Crystal Palace’s lack of a prolific striker has been a topic on the lips of a huge number of fans over the last year or so but according to a report which surfaced over the weekend, the Eagles were keen to land Nantes frontman Emiliano Sala last January, with the deal not completely dead in the water just yet.
Born in Argentina, the 6’2 attacker has carved out a niche for himself in France, starting his career with Bordeaux in 2010 before joining current side Nantes in 2015. Over the last three years, the 27-year-old has played regularly, with a record close to one goal every three games; a return that has provoked a decent amount of interest from across the footballing landscape.
From what I can gather, Sala was extremely keen to leave Nantes for Turkish giants Galatasaray over the summer, with an initial loan until January rejected out of hand by the French outfit. Sala’s plan had seemingly been to head to Instanbul in the hope of impressing the Galatasaray coaching staff enough to earn a permanent deal in the new year. For reasons known to the Nantes hierarchy, negotiations never truly got off the ground but ahead of the January window, it would no surprise if Sala was once again edging towards the exit door.
According to the report from L’Equipe, both Palace and Brighton had shown an interest in him back in January when talks over a new deal with the Ligue One outfit had stalled, only for the man himself to turn both of us down. Whilst that is likely to have turned some at Palace off the idea of returning to the negotiating table, Hodgson’s lack of firepower up top is likely to force our hand in the winter window.
So far, Sala has given no indication whatsoever that he’s open to a move across the channel but with his time at Nantes clearly not built upon solid foundations, we may try to test the water once Christmas is out of the way.
Watch this space.