Dazet Wilfried Armel Zaha (born 10 November 1992), known as Wilfried Zaha, is a professional footballer who plays as a winger for Premier League club Crystal Palace.
Born in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, Zaha moved with his family – including his eight siblings – to Thornton Heath in the London Borough of Croydon, at the age of four, He was educated at Whitehorse Manor Junior School, Thornton Heath and Selsdon High School, Selsdon.
He played football at school, and joined the Crystal Palace academy aged 12. Zaha was given his Crystal Palace first-team debut at home to Cardiff City on 27 March 2010 by caretaker manager Paul Hart as a substitute with 10 minutes remaining in the match. He signed a two-year professional contract with Palace during April 2010.
On 25 January 2013, Zaha agreed to join Premier League side Manchester United, and would immediately be loaned back to Crystal Palace for the remainder of the season. Palace tried to delay the transfer and agree the transfer in the summer of 2013, but Football League rules prevented this with the player having to join United and be loaned back to Palace. Zaha passed the medical at Manchester United, signing a five-and-a-half-year contract on 26 January 2013 for a reported £10m rising to £15m with performance-related add-ons.
On 11 August 2013, Zaha made his debut for Manchester United in the 2013 FA Community Shield against Wigan Athletic. He was included in the starting line-up and played 61 minutes before being replaced by Antonio Valencia as he won his first major honour in football. On 31 January 2014, Zaha completed a loan move to Cardiff City for the remainder of the 2013–14 season after being left out of favour by then manager David Moyes.
On 28 August 2014, Zaha agreed to a season-long loan deal with Crystal Palace. Two days later, in the first match of his loan, he scored a stoppage-time equaliser in a 3–3 draw at Newcastle United.
On 2 February 2015, the final day of the winter transfer window, Zaha’s move to Palace was made permanent with the signing of a five-and-a-half-year contract for an undisclosed fee. It also included a buy back clause, believed to be in the region of £3 million, rising to £6 million with add-ons; Manchester United will also receive a percentage of the fee if Palace sell Zaha in the future.
Zaha was eligible to represent both the Ivory Coast and England, the former because it was where he was born and the latter because it is where he grew up. His success over the course of his first full season resulted in a call-up to the England under-19 side for their game against Germany in February 2011.
He was called up to the under-21 team on 23 February 2012. He made his debut in a 4–0 win against Belgium on 29 February, assisting Henri Lansbury for the third goal. On 11 November 2012, Zaha was called up to the senior team by manager Roy Hodgson for a friendly match against Sweden on 14 November. He came on as a substitute for fellow debutant Raheem Sterling in the 83rd minute.