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Crystal Palace have confirmed the arrivals of five new youth-team players – including ones formerly of Arsenal, West Ham United and Southampton.

Alfie Matthews (Arsenal), Reece Hannam (West Ham) and Harlem Hale (Southampton) have each completed moves to Selhurst Park, alongside Sion Spence (Cardiff City) and James Taylor (Bristol City), after successful trial spells.

The Crystal Palace academy was recently upgraded to Category One status, the highest achievable in English football.

And Matthews, Hannam and Hale have each appeared at that level for Arsenal, West Ham and Southampton, respectively.

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Matthews, an attacking midfielder, was linked with a move to Newcastle United earlier this summer.

He – alongside Hannam, a left-back, Hale, a winger, Spence, a number 10, and Taylor, a central midfielder – appeared in Crystal Palace Under-23s’ friendly win against Tonbridge Angels last month.

Matthews, from Romford, posted the following message on Instagram after his departure from Arsenal earlier this summer.

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Hannam signed for West Ham on scholarship forms in 2017, while Hale spent the latter half of his teenage years at Southampton, having previously been on the books of another of Crystal Palace’s Premier League rivals, Chelsea.

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