CRYSTAL Palace boss Ian Holloway has praised Wilfried Zaha for the manner in which he has dealt with the intense speculation surrounding his future.

The 20-year-old winger’s scintillating performances so far this season have attracted considerable interest from Manchester United and Arsenal.

However, in recent weeks Zaha’s performances have dipped with the intense scrutiny he has been under.

But the England international was back to his mesmerising best in Saturday’s 0-0 draw against Bolton at Selhurst Park.

Holloway beamed: “I thought he was mature today and goodness me was he exhilarating?

“Yes he was and I don’t think he deserved to be in the side that drew that game.

“The great thing about Wilf is that once he gets moving he is so exciting and towards the end of the game I just want him to have the ball and I was entertained, which is all I can ask.

“It’s not easy when you’re not used to the limelight and the limelight he has had to put up with is difficult to deal with when you are as honest and as nice a kid as he is.”

Holloway dismissed the rumours and is determined to keep Zaha but believes that either way, Palace will be able to continue their promotion push.

He insisted: “His future is finalised, he is a Crystal Palace player and he is learning what being a good footballer is all about.

“Some of the best football clubs in the world are saying some nice things about him and what a fantastic thing that is to have in your life.

“I dreamed it would happen to me and it never did. I had a good go but I wasn’t as good as Wilfried.

“We are doing fantastically well and Wilfried has played a big part in that, as have the other players, so let’s get on with it and see what happens.

“Whoever’s future is sorted out by whatever means, I don’t really care because my future is here and he plays for me and my team.

“I am very proud of both because that is as good a performance as I’ve seen but unfortunately we’ve only got one point out of it.”

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