Win or lose today, there are going to be Crystal Palace and Watford players who attract interest from bigger Premier League sides.
That makes it difficult for the winners to retain and add to their squad ahead of next season and it makes it difficult for the losers to keep their side together, re-build and go again in the Championship next year.
Here are five players who may all find their way to a new Premier League side for next season, win or lose this afternoon.
The Czech striker has been on loan from Udinese and the big hope at Watford is that they will be able to keep him beyond the summer.
If he plays in this match like he did in the semi-final second leg then don’t be surprised if another top flight side goes straight to the source, with a big bid to Udinese which would make it all the more difficult for Watford to keep their star man.
Abdi finds himself in a very similar position to Vydra in the respect that he’s had a huge impact while on loan from another club.
Abdi is the guy who has made the Watford midfield tick this season in the Championship with 12 goals and nine assists showing how effective he can be, pulling the strings in the middle of the park.
Crystal Palace forward Glenn Murray is a typically bullish and hard working centre forward who could easily warrant a move to a bigger club.
He’s injured for the play-off final but that won’t stop some big Premier League sides from taking a look at him. He’s scored 30 goals in 42 Championship games this season and he could effectively lead most frontlines of sides in the bottom half of the Premier League.
Parr is arguably the best defender at the club right now and his age and versatility make him a very good potential investment.
Parr started 33 games in the regular season and even provided four assists in the final third, which you wouldn’t expect from a defensive player. He’s shown remarkable consistency and an ability to stay fit. His contract expires next summer.
Bolasie has been forced to compete with Wilfried Zaha to become the most prominent winger at Palace.
He’s done a very effective job with three goals and seven assists from 43 appearances over the course of the season. The fact he’s managed to have an impact while Zaha’s been at the club speaks volumes about his quality and will definitely interest one or two top flight teams.
Both sides are very lucky in the respect that they have managers in Gianfranco Zola and Ian Holloway who fight for their best players, making it as difficult as possible for other big sides to poach them.
Do you think any of these players will end up with a big Premier League team next season?
image: © joncandy