What has happened to Wilfried Zaha?
It has been a question repeated by Manchester United fans all season. The young English winger was Sir Alex Ferguson’s final official piece of business as manager of the club and ended his season back on loan at Crystal Palace with six goals and ten assists, a good return for a 20-year old winger. His good work culminated in Crystal Palace earning promotion to the Premier League.
But for Zaha, the best part surely is yet to come. Having starred in a period of the 2013 tour, Zaha played a bit-role in the Community Shield success. Since then, he has vanished – yet to appear off the substitutes bench.
For someone who was able to almost single handedly get his team promoted and not play a minute of Premier League football despite such a promising pre-season is absurd, especially given the fact that United’s wingers have (on the whole) offered little for United going forward.
Building on from that, Zaha is wanted on loan by many Premier League clubs as he can’t get a game. Besides English clubs, Serie A Champions Juventus were linked with him the other day.
“He is so unique. He is an untouched, pure talent. I’ve never worked with anyone like him – he just wants to get the ball and beat people.” Ian Holloway
All he needs is an opportunity, a time to shine, and that should be on Tuesday against Norwich City in the Capital One Cup.
The League Cup was a competition throughout the Ferguson era whereby young stars were blooded. Having been unable to show that in the previous cup-tie against Liverpool, Norwich would be a perfect place for a boy with a point to prove.
A much changed team from the one that faced Liverpool back in September is necessary and with a point to prove to David Moyes, Zaha will be raring to go. If he wants to make it at Old Trafford, he’ll need to be ready when called upon on Tuesday in front of 75,000 fans. He has shown his raw ability in pre-season but now is his real test – chances will come far and few between, he needs to take his when it comes.
He has matured significantly from the man who Sir Alex splashed £15 million on last January and will surely have a chance to prove himself this week. Given the need to rest players, Moyes will most likely play Zaha and Young on the wings – both have something to prove to Moyes.
Do you think Wilfried Zaha should start against Norwich City?