Rio Ferdinand recently broke down exactly why Wilfried Zaha’s time at Manchester United before rejoining Crystal Palace was unsuccessful.
Wilfried Zaha stood as one of the English game’s hottest prospects when he signed for Manchester United for 15 million pounds from Crystal Palace back in 2013 but after two years at one of the Premier League’s most prestigious clubs it became clear that Zaha was simply not ready for the big-time.
United, at the time, were under the stewardship of David Moyes, the first manager tasked with attempting to replicate the glory days of the Ferguson-era, and though we all know how that eventually turned out for the former-Everton man, the time still remains among the most frustrating eras for the fans of the Red Devils.
Of course, United have slowly started to recapture their momentum and this year are enjoying some of their most consistent form in some time but for players like Zaha – who came up during their rocky spell – their time spent at Old Trafford is a time they would more-than-likely rather forget.
Rio Ferdinand is a man who has experienced all of the ups and downs of life at the very top and in a recent interview with The Mirror, broke down exactly why he thought Zaha was unsuccessful at United, and how he still has all the talent necessary to be a star.
“I think with a lot of transfers, it comes timing. That determines whether it’s a go-er or a failure. I think he was young, inexperienced, needed time to mature, and I don’t think he was probably given enough opportunities. David Moyes was under a lot of pressure at the time, and he didn’t see him as one of his go-to guys. So I think timing was a key factor I think.
“I think if he had his time again he’d maybe do a few things differently but what I would say, in terms of natural ability, raw ability, he’d be up there. This kid, if you said to him I want you to play against a full-back, stand him up and beat him one-on-one, he’d be one of my first picks in the league because he’s got that ability, he can move anybody.
“But then it was about developing the end product, your assists, your decision-making in the final third, positions to take up to receive the ball, they were things he needed to learn. And I think he’s on the right path now learning that and he’s doing it the environment way, he’s ultra confident, he’s comfortable, back at Crystal Palace.
“He’s someone that I think will get another move and we’ll see a different ending to the one we saw at Manchester United.”
At 25-years-old, it does finally appear as though Zaha is starting to put the pieces together and with time on his side, perhaps it wouldn’t be out of the question to see him at a top-4 side within the next year or two.
Cillian Cunningham, Pundit Arena