Wilfried Zaha: It’s passion – not anger – fuelling my performances for Crystal Palace

Wilfried Zaha has denied he is “playing angry” for Crystal Palace.

The Eagles attacker netted his eighth Premier League goal of the season in today’s 1-1 draw with Leicester City at Selhurst Park.

But Amazon Prime, screening the match in SE25, said in their commentary that the Ivory Coast international was “playing angry” after a challenge by James Justin saw the pair exchange verbals.

Zaha also tangled with Tyrone Mings in the 3-0 loss at Aston Villa on Boxing Day – the defender being dismissed later in that first half.

But Zaha defended his approach. He told Amazon Prime: “It’s just passion that I play with.

“People may see it as anger or whatever – but I just have passion. I love what I do. I can’t stand around and watch other teams because when we play we have someone up our backsides the whole time. So why can’t we do the same? That’s how I play every game.”

Palace are 13th in the Premier League table and have moved on to 19 points.

They went into the Leicester fixture off the back of morale-bashing reverses to Villa and a 7-0 walloping at the hands of Liverpool.

Asked if he was pleased by the outcome of today’s game, Zaha said: “I’m happy, to be honest, because these last couple of games have been tough for us.

“We worked hard. I felt we could’ve got all three points but we’ll take a point.

“One hundred per cent I’ll take that after the last couple of results we got. The way we worked today I’m definitely happier and we’ll take that going into the new year.”

Zaha has eight goals in 14 top-flight appearances this season.

He said: “I’m not trying to think about scoring, too much. I’m concentrating on playing well really and making sure the chances keep on coming. I’m happy to score my eighth goal but it’s all about the team.”

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