Crystal Palace have reached a £1 million deal with Derby County for the signing of emerging youngster Luke Plange.
According to BBC Sport journalist Simon Stone, Crystal Palace are set to hand Derby County a massive reprieve by securing the services of Luke Plange. The Championship outfit are in financial disarray and have until March to prove they have enough funds to get through to the end of the season.
It essentially means Derby County are looking for an immediate financial boost, and it appears Palace are set to provide just that by signing Plange. The Rams have already accepted the Eagles’ £1 million offer that ensures Plange will remain at Derby on loan during the remainder of the season before moving to Palace in the summer.
Formerly of the Arsenal academy, Plange joined Derby last summer and was drafted into the club’s reserve side. However, their subsequent financial crisis has made the youngster a vital first-team player for the Rams, especially in recent weeks. He has even become the club’s main centre-forward, netting three goals in eight Championship matches.
After being deducted a total of 21 points for breaching the FA’s financial regulations, Derby County are embroiled in a relegation scrap this season. Manager Wayne Rooney has done a wonderful job to help his team move out from the bottom of the Championship table recently, and there is a substantial chance of evading the drop should they continue to perform well.
However, the ongoing January transfer window poses a great threat for Derby, with clubs keen on snapping up their star players. Palace have been no exception, as they set their sights on Plange, who has been one of the revelations in the Championship this year.
The Eagles have had a quiet window so far, failing to sign a single player. They were linked with a move for Aaron Ramsey earlier in the month, but the Welshman is set for a move to Rangers on deadline day. The addition of Plange, therefore, could serve as a breath of fresh air for coach Patrick Vieira, although he might have to wait until next season to work with the youngster as he is likely to be loaned back to Derby.
Given the way the youngster has performed lately, there is every indication that he might go on to succeed in the Premier League as well. However, with no less than three strikers competing for a place in the first-team, it might be a smart decision to allow Plange to remain in the Championship, a move that could benefit all three parties involved – none more so than Derby County.