Hopkin Looking To Curl One…

A regular blog dedicated to Crystal Palace Football Club through the eyes of a fanatical supporter, contemplating everything from results to the colour of Stuart O'Keefe's boot laces…

Archive for the month “April, 2012”

Nathaniel Pinney Released

It has emerged this morning that Nathaniel Pinney has been released by the club.

The South Norwood born striker has been on loan at Blue Square Premier side Ebbsfleet United since November, where he has managed to score six goals in 25 appearances.

With this year being the last covered under his contract, Nathaniel was given the chance to impress Freedman during our last pre-season campaign and the most part he did just that, forcing his way into the thoughts of both the manager and supporters with some spirited performances and a very well taken goal during our home friendly against Norwich. 

Sadly, it wasn’t enough to persuade Dougie that his future lay at the club, and with the likes of Glenn Murray and Jermaine Easter consistently preferred to Pinney, a loan move was agreed to give the youngster the best chance of getting regular first team football.

His efforts were appreciated by Fleet fans, making a real impression when he first moved and playing a key role in some decent results around the turn of the year, but with the loan coming to an end this week, Nathaniel has unfortunately returned to the news that he will not be offered a new contract in SE25.

It’s never nice to hear of players being released from the club, especially when they are still so young. That being said, there is no guarantee that this is the end of the road for Pinney. He need only look at Lewis Grabban, a player deemed to surplus to requirements a few years ago, who is now plying his trade at Rotherham United as an example of what can be achieved if he keeps working at his game.

I’d like to wish Nathaniel the best of luck with his future endeavours and hope that he finds a club where he can settle and get his career back on track.

Kwesi Loving Life At Palace

Kwesi Appiah has only been at the club a matter of months, making four appearances for the first team from the bench, but thanks to his “focussed” twitter persona and humble comments in his dealings with the local press, he’s building quite a reputation amongst the Palace faithful.

His signing typified the long-term outlook that Freedman has been so keen to implement during his tenure as manager, at the age of just 21, Kwesi has already had spells with Ebbsfleet, Peterborough and Margate, with the latter being the venue at which his stock rose high enough to grab the attention of our scouting system.

His incredible haul of 35 goals in just 33 games for the Kent outfit saw a number of clubs declare an interest in the London born frontman, but when speaking to the Croydon Advertiser recently, Kwesi was adamant that he’d made the right decision by joining Palace.

“I am having a ball at Palace. It is a fantastic place to play football. My first day at Palace was quite overwhelming. I had been at that level before with Peterborough, but this time it was a different challenge. I have learnt so much in the few months I have been there from the gaffer (Dougie Freedman) and my team-mates, my game has improved so much in such a short space of time. I owe Margate and Chris Kinnear a lot for getting me to where I am today. It was sad to leave, but the Palace offer was one I just couldn’t refuse.”

Given his limited opportunities for the first team so far, it’s difficult to make an informed judgment on just how good Appiah can become, but it’s fair to say that whenever he has made an appearance, his work-rate and desire have shone through instantly. His performance away to Portsmouth for example, showcased a player full of running and desperate to influence the game, whilst also looking comfortable with the ball at his feet.

There is a rawness to his play, which given the fact that he’s been forced to graft his way back into the professional game after leaving Peterborough is both unsurprising and refreshing. You get the impression that given the chance, he is more than prepared to grab it with both hands, and with a full pre-season under his belt, we could well see him hit the ground running next term.

You only have to take a glance at his Twitter feed to see a man with a point to prove, his thoughts rarely deviate from football, whether it be training, match preperation, games on TV or playing FIFA. His use of the word focussed has spawned somewhat of a trend amongst our fan base, with supporters now regularly using the word to describe their daily musings on the social networking site, and with a bit more hard work, there’s no reason to suggest that his focus can’t elevate him to success with us as his career continues.

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