Julian Speroni is a man who is adored by almost every Crystal Palace fan on the planet and when speaking to the press after Saturday’s home game against Schalke, he reminded everyone why.
The Argentine stopper is now on the verge of starting his 13th season in SE25, having grown as both a goalkeeper and a man since making the move from Dundee in the summer of 2004. The memories of his shoulder length hair and nervous disposition may be fading now but for the man himself, the prospect of stepping out at Selhurst Park still excites him just as much.
Given Frank de Boer’s decision to start Julian instead of Wayne Hennessey against Schalke, plenty of fans have begun wondering if the Palace legend is set for an emotional return to the first-team when we welcome Huddersfield to south London on Saturday; it’s a role Julian is absolutely desperate to take up again, as the quotes attached above prove.
It’s easy to forget now but in the summer of 2010, Speroni was a man with a number of attractive offers from elsewhere. Despite those, he decided to stay with the club that had taken him to their hearts, resting heavily upon the assurances of Steve Parish and the other members of CPFC2010 who had just saved the club from financial oblivion. It was a call that Speroni clearly doesn’t regret and now, years after he may have felt his chances of playing regularly in red and blue had disappeared, it looks as if a recall may well be on the cards.
There is still plenty of talk surrounding a move for a new outright number one before the transfer window closes but if Speroni has made it above Hennessey in Frank de Boer’s goalkeeping hierarchy, you certainly won’t see me complaining.
I defy you to read Julian’s comments in the article above and not feel a smile spreading across your face. The man is the definition of a club legend at Crystal Palace and should be given a job for life with us if he wants one.