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 tag “Southampton”

Former Fans’ Favourite Defender Linked With Palace Return

It goes without saying that Crystal Palace fans everywhere love Jose Fonte. The 32-year-old Southampton man was something of a cult hero during his time with us and now, with the transfer rumour mill churning out new stories every few hours, he is being linked with a return to Selhurst Park.

With Alan Pardew having been quite open in expressing his desire to bring in a central defensive partner for Scott Dann ahead of the new league season, Fonte would certainly fit the bill, having proven to be a perfectly adaptable centre-half at St Mary’s, but on the face of it, this story looks to have little to no substance behind it.

No doubt dreamt up on the flimsy premise that the pair’s previous association with one another could be enough to sway Jose into retuning to the club where he first made his name, it smacks of a journalist being pressured to fabricate a potential transfer rumour for the sake of clicks, rather than the result of any genuine inside information.

Of course, I could be badly wrong, with Fonte himself returning to SE25 within a matter of days, thus leaving me looking like an utter fool, but you have to ask yourself why a footballer who is already well on the wrong side of 30 would even begin to entertain a move away from a club who will be competing in European competition next season under the guidance of a truly innovative coach.

I have no doubt that Jose has a special place in his heart for us, but in truth, any hopes of sentiment creeping into his decision making process are likely to a fair way wide of the mark, given what he has on offer to him with Southampton next term.

Let’s hope I’m wrong, but if ESPN’s initial story had got your hopes up, I wouldn’t get too carried away just yet.

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Palace Could Take A Punt On Troubled Italian International Striker

With Crystal Palace actively in the hunt for a new striker this summer, we could well see Alan Pardew making a move for former Southampton frontman Dani Osvaldo, who recently had his contract terminated with the South Coast side.

Still only 29, the often prolific striker was signed for Saints by Mauricio Pochettino, who readily paid AS Roma £15 million for his services in 2013, before leaving St Mary’s for Tottenham himself shortly afterwards.

Since then, Osvaldo has regularly lived up to his reputation as a bad boy, with a number of minor to moderate breaches of discipline culminating in a training ground bust-up with Jose Fonte, which eventually sealed his fate with the club.

Spending time on loan with Juventus, Inter Milan and Boca Juniors since, the notorious troublemaker has done well in front of goal, with the Argentinians supposedly keen to tie him down permanently in the not too distant future, but for Osvaldo himself, the lure of the Premier League still seems to offer a greater sense of excitement in the here and now.

Whilst some will beg the Palace hierarchy to steer well clear of the striker, there is simply no denying that when his head is right, albeit for brief spells over the years, he’s a welcome addition to most sides. Admittedly, we are all at risk of sounding like a deluded future girlfriend in declaring that we may be the team capable of taming his wild streak, but with no transfer fee attached, it could well be too tempting an opportunity to shy away from.

Should we be able to negotiate terms which allow for any contract to be terminated on the basis of a severe breach of club rules, there seems little reason not to take a chance on the striker, given his pedigree in front of goal. Yes, he may be a tad damaged, but we have a long and somewhat random history of harnessing the talents of some of the game’s “stranger” characters.

Perhaps Osvlado is simply the next maniac we usher through our doors, only to see him reborn within six months, forcing others to question why they didn’t spot the potential that we did in him over the summer.

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