Wilfried Zaha has told Crystal Palace he wants to leave the club
Last Updated: 16/05/19 12:03pm
Crystal Palace forward Wilfried Zaha has told the club he wants to leave this summer.
Sky Sports News understands Palace are reluctant to sell the winger but he has reiterated his desire to play Champions League football.
Zaha, who scored 10 goals in an impressive 2018-19 Premier League campaign, is keen to test himself at the highest level of club football and start regularly challenging for trophies.
The 26-year-old failed to make any impact in a previous spell with Manchester United, after joining them from Palace for £15m in 2013, and he ended up back at Selhurst Park for a cut-price fee in February 2015.
However, Zaha feels he is ready for the challenge of representing a leading club and explained in an exclusive interview with the Daily Mail in April that he has more to offer.
"I have to experience the Champions League. I just need the opportunity, that's it. And I'll do the rest," he said.
"I'm too ambitious. And not ambitious just to play for a top club, but to win things at club level and with the Ivory Coast.
"For me to be better, to achieve what I know I am capable of, I have to aim to play at the very highest level, to win trophies.
"I'm blessed to have come this far in my playing career. But I feel like there is so much more I have to offer."
Borussia Dortmund made inquiries into Zaha during the January transfer window, having identified him as a potential replacement for Christian Pulisic.
Zaha signed a new deal with Palace until 2023 last August and reports last summer claimed the Eagles valued Zaha at £70m.
Why Zaha is vital for Palace
Zaha's importance to Palace cannot be understated. He is a talismanic figure for the club having first joined them at the age of 12. Since returning to Selhurst Park from Manchester United in 2015, he has developed into one of the best players outside the Premier League's top six.
Over the last three campaigns, the 26-year-old has scored more Premier League goals (26) and provided more assists (17) than any other Crystal Palace player. Ten of those goals came this season, and a closer look at the statistics underlines his importance even further.
Zaha ranked second in the Premier League for successful dribbles and fouls won behind only Chelsea's Eden Hazard. Despite playing mostly on the left flank, he also ranked fourth for touches in the opposition box - above Sergio Aguero and behind only Hazard, Raheem Sterling and Mohamed Salah.
That attacking threat is invaluable for Palace and also explains why Zaha is a man in-demand.