Plenty of Palace fans and neutrals alike had assumed that Selhurst Park was the perfect fit for former Arsenal man Jack Wilshere once news first broke that he wouldn’t be signing a new deal at The Emirates but according to the latest reports, the 26-year-old is all set to sign a permanent deal with Turkish giants Fenerbache.
The Eagles were far from the only English club who declared an interest in the Gunners’ academy graduate following news of his stalemate with the club’s board but despite feelers being put out by the likes of West Ham, Everton and Wolves alongside us, it sounds as though the England man has his heart set on a move East.
The deal, which at the time of writing is still yet to be officially announced, is believed to have been heavily influenced by former Tottenham and Liverpool Director of Footbal Damien Comolli, who is now fulfilling the same role with the Istanbul-based outfit. Comolli spent seven seasons working as a European Scout for Wilshere’s former club Arsenal between 1996 and 2003; a time when he will have been well aware of Jack’s presence and unique skill-set.
I don’t mind admitting that I had hoped Wilshere’s previously solid working relationship with Roy Hodgson at England level may have worked in our favour during our negotiations but without any open dialogue as to the exact discussions which took place between the club and Jack’s representatives, it’s difficult to know how close we came to making him a Palace player.
There were plenty of suggestions within the press that he was asking for more than £100,000-a-week, which may well have stopped the club’s talks with him dead in their tracks. Whilst we do already have players earning comparable amounts, it’s become clear over the last few weeks that we will need to scale back our spending on wages if we are to remain a sustainable financial entity in the long-term, making a three-year deal for Wilshere of that size was a no-go from the start.
I’m sure we will make signings between now and the closure of the transfer window, it’s just looking less and less likely to be the players who we were linked with in the days that followed the end of the 2017/18 campaign.