Last weekend Mo Salah was deservedly crowned PFA Player of the Year after a breathtaking season with Liverpool.
The Egyptian just edged out Kevin De Bruyne, whilst Harry Kane, David De Gea, David Silva and Leroy Sane also all went home empty handed.
The award process has been and gone and there’s nothing anyone can do about it, but this weekend’s results further emphasised one huge absence from the shortlist.
This is an individual accolade, which points to why Salah pipped De Bruyne considering the Egyptian’s jaw-dropping goalscoring exploits.
So if you take individual brilliance as the main factor what more could Wilfried Zaha have done this season to gain recognition?
Without wanting to entertain hyperbole, Zaha is the sole reason why Crystal Palace are still in the Premier League.
And the stats back up that claim.
In nine games without Zaha, Palace have claimed a grand total of zero points. None. Zilch.
Yet in the 27 games with their talisman, the Eagles have garnered 38 points.
Considering the ‘magical 40 point mark’ is still seen as the bar to clinch Premier League safety, Zaha’s miracle working has effectively got them over the line with 11 games to spare.
Palace actually average 1.46 points per game with Zaha too – which would be enough to put them seventh above Burnley across the course of a season.
Zaha has produced time and time again, with his latest virtuoso display coming in the thumping 5-0 win over Leicester on Saturday.
Add to that two goals in the derby victory over Brighton and a winner against Chelsea earlier on this season and Zaha is also looking like the man for the big occasion.
No player gets Palace and south London like he does which is why they’re the perfect fit.
It means England and Gareth Southgate are faced with a sense of ‘what if’ at the World Cup this summer…
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