Bent Urges Newcastle United To ‘Go And Get’ Crystal Palace Forward: Right Choice For The Magpies?

Wilfried Zaha of Cystal Palace in action during the Premier League match between Crystal Palace and Manchester City at Selhurst Park on October 19, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Alex Davidson/Getty Images)

In a recent interview with Football Insider, former Premier League forward Darren Bent urged Newcastle United to make a move for Crystal Palace’s star man Wilfried Zaha when he said,

“I know a lot of guys think Newcastle is so far north but it’s an excellent place to live. Great place, nice restaurants, lively nightlife, it’s bubbly and it’s passionate.

“If they can go and get someone like Wilfried Zaha, that would be tempting. Money talks, we know that. He’s on what, £100,000-a-week now? If Newcastle offer him more, you’re not asking him to move to Mars!”

Zaha’s Excellent Spell At Selhurst Park

The Magpies are on the verge of being taken over by PCP Capital Partners (via Sky Sports), and therefore they should soon have the financial muscle to attract some of the top talents in English football. Zaha is undoubtedly a part of that group as he has excelled as the focal point of Roy Hodgson’s attack in recent seasons. The Ivorian speedster has been responsible for putting in some match-winning performances for the Eagles during this campaign after firmly establishing himself as a must-see attraction at Selhurst Park these days.

The ex-Manchester United attacker has banged in three goals and provided five assists in 30 appearances for Palace this term across all competitions which is far from a decent return for a player of his attacking potential and skillset. However, Zaha deserves credit for being a constant menace for the opposition defenders going forward after he averaged 1.5 shots, 1.0 key passes and 4.7 dribbles in every 90 minutes of league football this season (stats via whoscored).

The 27-year-old has also secured 17 senior caps for the Ivory Coast national team while registering five goals for his country in the process. He will once again be expected to play a crucial role for his nation in next year’s African Cup of Nations.

Wilfried Zaha #11 of Crystal Palace FC controls the ball during the match against FC Cincinnati at Nippert Stadium on July 16, 2016, in Cincinnati, Ohio. Crystal Palace FC defeated FC Cincinnati 2-0. (Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)

What Are The Ivory Coast International’s Best Attributes? 

Zaha can use his quickness and power to make some darting runs in behind the opposition defence and is always willing to take on his marker and beat him off the dribble out on the wide areas. He has built a reputation for earning penalties as he has a low centre of gravity and is full of tricks that makes him an unpredictable threat for the opposition defenders.

Steve Bruce can undeniably benefit from recruiting a player of Zaha’s skill set as he will be a significant upgrade over Miguel Almiron, Allan Saint-Maximin and Christian Atsu at St. James’ Park. Plus, the Ivorian winger is highly versatile and could also play as a secondary striker alongside Joelinton which could give Bruce the freedom to adopt a more attacking oriented playing style at Tyneside.

Should Bruce Listen To Bent’s Advice By Making A Move For Zaha This Summer?

Zaha has all the attributes required to be a grand success at a club like Newcastle as he will not only add more pace and goals to their attack but also enhance the overall depth of their squad. Hence, it makes a lot of sense for the Magpies to listen to Bent’s advice by offering the Abidjan-born talent a chance to make a name for himself under the regime of the club’s new owners.

A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.