Palace chairman Steve Parish has shared his pleasure at Wilfried Zaha’s contract extension, describing the deal as the “final piece of the jigsaw”.
Speaking to Palace TV, he said: “It’s absolutely fantastic for the football club. We’re all so committed this year to giving it our best shot, and this is the final piece of the jigsaw.
“It’s nice to put all those stories to bed - stories that we knew weren’t true and were just rumour mongering. Wilfried the player that we’ve seen all summer has done everything properly and right.
"He’s shown the respect he’s got for this football club, and he should be applauded for that with all the noise that was going on around him. Today, we’ve settled everything in terms of his long-term future, so we’re absolutely ecstatic.”
Zaha has been at the club since the chairman’s reign began back in 2010. Reflecting on their relationship over the last eight years, Parish said: “He’s scored the first goal when we bought the club in 2010. It’s been an incredible journey that we’ve been on together. It’s been a fantastic journey, for the club, for me, for him. It seems as though we’re intertwined on this journey, and long may it continue.”
Manager Roy Hodgson has frequently deployed Zaha in a more central attacking role, which contributed to his record haul of nine Premier League goals last season and he has already opened his account this season with a strike against Fulham last Saturday.
Parish added: “It seems to work well, doesn’t it! He’s scoring goals and providing assists. They seem to have such a very good relationship. You’ve got a man there with such experience in Roy, and a player who wants to learn and listen in Wilf. It seems to be having an effect.”
Parish was quick to praise the work of his team behind the scenes that have helped strengthen the playing squad this summer, following the additions of Max Meyer, Cheikhou Kouyate, Vicente Guaita, as well as Jordan Ayew on loan.
He said: “Let’s hope that together, with the signings that we’ve brought in and all the hard work behind the scenes that Dougie, Iain Moody and everyone at the club have put in, that we have a season that I think we deserve, and that the players are capable of.”