Despite plenty of suggestions to the contrary in recent weeks, both The Mirror and The Evening Standard yesterday reported that Crystal Palace’s board remain unmoved in their desire to keep Yannick Bolasie at the football club for the start of the new Premier League season.
Tottenham have been linked with a big money move for the winger all summer long, but have seemingly been told that the 26-year-old will not be leaving Selhurst Park between now and the end of August, regardless of the fee on offer, such is his importance to the squad as a whole.
Whilst Yannick’s absence from Palace’s pre-season campaign has set plenty of alarm bells ringing in the minds of Palace fans, the club’s official outlets have assured everyone on numerous occasions that Yannick is simply injured and is not angling for a move away from SE25. Despite the obvious convenience of his sudden disappearance from the first-team picture, we have little choice other than to believe what we are being told by those in control; regardless of the scepticism that is often so rife amongst our fans.
In truth, Alan Pardew’s summer signings to date have been genuinely impressive, but you get the feeling that the continued use of two out-and-out wingers in the shape of Bolasie and Zaha will drive us on for at least the first few months of the 2015/16 campaign, acting as an old and reliable tactical crutch upon which the Eagles’ boss can comfortably lean.
Of course, he will look to implement new tweaks and changes to the group over the next nine months, but after enjoying such huge success with the help of the aforementioned wide men, there will be a natural and wise reluctance to run headfirst into fixing something that is far from broken. It would be easy to worry that we will become too predictable, but in Bolasie, we possess one of the most eye-poppingly unique attacking talents in the Premier League; a fact that both ourselves and Tottenham Hotspur appear to understand clearly.
They may be prepared to edge their offer up towards the £20 million mark, but for a club who will openly admit to relying far too heavily on what Bolasie brings to the table each week, it simply won’t be enough to force us into sanctioning a sale at this stage of the transfer window.
For Pochettino, it may come as something of a surprise, but for the first time in as long as I can remember, there is a sense that Crystal Palace could be on the brink of building something which lasts; with a certain spring-heeled winger at the heart of our plans.