Crystal Palace should use Patrice Evra blow to fuel Robbie Brady pursuit

Crystal Palace manager Sam Allardyce

The Juventus left-back is looking increasingly unlikely to join Crystal Palace in January but rumours of a potential Robbie Brady move are still alive.

Sam Allardyce is not a man willing, or able, to hide his disgruntlement. He was more than willing to admit that Crystal Palace are now embarking upon their second-choice transfer targets after discovering that a fierce relegation battle does not exactly encourage potential newcomers to sign on the dotted line.

Therefore, reports in the Evening Standard that Lyon have the edge in the battle for veteran left-back Patrice Evra is likely to elicit a drawling, Brummie groan from the embattled gaffer. The publication reports that the 35-year-old would prefer to finish his career in France 12 years after leaving Monaco for Manchester.

However, while Evra’s experience on and off the pitch could have been crucial for a side badly lacking a left-back, there is a reason United were willing to let the perennial title winner leave in 2014.

Patrice Evra of Juventus

Any regular Old Trafford matchgoer will tell you that the Frenchman was little more than a defensive liability in his final few seasons in the North West with opponents frequently taking advantage of his poor positioning and inability to track back after a trademark forward burst.

Such characteristics are unlikely to impress Allardyce, a man who prides himself on defensive organisation and whose side have conceded soft goals all too often this season.

However, Palace should use this latest rejection as an opportunity to intensify their approach for a player who could offer more at either end of the pitch.

Norwich's Robbie Brady celebrates scoring their first goal

The Guardian reported earlier in the month that the Eagles were confident of signing Norwich City’s Robbie Brady and, while the trail has gone cold somewhat of late, his excellent set-piece delivery and pinpoint crosses could get the best out of Christian Benteke.

Meanwhile, Brady's energy and versatility means he could be a far more useful addition than the ageing Frenchman.

He would cost Palace a lot more, certainly, but Premier League survival is priceless.

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