Crystal Palace winger Wilfried Zaha insists defenders double up on him
By Pete Hall
Last Updated: 06/02/16 5:15pm
Crystal Palace winger Wilfried Zaha believes defenders "double up" on him in a bid to nullify his threat, especially in the absence of Yannick Bolasie.
After an impressive start to this campaign, Alan Pardew's men have fallen away in recent weeks, and are without a league win in seven games, stretching back to mid-December.
Goals have been in short supply, with the Eagles having found the net just twice in that seven-game winless run.
Bolasie's injury lay-off has been detrimental to their plight and, in an interview with Soccer Saturday, Zaha believes that Bolasie's absence has meant opponents have been able to focus on just him, rather than the potent pair.
"Me and Yannick [Bolasie] give teams a hard time on both wings," Zaha said. "But now, teams tend to double up just on me, because I am the only outball sometimes - the only one who will take people on - so it has been hard without him. He'll be back soon, so we'll be back to doing what we do.
"The manager has not changed my game. He has just added to it with the defensive side really, and showed me how important it is. Me blocking a full-back's cross can win us the game.
"It is important as me crossing the ball for a winner. In attack, he has just told me to do what I do."
The Eagles' form has seen them drop into the bottom half of the Premier League table, with doubts emerging over whether lack of firepower could see them dragged into a relegation battle.
The arrival of Emmanuel Adebayor will aid their cause, and with some other talented players in the ranks, Zaha is convinced the club will turn things around.
"We just need to keep faith really. Adebayor has come in, and he has got goals in him," Zaha said. "I am not scared about anything, and I am sure we will start scoring goals soon enough.
We just need to keep faith really. Adebayor has come in, and he has got goals in him.
"I spoke to him [Adebayor] and he is a nice guy. He trained with us and as soon as he touched the ball, I could see the quality that he has, and I am looking forward to playing with him.
"The thing I appreciate most about the gaffer [Pardew] is that he gives me loads of feedback. He won't hold back if I am not doing well and I don't mind that. I'd rather be told if I am not doing well.
"The injuries haven't helped. But that's why I am not really scared, as the players we have, the quality that is here, we can get back up there."
Watch the full interview on Soccer Saturday, live on Sky Sports News HQ, from 12pm