Barcelona enter race to sign Crystal Palace winger on a free transfer in the summer

Photo by Sebastian Frej/MB Media/Getty Images

FC Barcelona are preparing for a hectic summer, during which the team intends to address some of the glaring problems within the squad. A name that has recently emerged in the news reports is Wilfried Zaha. According to “The Telegraph“, Barcelona are amongst the many teams interested in acquiring the Ivorian’s services this summer.

Zaha is nearing the end of his contract and will thus be a free agent this summer. Considering the Catalans’ tussles with financial fair play and recent success with free agents, the 30-year-old is an attractive commodity in an otherwise inflated market. The signing of Zaha at no cost would help to provide the squad a boost in quality, without impeding the arrival of other potential signings.

Xavi appears to be highly interested in recruiting a direct, pacy left-winger, with Carrasco rumored to be the chosen one for next season. However, the Belgian winger would cost €20M, unlike Zaha, who would arrive on a free deal. He is a forward who can operate as either a striker or a winger. Zaha is renowned for his blazing speed, deft dribbling, and close control, all of which help him overcome opponents in one-on-one situations.

With Barcelona lacking such ball-dominant dribblers out wide, Zaha’s zestful play style coincides with the club’s requirements. The 30-year-old’s season has been riddled with injuries, but he managed to keep Crystal Palace afloat with 9 G/A in the Premier League.

Zaha is a player that enjoys running at defenders while the ball is in his possession. He frequently cuts inside from the wing onto his preferred left foot and is not hesitant to attempt risky dribbles. He is a strong and powerful player who can withstand challenges from opponents and cling onto the ball.

In the 2021/22 Season, no Premier League forward made more passes into the penalty box than Wilfred Zaha (65). The Crystal Palace winger also had the second most progressive carries (229) amongst Premier League forwards.

However, question marks can be raised in regard to Zaha’s age and long-term availability. Considering he is 30 with little time left to offer at an elite level, it is apparent his potential arrival could merely be considered a stopgap with short-term gains in mind.

Barca Divine
Barca Divine
Meet Shahraiz Sajjad, a Freelance Graphic Designer and football enthusiast specializing in Futbol Club Barcelona. With a keen eye for game analysis, Shahraiz not only crafts visually appealing graphics but also provides insightful content, offering a unique perspective on the world of FC Barcelona through the fusion of design and football expertise.

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