Crystal Palace’s Wilfried Zaha may well be on the move this summer; the Ivory Coast winger-cum-forward has outright stated that he wants to be playing Champions League football, and despite reportedly having 4 years left on his contract with the Eagles, it sounds like it’s going to be tricky for Roy Hodgson’s side to keep him at Selhurst Park.
One side that has been rumoured to be in the chase for Zaha’s signature are Manchester United, who are looking to rejuvenate their squad after a massively disappointing season. For those who’ve forgotten, of course, Zaha has already been at Old Trafford once; he moved there in the summer of 2013 but the move didn’t go to plan at all for him, and just a year later he was back at Palace.
So should Zaha try moving to United again? For me at least it’d be a bad idea – and here are 3 reasons why.
#1 He’d come off as a hypocrite
It’d be hard to really claim that Zaha hasn’t earned a move to a bigger club than Crystal Palace with his performances over the past couple of seasons; the Ivorian international has been the Eagles’ most outstanding player and was once again involved with the most Premier League goals at Palace this season.
Sure, he’s on a hefty contract at Selhurst Park; reportedly a weekly wage of somewhere around £130,000, a club record for Palace, but money doesn’t necessarily buy happiness, even in the world of football. So realistically, it’s unsurprising that Zaha would want to test himself against the very best, and also play alongside the very best, too.
That’s why reports recently claimed that he’s had talks about leaving with Palace chairman Steve Parish, and apparently stated outright that he wants to move somewhere that can offer him Champions League football next season.
Manchester United, though? The Red Devils haven’t qualified for the Champions League after finishing 6th in the league table, and to be quite frank, even when they were on a run of strong form in the early days of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s reign, it never really seemed likely that they’d muscle their way into the top 4.
Only a fool would claim that United aren’t a bigger club than Crystal Palace, but the bottom line is that they can’t offer Zaha Champions League football in 2019/20, and there’s no guarantee they’d be able to offer it to him in 2020/21 either.
After stating outright that Champions League football is his wish, to move to Old Trafford would make him come across as hypocritical, something that wouldn’t be good for any player.