Barcelona are reportedly interested in acquiring the services of Crystal Palace forward Wilfried Zaha, who has been heavily linked with a move to Chelsea and Arsenal on a free transfer next summer.
Zaha, 29, has been a talisman for the Eagles over the past eight seasons, helping them consolidate their stature as a mid-table Premier League outfit. Overall, the Ivory Coast international has netted 88 goals and laid out 74 assists in 441 games for his current club.
A pacy dribbler blessed with flair and directness, Zaha has opened the ongoing season on a positive note. So far, he has netted five goals and contributed one assist in 11 Premier League starts.
As per the Evening Standard, Barcelona are prepared to explore a move for Zaha at the end of the 2022-23 campaign. The top brass at Camp Nou are said to be admirers of the versatile attacker’s directness and finishing and consider him a good fit at their club. Juventus are also said to be interested in signing the player on a Bosman move.
However, Barcelona are set to face fierce competition from Chelsea and Arsenal for the signature of Zaha. Both Premier League clubs are said to be able to outbid the Blaugrana in terms of wages.
Crystal Palace, on the other hand, are understood to have approached the former Manchester United man with a verbal offer regarding a new contract.
441 and counting.
@wilfriedzaha moves into third place in the all-time Palace appearance list
Wilfried Zaha tipped to shine elsewhere amid Barcelona, Chelsea and Arsenal links
Speaking to talkSPORT, former Crystal Palace captain Mile Jedinak has backed Zaha to succeed at another club amid interest from Barcelona, Chelsea and Arsenal. He said:
“He is Palace through and through, but it is not taking away Wilfried’s ambition or anything like that. I know how much he cares about the football club, and I remember him as a young 19-year-old when he first came on.”
Jedinak, who represented the Eagles between 2011 and 2016, recalled his early experiences with the Ivorian and added:
“First training session he put one through my legs, I didn’t let him go past, and I just thought, ‘Ok, this is what I need to expect now.’ Just enthusiastic, and someone you knew on a matchday you just knew he would go and do anything to win the game for you.”
He also tipped Zaha to thrive elsewhere and concluded:
“You needed to nurture that and encourage that, and I wouldn’t say do anything differently, but to understand that. Does that mean he can’t go and do it somewhere else? Absolutely, he could. I get it will be something people will be monitoring.”
Apart from Barcelona, Chelsea and Arsenal are considered to be ideal destinations for the forward considering his Premier League experience.
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