There are reports linking Crystal Palace with a deadline day move for Everton midfielder James McCarthy. Sky Sports understand that the Eagles have registered an interest as an alternative to Jack Wilshere if the Arsenal midfielder chooses to move elsewhere.
Where would he fit in at Selhurst Park?
Crystal Palace need another option in central midfield after the departure of Mile Jedinak. The club have an array of attacking players, but lack those with tenacity in the middle of the park. Joe Ledley and James McArthur are both decent Premier League players, but neither are able to dominate games. McCarthy is great at winning the ball back and isn’t scared of a physical battle.
If Palace managed to sign McCarthy, he would provide aggression and work rate to the midfield, which the club have needed during the opening two matches. They have struggled to win the ball back in midfield areas, causing doubts about the current options at the club. During his spell at Everton, McCarthy has been impressive and he would be a great pick up for Crystal Palace.
How much would he cost?
This is a difficult question as Ronald Koeman doesn’t see him as a starting midfielder for Everton. Even so, the club won’t be keen on selling him on the last day of the transfer window, especially as there isn’t great squad depth at the club. The player himself is interested in a move to gain first team football and could force the issue.
Palace were linked to McCarthy on Sunday and at that time, the asking price was £20 million, which Alan Pardew wasn’t prepared to pay. This is a big price for a player that isn’t seen as a starter at Everton and given the other options available to Palace, it isn’t worth it. There are still players available and Palace should look elsewhere, unless the asking price is reduced.
How likely is this deal?
Everton don’t want to sell McCarthy, which means it will take a huge bid to get a deal done. Palace have already spent a lot in this window and won’t want to spend £20 million on the Irishman. However, time is running out and they are getting desperate. I don’t expect the deal to happen, but it is one to keep an eye on.
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