BY ROB SUTHERLAND
Roy Hodgson has admitted that Crystal Palace could once again face a fight to keep hold of Wilfried Zaha.
Both Arsenal and Everton made attempts to sign the 27-year-old last summer.
Zaha submitted a transfer request just before the transfer window closed as he pushed for a switch to Goodison Park.
Chelsea have been linked with the Ivory Coast international – but that depends on them getting their transfer ban lifted.
Zaha scored the opening goal in Crystal Palace’s 2-0 win at Burnley on Saturday.
Hodgson said: “He’s a good player, isn’t he? He’s capable of causing problems to any defence anywhere in the world.
“The goal he scored, one or two chances he helped set up – that’s what we need from him. That’s two [goals] in two [games] and if he can keep that up it helps enormously.”
“When he is in good form and concentrating, like he was today, he’s also good defensively. He helped us enormously in that respect.
“We never wanted to lose him. The club has never gone out to say they’d like to see Wilfried sold.
“I’m happy it didn’t materialise – he’s done exceptionally well to get over that. Who knows, we might be confronted with it again. Until that day arrives I am happy to work with him.
“Palace and Burnley are in the same situation. When a player does well it’s not always that easy to keep hold of them. There is a hierarchy.
“If you are Crystal Palace, you have to accept there are bigger, richer clubs. I can’t say: ‘Stay and we’ll be in the Champions League next year’.”
Away from Zaha’s performance, Hodgson felt that the win was the result of reminding his players during the difficult run of games that the quality of performances mattered, rather than just results.
“It was an impressive victory,” he said. “I don’t think we’ve been in bad form or played poorly but it was important for me to keep players believing you don’t necessarily equate performances with results.”
“We are through that period. It was very important we came out and gave a similar performance and to hopefully get a result, which we did.”