Chelsea are reportedly interested in signing Wilfried Zaha this January but have been put off by Crystal Palace’s £80 million valuation of the player.
According to a report by Daily Express, Chelsea still retain an interest in making a move for long-term target Wilfried Zaha in the January transfer window. The Blues, though, are not prepared to meet Crystal Palace’s £80 million valuation of the Ivory Coast international.
Zaha has been Crystal Palace’s talisman since returning from Manchester United in 2015. Five years into his second coming at the South London club, the 27-year-old has seen his value grow exponentially, establishing himself as one of the best attacking players in the Premier League.
His exploits for Crystal Palace piqued the interest of some of the biggest clubs in the Premier League and it was believed that a summer move away from Selhurst Park was in the offing. Zaha even requested a summer departure, only for the Eagles to decline him a chance to leave. Chelsea were among the suitors back then, but a move never materialised.
Denied a chance to make a move to one of the biggest clubs in the world, Zaha struggled to make an impact early on this season but has slowly come into his own in recent weeks. As a result, the interest in him has resurfaced, with Chelsea setting their sights on him once again.
Attack has been one of the stronger suits for Chelsea under Frank Lampard, but the need to sign a winger is urgent as well. Willian is in the final year of his deal with the Blues, with his future at Stamford Bridge being uncertain even though the Brazilian has iterated that he would like to stay.
Pedro has also been linked with an exit from Chelsea. If both Pedro and Willian leave, Christian Pulisic and Callum Hudson-Odoi will be the only remaining wingers at Lampard’s disposal. As a result, Zaha is a viable target for Chelsea, who would have an experienced Premier League player at their disposal.
However, Chelsea have been put off by the asking price that Crystal Palace have slapped on Zaha. The Eagles are demanding £80 million in exchange for the 27-year-old, a valuation that Chelsea are unwilling to meet.
While Chelsea would like to sign Zaha this January after having their transfer ban being cut short, a compromise would have to be reached for any move to see the light of the day. It now remains to be seen if Chelsea can reach an agreement with Palace over a transfer fee, or if they are forced to wait till the summer to land their top target.