Crystal Palace have reportedly entered the race for Odsonne Edouard and he could be a gamechanger for them in the years to come.
According to The Telegraph, Premier League side Crystal Palace have joined the race for prolific Celtic striker Odsonne Edouard.
The 23-year-old is currently in the final year of his contract and has attracted attention from several Premier League sides. The likes of Leicester City, Brighton and Hove Albion and Wolverhampton Wanderers are all keen, but none of them has yet made a bid for his services.
In the summer, Arsenal legend Patrick Vieira took over from Roy Hodgson as the manager of Crystal Palace and is now eyeing the Celtic star to supplement his attack at Selhurst Park. Edouard has established himself as a clinical striker at Celtic Park, scoring 85 goals and assisting 39 more in 175 games.
Also capable of playing on the right-wing, Edouard is just what Palace need – an infallible scorer. The Eagles have struggled to find the back of the net in the last two seasons and were amongst the league’s poorest scorers. Bringing in a clinical striker will take the weight off Wilfried Zaha, making them a tougher outfit to prepare against.
In Eberechi Eze, Zaha and Michael Olise, Vieria possesses a formidable midfield trio that can fashion his strikers’ opportunities. However, Christian Benteke, Jordan Ayew or even Jean-Philippe Mateta aren’t goal-scoring machines, and Palace could do with a player who is clinical upfront. In Edouard, they would be getting just that, and he could make a massive difference for them this season.
At 23, he is primed to take the next step in his career, and a move to Palace would be somewhat of a coup for the Londoners. Possessing excellent dribbling and finishing skills, the Frenchman is also good in the creative aspect and can fashion chances for those around him. He could be exactly what Palace need to get the best out of their attacking midfielders.
Edouard scored more goals and made more assists on his own last season than all three of Palace’s strikers put together. He also averaged 3.5 shots per match while possessing a healthy pass completing percentage of 80. It is a significant improvement over Benteke and Mateta, who managed just 58 per cent and 61 per cent respectively.
The Frenchman also averages 1.2 key passes per game, once again better than all three of Palace’s strikers put together. He will be a massive upgrade in more ways than one. The arrival of Marc Guehi and Joachim Andersen has strengthened their backline while Olise and Conor Gallagher (on loan) add quality to the midfield.
Adding Edouard to the squad will give Vieira a solid spine to build on for the upcoming decade. Whether they can get the deal over the line remains to be seen. However, they might have to stave off competition from Premier League rivals West Ham United, who are also particularly keen on the Frenchman.
With no viable competition for Michail Antonio in the No. 9 slot, David Moyes & co. are in the market for a new striker, with Edouard among the names being considered. But, with Palace also entering the fray, it now remains to be seen who comes out on top in the race for the 23-year-old.