Why Everton dodged a bullet by signing Alex Iwobi instead of Zaha
As per Guardian, Everton were interested in a move for Crystal Palace winger Wilfried Zaha. However, the deal fell apart and the Toffees sealed a late transfer for Alex Iwobi for a fee estimated to be around £35m.
After having refused to meet the Eagles’ demand of £100m for the former Manchester United forward, Everton settled for the 23-year old Iwobi.
As the season progresses, however, both sides are in stark contrast to each other. Palace are currently ninth on the table while Everton are at the bottom and are in danger of relegation.
Would Zaha’s arrival have made a difference for Silva and Everton? Or has Iwobi proven that football isn’t entirely about money?
Let’s have a look at both players and analyze their performances.
Zaha has had one of the worst starts to the Premier League in recent times. The Eagles’ main man has featured in 10 of their 11 outings and it looks like a season to forget for the Ivorian.
The Palace forward has provided just one assist in all games and seems like a shadow of his former self.
His strength as a dribbler is still evident, with his displays on the pitch reading an average of 4.5 dribbles per match. Unfortunately, dribbles alone do not win you matches.
Zaha’s goal-scoring prowess was one his major strengths but this season, he seems to have misplaced his scoring boots. He had impressed last season with 10 goals and as many assists.
Though Zaha’s form has not been top-notch lately, Palace are doing well under Roy Hodgson.
The Nigerian winger, on the other hand, has scored one goal from six matches in the Premier League and one from three League Cup outings.
This might not be a major difference but considering Zaha’s £100m price tag, it does seem like the Toffees dodged a major bullet.
Iwobi’s dribbling is yet to improve as he has averaged 1.7 dribbles per match and is far behind Zaha in this aspect.
Iwobi, meanwhile, scored 6 goals and assisted 9 times for Arsenal last season, which is not bad for someone who was not a regular starter. Hence, Zaha’s failure to join Everton is, by all means, a profitable affair for the Merseysiders.