast.
I would like to say thank you to my people for the amazing welcome last night. Honestly feels so good to be back ❤🇨🇮🤙🏿 pic.twitter.com/sIUW53vwUK
— Wilfried Zaha (@wilfriedzaha) November 7, 2017
Having already received a hero’s welcome when getting off the plane, Zaha will now take on the role of the team’s star man this weekend, hoping that he can help his teammates to a victory which would mean the world to the nation of his birth.
Luckily, Wilf is already used to being seen as his team’s talisman, having put Palace on his shoulders and scored gigantic goals for us in recent seasons but at international level, glory is still something he’s waiting to sample. With 45,000 people in attendance this weekend, the majority of whom will be full of nerves, it’ll be up to Zaha to keep his head but from what we can see, it’s a challenge that the 24-year-old is really relishing.
Plenty of England fans have been seen to suggest that the winger “turned his back on his country” by opting to represent the Ivory Coast, conveniently forgetting that Wilf was in fact born there before moving to the UK as a child. Having been shunned by the Three Lions set-up for years, this is a true homecoming for a player who deserves to be treasured rather than ignored.
We can’t start banging the drum too loudly just yet, given the fact that the Ivory Coast need to take all three points against Morocco to be sure of a place out in Russia next summer but if Wilf does indeed get the chance to show what he can do at a World Cup, I’d back him to take it all completely in his stride. Time and again he’s shown himself to be a big game player in red and blue; this weekend, he gets the chance to replicate that at international level. I’ll be watching and I dare say you will be too.
Ivory Coast v Morocco will be live on BT Sport 3 this Saturday at 5:15pm