Burnley left back Charlie Taylor ready to test himself against Crystal Palace talisman Wilfried Zaha

Charlie Taylor is looking forward to testing himself against arguably one of the most exciting talents in the Premier League again tomorrow.


Crystal Palace come to Turf Moor having completed the double over Burnley last season, with Wilfred Zaha almost unplayable in the 3-1 win in East Lancashire.

Wilfried Zaha drills in Crystal Palaces third goal at Turf Moor last season

Wilfried Zaha drills in Crystal Palaces third goal at Turf Moor last season

The Ivory Coast forward bamboozled the Burnley defence as he scored the third goal, and Taylor feels he is as good as anyone he has faced: "He is one of the hardest players I've ever played against.

“He never gives you an easy game.

“He's physical, he's got pace, power a bit of everything really.

“You can see how good he is by the fact that nearly all the big teams wanted him last summer.

"He's a key player for Palace, but they have 10 other players. We know how good they are.

“As much as he is their talisman, they have also got other top class players we need to be wary of.

"One of their main strengths is that they are a very good on the counter attack and they have got pace all over the pitch. We need to be wary of that and hopefully avoid a repeat of last year."

While Zaha is one of the most feared wide players in the top flight, Taylor plays on the same flank as one of the league’s biggest prospects.

Dwight McNeil turned 20 last Friday, and Taylor feels the sky is the limit: "Yes, he is a special talent Dwight.

“He has got a great head on his shoulders, he's very down to earth, and he is that good he can go as far as he wants.

“He possess that much quality on the ball it must be a dream for Chris (Wood) and Ashley (Barnes).

"In his first session, you can sort of tell if someone has got a bit, and every day more and more he started coming out of his shell and producing moments when you are a bit in awe of him.

“I'll probably be the first one to praise him. I work with him quite closely and see first hand just how good he is, and appreciate that if I give him the ball, I'm most likely not going to get it back!

“I mean he will take it in any situation, he is technically so gifted. It really helps me and I'm sure he thrives off it."

While Zaha’s pace and trickery marks him out, for McNeil, his ability to dig out a cross under pressure is a major asset.

Wood and Barnes are profiting from his quality, and Taylor admitted: "It makes their jobs a bit easier.

“It they know if the ball is wide and he has got it, there is a very good chance it is going to be on the money and coming into the box, and they have got to be alert and alive, which they usually are.

“Everyone here knows how good he is, and the quality he has got is on show every week.

“It is scary he is so young. There are not many teenagers starting regularly in the Premier League.”