Crystal Palace talisman Wilfried Zaha a major doubt for Man Utd and Tottenham ties, admits boss Roy Hodgson

CRYSTAL PALACE are set to be without Wilfried Zaha for their upcoming games against Manchester United and Tottenham, according to boss Roy Hodgson.

The Eagles have been without their talismanic forward for the last four Premier League games due to a thigh muscle strain.

And while Palace fans were hoping the 28-year-old would be making his return against Man Utd on Wednesday, Hodgson has revealed they will almost certainly have to wait a little longer.

When asked whether he will be fit for the Man Utd and Spurs games, the former England manager said: “I doubt it, unfortunately. I think we have to wait.

“The Manchester United game that has been thrust upon us is obviously something we’re pretty unhappy about, especially in this current state of affairs where we do have so many of our good players, our first team players unavailable.

“It’s pretty tough to have to play Man United now and then get three weeks off when we don’t need three weeks off. I’d have much preferred if this game had stayed where it was.

“But it’s part and parcel, I guess, of being in the Premier League, being involved in cup competitions.

"The powers that be feel the need to move games, sometimes it will suit a team and sometimes it won’t. But I’ve got to say, the game coming up on Wednesday definitely doesn’t suit us.

“I’d have much preferred to have a week now to get people back in some sort of form, give those guys who are playing at least a few more days to possibly be ready.

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"And most importantly give ourselves a chance to recover from two unbelievably difficult games that we’ve had to face against Brighton and Fulham where we’ve spent a lot of the time working very hard to defend our goal.”

Palace initially struggled without Zaha as they suffered back-to-back defeats against Leeds and Burnley.

But their last two outings have displayed something of a turnaround as they beat rivals Brighton in dramatic fashion at the Amex Stadium and then followed that up with a goalless draw against Fulham.

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