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Why Darren Lewis’ (and Crystal Palace’s) valuation of Wilfried Zaha is some way off

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The Daily Mirror’s Darren Lewis has become the latest personality to voice their derision over Arsenal’s bid for Wilfried Zaha.

Appearing on TalkSPORT, the journalist shot down the club’s initial approach for the Ivorian following Arsenal’s £40m bid last week:

Crystal Palace labelled the sum ‘embarrassing’, while Lewis was on the side of The Eagles when he described The Gunners’ bid as ‘scandalously low’ with a sum that ‘disrespects Palace’.

It has been known for some time that Arsenal do not have too much more by way of funds with which to up their bid for Zaha – and with some reports suggesting Palace value the winger at an eye-watering £120m, sometimes you may wonder why Arsenal are even bothering.

However, while Arsenal’s bid may be some distance below Palace’s valuation of Zaha, there is little in the way of justifying the nine-figure-sum that the Eagles have reportedly slapped on their player.

For context, Atletico Madrid have just signed Joao Felix from Benfica for £113.4m (according to TransferMarkt, at almost twice his market value) – this is a teenager deemed good enough to play in the Champions League and in a team second only to Barcelona in the Spanish top-flight. He scored 15 goals last season on the way to winning the Portuguese league.

In comparison, Zaha is a 26-year-old Manchester United flop who’s had the best season of his career to date, scoring 10 times in the Premier League. His highest (and only) achievement so far is a Community Shield.

The point to get across is that given the inflation of the market in recent years and factoring in Zaha’s true potential, can he really be worth much more than £40m? Clearly, Palace would like more and Arsenal may well have to pay more – but having a standout season should not install a pre-requisite value should someone come knocking.

In reality, neither club is even in the ballpark.

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