Everton striker Oumar Niasse came incredibly close to signing on the dotted line at Crystal Palace in the last few hours of this summer’s transfer window before the deal mysteriously broke down. Now, for the first time, the Toffees’ hitman has spoken about the failed move.
In what are fairly cryptic quotes, Niasse appears to portray a hint of regret over the transfer not taking place. At the time, Steve Parish and the club suggested that an unacceptable fee demanded by Oumar’s agent was the reason for us pulling the plug, a claim that the Everton man appears a tad cagey over addressing in the quotes attached above.
With Christian Benteke all set to return to the Palace starting XI tomorrow after close to two months out of action with a knee ligament injury, Roy Hodgson will be breathing a huge sigh of relief. In Niasse, the former England gaffer would have had a competent back-up goalscorer to fill the void but for reasons that are destined to always remain murky, we decided to go without and paid a heavy price for it.
Given our luck so far this term, you wouldn’t bet against the Senegal international rolling into Selhurst Park in the form of his life and heaping misery onto the club who decided against bringing him in at the last minute. Indeed, after being practically frozen out by former boss Ronald Koeman, Oumar appears to have been taken into the hearts of the Everton faithful in recent weeks, with his enthusiasm and desire to prove that he was worthy of a move to Goodison Park there for all to see.
It’s been made clear that Palace will be looking to purchase at least one if not two strikers in the early stages of the upcoming January transfer window in a bid to alleviate the pressure on Christian Benteke’s shoulders. We probably won’t be looking to engage Niasse in negotiations for a second time but the pessimist in me can’t help feeling as though he’ll be desperate to show that we were wrong not to push the deal through back in August by the time the whistle blows tomorrow.