The transfer window may have opened less than 24 hours ago but Sam Allardyce and Crystal Palace are already being linked with a host of new signings in the January sales.
Despite a great deal of money being spent on the squad during the summer just gone, a spate of injuries and some poor planning have left us looking horribly short in certain areas heading into 2017, leaving Big Sam with the unenviable task of steadying the team’s leaky defence whilst also scouting frantically for reinforcements in what is always a madcap few weeks.
As a consequence of the horrific car crash suffered by Pape Souare in the opening weeks of the season, we have been playing without a recognised left-back for a large chunk of the campaign, leaving both the manager and board in little doubt over where their first priority should lie when looking to conduct early business in 2017. Of course, Joel Ward, Martin Kelly and Zeki Fryers have all done their best to fill in during Pape’s absence but none have looked entirely comfortable, giving our back four a distinctly lopsided feel for the most part.
Elsewhere, there are rumblings of moves for strikers and wide attacking midfielders, no doubt given added momentum by the news of Wilfried Zaha’s imminent departure to the African Cup of Nations following his decision to represent Ivory Coast instead of England.
All of this points towards an extremely busy few weeks for Sam Allardyce and the board of directors, who quite rightly want to put real daylight between ourselves and relegation zone having somehow managed to lurch into the New Year with a tiny bit of breathing room within which to work.
The squad we currently have may be a talented one but it’s in need of some added backbone if it is to kick on between now and May; something that the trio referenced in the article above would certainly offer.