Wilfried Zaha is on the verge of completing a move to Manchester United but he shouldn’t get carried away by a move to Old Trafford, the hard work is only just beginning.
Wilfried Zaha is rated as one of the best young wingers in England and on the verge of finally making that move up North for a fee of around £12 million.
He will likely go on loan to Crystal Palace for the rest of the season and there are a few things Zaha needs to consider which should help him stay grounded.
The first is the fact that Sir Alex Ferguson has not actually said he is looking to axe Nani.
There have already been widespread reports suggesting that Zaha is the replacement for the Portuguese winger but if this was the case, they certainly wouldn’t loan him back to Palace.
The second thing he has to consider is the way Ferguson treats younger players like Zaha.
Nick Powell is the perfect example to use; a player signed from a football league club for good money who has been used sparingly in the side this season.
Zaha cannot let himself get carried away at the prospect of bursting into the Manchester United team and terrorising opposition defences because this won’t happen straight away.
Thirdly, he has to learn how to develop his game because playing for Manchester United means he has to become more than a winger.
If he wants to have an impact at United on all of the tournaments the club is involved in, he needs to know how to play different roles.
For example, Antonio Valencia sometimes plays at right back, Danny Welbeck frequently plays at left midfield and Wayne Rooney sometimes drops into the midfield.
The final thing he has to get to grips with is the pressure and expectation of joining a side that expects to win the Premier League, the FA Cup, the Champions League and more each season.
United can be a very unforgiving dressing room and unless Zaha takes it all on board, his teammates could quickly grow frustrated with his apparent naivety and youthfulness; joining United does not mean he has 'made it' - Simply that he has a chance to.
The perfect parallel to look at is the way Raheem Sterling has been used at Liverpool. They had no choice but to play him at the start of the season and once Zaha has worked his way into the United side, he could have even more of an impact.
How do you think Zaha will be used by Ferguson?
image: © jamesboyes