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Wilfried Zaha will attract interest from Arsenal, Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur before the end of the summer transfer window, according to former Crystal Palace midfielder John Salako.
The 25-year-old has reportedly turned down a new contract worth £125,000-a-week to stay at Selhurst Park and has told the club he wants to leave despite only signing a new deal in May 2017. Tottenham have again been heavily linked with a move for the Ivory Coast international but Salako expects Arsenal and Chelsea to join the race to sign Zaha in the final weeks of the transfer window.
‘I think he went off to Man United too early,’ Salako said on Love Sport radio. ‘He came back and he’s been absolutely sensational. It is his home, he is comfortable & he knows everyone. ‘He would fit into any team Chelsea, Tottenham, Arsenal and I can see all those guys clambering for him and the lure of a big club, playing in big arenas and in the Champions League.
‘I think turning down this contract in a massive indication that he’s got some interest elsewhere and could be ready to move elsewhere.’ Zaha endured an ill-fated two-year spell with United, making just four appearances in all and eventually returning to Crystal Palace for two spells on loan before re-joining his boyhood side in 2015. The winger has become an increasingly significant figure for Palace in recent seasons and last term played a key role in the club surviving relegation from the Premier League.
He netted nine goals and contributed five assists for Roy Hodgson’s men as the Eagles finished 11th in the table. Interest from Mauricio Pochettino at Tottenham has been persistent throughout Zaha’s improvement and Salako feels he would ideally suit a move to north London. ‘I think he brings something different to Spurs,’ he added.
‘He wouldn’t necessarily be a starter but I think once he goes and trains and Pochettino gets hold of him and they work with him and explain to him. ‘I think he understands that side of the game and going and defending. ‘I believe that Zaha’s physicality, strength, pace and ability on the ball is just phenomenal.’