Wilfried Zaha’s agent may have just earnt the Palace player the sort of pay rise he was seeking.
Steve Parish, the Crystal Palace chairman, last night dismissed the Tottenham transfer offer for the player as “ridiculous”.
“We’ve told Spurs that there is really no point bidding for him because he is going nowhere – 100 per cent guaranteed,” Parish said.
Speaking on a late-night TalkSport radio programme, Parish said that the offer for Zaha, who had submitted a formal transfer request on Thursday morning, was for £12 million, not the £15 million first reported.
“We had a bid from Spurs but £12 million – it’s ridiculous. I can’t imagine that they’re serious,” Parish said.
“There’s no chance whatsoever of Wilfried Zaha leaving the club in this transfer window. I can absolutely reassure every Palace fan he is an integral part of our plans.
Parish suggested that he felt that the transfer request and low-ball bid from Spurs may have been part of a negotiating approach over Zaha’s contract talks. “It’s not right really that players get their heads turned,” Parish said.
“I was told that the manager there thinks he’s the next Ronaldo. Well, I’d like to get the next Ronaldo for £12 million.
“We need to convince Wilfried that Palace is the right place for him and that he can succeed here. I decide who leaves and he’s not leaving. He’ll have to get his head around that,” Parish said.
With contract negotiations still ongoing with the 23-year-old England international, such statements from Parish in the face of interest from a Champions League club should place the player’s agents in a stronger negotiating position in the next couple of weeks.
Last year, Zaha paid £2.5 million to buy the seven-bedroom Purley mansion which was once the home of the former Palace chairman, Ron Noades, and comes complete with the CPFC club badge on the bottom of its swimming pool. Which might take a bit of explaining to any new team mates dropping round for a social were Zaha to sign for Spurs…
Zaha has been known to be unsettled over his wage deal – reportedly worth £1.8 million per year – as it does not match the bigger salaries which Crystal Palace have agreed with their star signings of the past 12 months – Yohan Cabaye and Christian Benteke.
At this morning’s press conference, Alan Pardew, the manager, underlined his chairman’s position that Zaha is firmly in the club’s plans, and that yesterday’s events were more to do with “agents and the markets” than any real desire from the player to leave Selhurst Park, where his skills were developed by the club’s academy.
“I think its natural for players to understand if there’s bid from another club,” Pardew said.
“You have ups and downs with players. I have no problem with Wilf whatsoever.
“We’re getting back on track,” Pardew said, though he conceded he would have to make a judgement tomorrow whether the player’s is in the right mind to play a full part in his side’s game against Bournemouth at Selhurst Park.
“He was never out of my plans,” Pardew said. “He’s very much our player of the year and a player I want to take forward with out team.”
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