For a short time last week, rumours began to swirl over a possible Palace move for Toulouse’s highly-rated young goalkeeper Alban Lafont but according to Ed Aarons in The Guardian, it’s a deal that the Eagles are unlikely to push ahead with.
Having played over 100 games for the Ligue Un outfit at the age of just 19, Lafont has been earmarked as the next big thing in French goalkeeping for quite some time; a fact which made last week’s stories about a potentially imminent move to Palace all the more eyebrow-raising.
Of course, with an ever-growing reputation such as his, Lafont is understandably keen to secure a move away over the next couple of months but with plenty of Europe’s big hitters having been mentioned in the same breath as him over the last year or so, the mere thought of Palace leapfrogging everyone else did feel a little far-fetched with the story first broke.
The initial report in France seemed to centre around the suggestion that Roy Hodgson and co. had guaranteed the teenager the number one spot at Selhurst Park; a promise which made little to no sense given the deal we already have a deal in place to take Getafe stopper Vicente Guaita from them when his contract expires at the end of June. Why would we work so hard to convince the Spaniard that SE25 was the perfect destination for him, only to promptly relegate him to a place on the bench on the first day of pre-season training?
Now, Ed Aarons (a man you can almost always trust when it comes to Palace news) is calming the speculation surrounding Lafont, disclosing that, whilst we have been scouting the Frenchman for some time, we’re unlikely to bring him in alongside Guaita prior to the new season getting underway.
On the basis of ability alone it goes without saying that I would love to see Lafont hopping across the channel and signing up with us but for the time being, it looks to be a story that isn’t fully rooted in reality.