Crystal Palace still 'keen' on signing long-term 20 G/A target

Crystal Palace have been ‘looking for a striker’ amid interest in Arsenal’s Eddie Nketiah, according to journalist Tom Barclay.

The Eagles have long been linked to the 22-year-old and have also reportedly been keeping close tabs on a handful of other marksmen ahead of potential moves when the market reopens.

What is the latest news involving Palace?

Patrick Vieira brought in Odsonne Edouard from Celtic via a £14 million deal last summer after missing out on the signature of Nketiah.

The French tactician also sanctioned a permanent move for Jean Philippe-Mateta in the January transfer window after his loan spell from Mainz 05, but he appears far from satisfied with his attacking options.

Against Burnley, Vieira opted to start without any of Edouard, Mateta and fellow forward Christian Benteke, with winger Wilfried Zaha leading the line instead.

And according to Football League World, Palace are keen on signing Reading hitman Lucas Joao following the conclusion of the current campaign.

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The 28-year-old registered 22 goals and seven assists last term, and although a serious hip injury has limited him to just 14 appearances this season, he has still racked up eight goal contributions.

Nevertheless, Sky Sports revealed that Palace also retained an interest in Nketiah during the winter after their failed summer move, although were once again unable to prise him away from the Emirates Stadium.

What has Barclay said about Nketiah?

Although Barclay admitted he didn’t have any inside information over the Joao speculation, The Sun reporter claimed Palace are still ‘keen on’ Nketiah.

He told GiveMeSport: “I don’t know about that specific link (to Lucas Joao), but I know they’ve been looking for a striker. The Eddie Nketiah interest has been long-held, it looks like his contract’s going to run out at Arsenal, and we’ll see.

“Brighton and Palace are both keen on him, but so are teams in Germany and elsewhere, so that might not happen, but the fact that they are interested shows they are keen on a striker.”

Would Nketiah be a good signing?

Nketiah has found opportunities hard to come by at his boyhood club and is set to leave as a free agent when his contract expires in June.

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But in the few opportunities he has received, the former England Under-21 international has notched up 20 goal contributions in 80 outings for the Gunners, showcasing his potential to be a significant threat in the final third.

If Palace can snap Nketiah up on a free transfer, then it will also be a relatively risk-free signing, allowing Vieira to focus his transfer budget on other areas of the pitch.

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