Crystal Palace: Vieira’s ‘pulling power’ could sign £16.2m star at Selhurst Park

Crystal Palace boss Patrick Vieira giving instructions to his team

Crystal Palace manager Patrick Vieira has ‘a lot of pulling power’ over potential targets such as Dwight McNeil, according to journalist Pete O’Rourke.

The French tactician enjoyed a successful first season in the Selhurst Park dugout, transforming the Eagles’ ageing playing squad and style of play with minimal fuss.

What is the latest news involving McNeil?

A recent report from The Sun has claimed that McNeil could be the next player to join Vieira’s revolution following Burnley’s relegation from the Premier League last term.

It’s claimed that the Clarets want at least £10 million for the highly-rated 22-year-old, while West Ham United are also closely monitoring his situation.

McNeil, who is valued at £16.2m by Transfermarkt, has two years remaining on his current contract at Turf Moor, leaving Burnley in a strong negotiating position, but they have already shown they are open to selling their top stars this summer.

Nick Pope has joined Newcastle United, James Tarkowski has departed for Everton and Wout Weghorst has jumped ship after just six months for Besiktas.

What has O’Rourke said about McNeil?

O’Rourke believes Vieira’s legendary status could help Palace win the race for McNeil’s signature, adding to the ‘exciting young team’ he is building in south London.

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He told GiveMeSport: “Patrick Vieira, we know what a player he was in the Premier League, he’s a Premier League legend, so I’m sure he does have a lot of pulling power for players, and it does look like he is building an exciting young team at Crystal Palace right now.

“He had a good first season in charge and made some good signings as well, so I’m sure if Dwight McNeil was to make the move to Crystal Palace, Patrick Vieira would play a huge role in that, and his pulling power might help him to make that move to London.”

Would McNeil be a good signing?

Former Burnley boss Sean Dyche previously described McNeil as “dangerous” due to his outstanding crossing ability, and not too many people would argue with that assessment.

In 134 Premier League appearances for the Lancashire outfit, the England Under-21 international has racked up 24 goal contributions, yet it’s his work rate off the ball that arguably makes him such a unique talent.

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As per FBref, McNeil has ranked in the 99th percentile for blocks, 98th for interceptions, and 88th for tackles amongst fellow wingers over the last year.

McNeil’s arrival at Palace would provide Vieira with another deadly option in the final third and could help the capital club build on their 12th-placed finish last time out.

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