Wilfried Zaha vows to get even better after Chelsea masterclass
Wilfried Zaha delivered a star turn on Saturday as Crystal Palace got their first win of the season, and has vowed to improve as he returns to full fitness.
The Ivory Coast scored the winner as Palace picked up their first points of the campaign, with the Eagles having previously gone without finding the net during their opening seven games of the season.
Roy Hodgson - who replaced Frank de Boer after just four matches - welcomed Zaha back to the side against Chelsea, with the Ivorian having been out since the opening day of the season with injury, and the attacker is confident that the Eagles have enough to beat the drop.
"I gave it my all," Zaha said, as per the London Evening Standard. "I was really tired at the end, I was nearly dying and cramping up. I just need to get back to running and training, doing extras and get back to how I was before.
"I just have to build my fitness up and that will come," he added. "We needed a win. We can get out of this, it is all about confidence.
"We have got good enough players, it is about playing with confidence."
Without Christian Benteke, who has been sidelined with a knee injury, Hodgson paired Zaha with England international Andros Townsend up top, and the duo's pace and movement caused Chelsea's backline problems throughout Saturday's 2-1 victory.
"Me and Andros were just running around all over the place," Zaha continued. "It helped both of us because it is less defending, and when we go forward we have got more energy.
!When you are tired you run out of ideas, so when we are getting the ball and we are still fresh that gives us the chance to do something going forward."
Hodgson also praised the attacking midfielder, who played a key role last term as Palace beat the drop under Sam Allardyce, scoring seven goals and contributing nine assists.
"Wilf is a player who does not have roles. He plays up front and moves around, a bit like Andros. That is what he has always done. It is quite fortunate we were able to give them that liberty and they did ever so well taking on that responsibility.
"It suits him because he is not being locked down in an area and being allowed in areas between the full-back and centre-back," the coach began, explaining why he had the faith to play Zaha in a central role. "It means he has got more space rather than sometimes being pinned down on the wing, which can happen if players play too wide.
"He is a much more all-round player than he was six years ago," the coach concluded. "He's physically stronger and aware of what is required in his position. He deserves a lot of credit for that."