Wilfried Zaha says Crystal Palace stay a 'no brainer'
Watch Palace vs Watford live on Sky Sports Premier League on Sunday from 12.30pm
Last Updated: 24/08/18 2:20pm
Wilfried Zaha says staying at Crystal Palace was a "no brainer" after he recently signed a new five-year deal at Selhurst Park.
After another superb season, speculation was rife that Zaha would be moving during the summer transfer window with Borussia Dortmund rumoured to be interested.
However, the Ivory Coast international soon dismissed those rumours by putting pen-to-paper on a new five-year deal with Palace and said there was no doubt in his mind that he would stay.
"There was no real rush for me to move to another team", he told Alex Scott ahead of Sunday's live clash with Watford on Sky Sports.
"All the speculation, I never said anything, I just kept my head down, playing football and I feel like it's the right thing to do. I'm at home here and I'm playing football regularly, I'm enjoying my football so it was a no brainer.
"Why do I really need to move? That's what I thought about and I thought 'why not stay put?' I'm playing in the Premier League, I'm happy, I'm near my family so there was no real reason to leave.
"I feel like I'm mentally much stronger. I can deal with a lot more. With the way my career has gone, I've had ups and downs and I'm thankful for going through what I've gone through because now I'm a stronger person.
"I can deal with the media, I can deal with some of the criticism I get and still focus on what I need to do."
Zaha grew up near Selhurst Park after moving to the UK from the Ivory Coast at the age of four, and came through the Palace youth system before breaking into the first team.
Manager Roy Hodgson has recently said Zaha can become an "icon" for the club and the player himself believes his local connections have an influence over his relationship with the fans.
"I just try to do what I can for the team. I feel like the reason that I have that bond with the fans is because I'm from here," he added.
"I've seen the club come from zero to what they are now. I've seen the amount of sponsors we've gone through, some unknown sponsors to Puma now and just how everything has changed.
"I can relate to a lot of it so it's nice to hear things like that from the gaffer. I just try to keep doing what I'm doing."
Palace take on Watford live on Renault Super Sunday, with Zaha one goal shy of becoming the club's leading Premier League goalscorer, but he is not focusing too much on the milestone.
He said: "I'm going to try, but I'm also going to try and not think about it too much because when you try and score too much, it doesn't go for you so I'm trying to let things flow and if it happens, it happens."