Crystal Palace aren't a one-man team - Chris Hughton

Wilfried Zaha in action against Brighton last season. Picture by PW Sporting Photography
Wilfried Zaha in action against Brighton last season. Picture by PW Sporting Photography

Brighton & Hove Albion manager Chris Hughton believes it is unfair on Crystal Palace to say they rely solely on Wilfried Zaha.

The Ivory Coast international is Palace's talisman and the Eagles have lost their last ten Premier League games when the forward has not played.

Zaha has scored three goals in 12 matches this season and Hughton was asked if Palace are dependent on the 26-year-old in his pre-match press conference.

Hughton replied: "It’s an interesting question because I suppose there are the stats that we all know about as regards them winning games with Zaha.

"But I think as a team and the way the team plays, and the individuals they have got, no I don’t think they are as reliant on him as a team.

"But he is an outstanding individual and there is no doubt he is a top, top player that can turn a game. When you pick out the top players in the country and look at their abilities, he has those type of abilities.

"So there is no doubt about that quality he has got, but I think it would be unfair to say they are a team that rely on him."

Hughton added he has decisions to make with his team selection for tonight's match.

Summer signings Bernardo and Yves Bissouma have impressed in recent games and Florin Andone netted the winner at Huddersfield on his first start.

Asked if that's an indication of how Albion's squad has improved, Hughton said: "Yes but you see it with lots of teams. You bring players in, whether in January or the summer, for the right reasons but sometimes it can take time to adjust and sometimes there's that little bit of the ones that you know.

"They know the job, they've done it on a regular basis. That's just trying to get that balance.

"You are seeing Bernardo on the back of a couple of good games, Bissouma is another one, Andone his first start.

"It's about getting the right moments. Probably we're at the stage now, particularly with Alireza (Jahanbakhsh) training yesterday, where there are a lot of decisions to make and a lot of challenges."


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