Due to the amount of time it took to replace Roy Hodgson, Crystal Palace didn’t get a chance to sort their contract situation before July 1st.
What’s the situation?
Andros Townsend revealed that the Eagles told those whose deals were expiring that they’d have to wait for a new manager to arrive first.
However, Patrick Vieira was announced on July 4th, by which time 11 players had become free agents.
Wayne Hennessey, Stephen Henderson, Joel Ward, Nathaniel Clyne, Gary Cahill, Mamadou Sakho, Scott Dann, Patrick van Aanholt, James McCarthy, Townsend and Connor Wickham are now officially free agents.
One man looks to be staying
One of these free agents has been spotted training with Vieira’s Crystal Palace – Clyne.
An eagle-eyed fan spotted the right-back at the club’s training ground in Beckenham, as the south Londoners released footage from Vieira’s first session.
See Clyney there… looks like he’ll be staying on then 👀 pic.twitter.com/sUpCoENNBr— ben (@BDCPFC) July 6, 2021
Clyne – who Liverpool once paid £12.5m for – does not seem to be joined by any others who were released by Crystal Palace.
In that respect, you could argue that Vieira has already made his mind up on the 30-year-old, and wants him to stay.
That is a wise move, in our view.
Ward has also departed, and Nathan Ferguson still isn’t fit for action, so the right-back department is looking pretty thin.
Hopefully, this doesn’t mean Ward will leave for good. The 31-year-old would be due a testimonial, should he stay on until 2022.
After all he’s done for Crystal Palace, it’s the least he deserves.