Home sweet home.
These three words must surely have been on the mind of Crystal Palace winger Wilfried Zaha as he submitted an application to FIFA to change his country of allegiance. The mercurial winger who has made two substitute appearances for England’s Three Lions, the last coming in 2013, was born in the Ivory Coast and moved to the UK when he was four years old.
Despite early promise of progressing to England’s senior team from the U-21 squad, Zaha has seen his chances of breaking into the team diminish, owing to widespread belief that his end product does not always match his great dribbling skills.
England’s loss is however a massive gain to the Elephants of Ivory Coast who will be able to call on a player capable of moments of magic during a game. It is also a boost for coach Michel Dussuyer after winger Gervinho was ruled out of the upcoming Africa Nations Cup (AFCON) tournament in Gabon due to a knee injury.
Zaha’s manager at Crystal Palace Alan Pardew stated that he ‘could understand Zaha’s frustration at not being picked for England’.