Whilst I try to steer clear of ever pointing the readers of HLTCO in the direction of anything The Sun have taken the time to publish, it’s probably worth highlighting their claim over the weekend, that Patrick van Aanholt is a shock transfer target for Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City ahead of the January transfer window.
The Dutch international may have struggled to find his feet for Crystal Palace this term but the report suggests that the City coaching staff have been alerted to the former Chelsea man as an option at left wing-back, given his love of getting forward.
With competition at Selhurst Park in the shape of Jeffrey Schlupp, the returning Pape Souare and fellow Dutchman Jairo Riedewald if necessary, Patrick would almost certainly view the chance to swap the bottom of the league for the very top, particularly if it meant getting a Premier League winner’s medal placed around his neck in May.
Although he hasn’t exactly set the world alight under the guidance of Roy Hodgson, the prospect of a move to The Etihad is actually far more reasonable for all parties than many probably dare to think at first glance. Given the dominance of possession City usually enjoy, it stands to reason that Van Aanholt would have far less defending to do in their side than he does in SE25, offering him the freedom to bomb forward regularly, which appears to be his natural game.
There is no denying that the table-toppers are a little short in the wing-back position which, when you consider the seemingly never-ending financial muscle they have at their disposal, makes a move for Van Aanholt, even if it’s to plug a gap in the short-term, a feasible move.
The Eagles would almost certainly recoup the entirety of the transfer fee they paid Sunderland for him a little under a year ago, whilst not having to worry too much about finding an immediate replacement, thanks to the depth we now possess on the left-hand side of defence.
It could all come to nothing of course but as transfer rumours go, this one feels as though it just may have legs given the specific circumstances at both clubs right now.
Watch this space.