Wenger sends former Arsenal assistant Rice to scout Crystal Palace starlet Zaha

Arsene Wenger is considering a move for Crystal Palace forward Wilfried Zaha and has sent one of his most trusted lieutenants, former Arsenal assistant manager Pat Rice, to scout the England U-21 international, the Daily Telegraph has reported.

The newspaper adds that Rice was present on Saturday when Zaha scored twice in Palace’s 4-3 win over Burnley, and has previously seen Zaha in action on a number of occasions. Rice resigned as Wenger’s No. 2 over the summer after 16 years alongside the Frenchman, with the title-winning Arsenal centre-back Steve Bould promoted from the youth team to fill the vacancy.

Zaha has been the subject of interest from a number of Premier League clubs, the Telegraph adds, including Liverpool and Newcastle United, while an unnamed top flight club had an offer for the 19-year-old rejected over the summer.

It is thought that Zaha would be signed as a potential player for the future if Wenger does decide to make a move, with the future of Theo Walcott also a potential factor. Walcott has yet to agree a new contract with the club and his current deal expires next summer, so if the England international were to move on it could create space in the squad for Zaha.

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