Everton are preparing a ‘substantial’ offer for Crystal Palace forward Wilfried Zaha, according to Sky Sports and talkSPORT presenter Jim White.
The sports broadcaster has close ties with majority shareholder Farhad Moshiri, and understands the Blues are willing to test the Eagles’ resolve in an apparent bid to prevent the Ivorian from joining Arsenal.
White’s employer Sky Sports also understands talks are set to be held on Merseyside this week to discuss our approach, with Crystal Palace refusing to sell the 26-year-old for anything less than their £80million valuation.
Zaha’s preferred destination should he leave Selhurst Park before the August 8 deadline remains North London, where the Gunners are preparing an improved bid after their opening £40million offer was turned down.
Crystal Palace Chairman Simon Jordan also doubts a move to Goodison Park would be the best option for the Ivory Coast international, having told talkSPORT on Wednesday: “They’re not a Champions League contender at this moment in time, and I know Everton fans will be up in arms and say, ‘we will be soon enough’.
“Zaha has explicitly talked about wanting to play in the Champions League. He’s ultimately not going to achieve that at Arsenal [this year] either, but with the greatest will in the world, I just think there are a lot more components for him to go to Arsenal than to go to Everton.
“He’s a London boy, and I think he likes the idea of staying in London. Going up north to Everton, whilst being a great football club, is a departure into an area he’s been before at a different stage of his life [and struggled] at Manchester United.
“He’s spoken openly about wanting to play for Arsenal and the style of football Arsenal bring to the table. But money will talk in the end.”
While Jordan doubts a move to Merseyside being something that would appeal to Zaha, Everton boss Marco Silva has held a long-standing interest in the 26-year-old who struck ten goals and ten assists in the 2018/19 Premier League season.
Following Silva’s arrival at Goodison Park, and before the Blues completed our club-record deal for Richarlison, the Toffees were being linked with Zaha, at a time Palace were believed to value the forward at £70million.
Those links returned earlier this month with speculation the board would rival Arsenal in the race for the Ivorian, who penned a long-term contract at Selhurst Park in November worth £130,000-a-week.
Despite his Eagles deal running to 2023, and the forward penning a 20-goal campaign last season, TransferMarkt continue to value the 9-cap ace well below Palace, and have him listed as a £40.5million talent.