Only a couple of days ago, Crystal Palace pulled the plug on talks with Liverpool over the potential loan signing of striker Dominic Solanke following fears that the 21-year-old wouldn’t be match fit for the first few weeks of any stint in SE25 but now, the Eagles are being spoken about as potential suitors for Sunderland’s in-form frontman Josh Maja.
The 20-year-old Lewishman-born goalscorer has been on the Black Cats’ books since 2015, after they reached an agreement with his then club Fulham where he was formally registered as an academy player. Initially, he had played youth football with Crystal Palace, as well as Manchester City but it was the North East outfit who showed real faith in him.
Told a number of clubs including Crystal Palace, Huddersfield and Man City interested in Josh Maja. Sunderland forward has rejected Sunderland’s new contract offer. Also has interest from overseas
— Ed Aarons (@ed_aarons) January 4, 2019
In May of 2016, Maja signed his first professional contract at The Stadium of Light and he hasn’t looked back since, with the club’s drop into the third tier of English football providing him with the perfect opportunity to showcase his skills from week to week. At the time of writing, the centre-forward has a tally of 15 goals across 28 appearances in all domestic competitions this season, with an average of one strike every 129 minutes.
Admittedly, the jump from League One to the Premier League is a huge one but at such a young age, there seems to be real belief across the game that Josh is the real deal. With the player himself having stalled over talks of extending his stay at Sunderland, a number of bigger clubs are making their interest known and with Roy Hodgson’s Eagles known to be in the market for a striker, it could well prove to be a match made in heaven.
Hopefully Josh himself doesn’t hold any resentment towards the club following the brief spell he had playing for us as a youngster, who knows, if he is open to making the move, he could go on to become a hometown hero.
We’ll keep an eye out for any further developments.