Why Crystal Palace must sign William Gallas

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Numerous media reports have suggested former Tottenham Hotspur defender William Gallas is holding talks with Crystal Palace over a possible move to the Premier League new boys.

Ian Holloway has brought in nine players over the summer thus far, but only one of his new signings is a recognised defender.

The Bristolian has added quality and quantity to his midfield and attacking options by signing the likes of Jerome Thomas, Dwight Gayle and Marouane Chamakh - who all seem capable of excelling in the Premier League.

However the big worry for the Eagles is that Palace's defence is nowhere near the standard required to play in England's top flight.

Holloway's side were narrowly beaten by Stoke City on Saturday through poor defending - namely by Danny Gabbidon and Chamakh for the first and second goals respecitvely.

In the aftermath of the game, Holloway lamented his defenders and questioned why Chamakh was the only one who made an attempt to close down Ryan Shawcross - even though the former Arsenal striker's challenge was somewhat half-hearted.

Palace's current centre-backs include the aforementioned Gabbidon along with Damien Delaney, Peter Ramage and Paddy McCarthy.

Gabbidon, who former Palace manager Dougie Freedman signed on a free transfer last summer, is - in my opinion - the only centre-back at Holloway's disposal who is able to compete in the Premier League.

Delaney and Ramage are both Championship defenders and club captain McCarthy is still recovering from a troublesome groin injury that saw him miss the whole of Palace's play-off winning campaign.

With that in mind, it is vital that Holloway brings in a defender who is experienced in playing in the Premier League.

Gallas would be the perfect option because he has represented the likes of Chelsea, Arsenal and Tottenham and is also capable of leading and taking responsibility of Palace's defence.

The Frenchman would be able to guide the likes of full-backs Joel Ward, Dean Moxey and Jonathan Parr - who hadn't experienced playing in the Premier League before the start of the season.

Although Gallas' wages will be significantly higher than the majority of Holloway's squad, the 36-year-old may be the difference between Palace staying in the Premier League or returning to the Championship.

Palace would reap the benefits financially if they were to survive the drop, so Holloway must take the gamble and go all out to bring Gallas to Selhurst Park.

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Tottenham Hotspur
Premier League
William Gallas
Crystal Palace

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