Crystal Palace chairman Steve Parish has been speaking at length about the club’s transfer policy, admitting that the spending patterns we adopted in the years immediately after winning promotion to the Premier League were unsustainable in the long-term.
The chairman’s words came after he was pressed for an update on the chances of the Eagles landing Chelsea midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek in January, following his successful loan spell with the club last term and whilst Parish didn’t write off our chances of a reunion with the youngster, he did call for caution from supporters over the level of spending they should expect from the club moving forward.
It’s easy, following big-money deals for the likes of Yohan Cabaye, Mamadou Sakho and Christian Benteke, to start feeling as though fees of that size are now the norm for us but in reality, we aren’t a club who are capable of spending that heavily year after year. There is of course still money available in the transfer kitty but windows like the one just gone (when Cheikhou Kouyaté’s £10 million arrival was our biggest outlay) are far more likely to be where we find ourselves for the foreseeable future.
Speaking from a personal point of view, I’d be far happier to see us scouring the market for undervalued players who fit neatly into our system rather than big-money, ready-made stars who end up costing us in excess of what they’re truly worth. The transfer market isn’t and never will be a perfect science but in such a crowded and often outrageous environment, it pays to search thoroughly for an edge over your competitors, rather than relying on household names.
The January window is still too far away to start holding serious discussions over who we may or may not target but in terms of the overall strategy we adopt, it’s fair to say that our spending will be far from lavish.