Friday, September 29, 2023

Is This Dutchman The Solution To Crystal Palace’s Attacking Woes?

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Pranjal Bhawal
Pranjal is the co-owner of The 4th Official. While he completed law from Department of Law, University of Calcutta, his passion always remained in football and that is where he finally ended up at.

Crystal Palace’s move for out of favour Liverpool forward Christian Benteke seems to have hit a dead end as the two clubs failed to agree on a fee for the Belgian international. However, the dire need for the Eagles to bolster their attacking ranks is quite evident and Alan Pardew has certainly started looking elsewhere.

According to Dutch newspaper Voetbal International, Dutch side Utrecht wants €8m for striker Sebastien Haller who is a prime target of the South London club thanks to his incredible showing in Dutch football over the last one and half year. Despite improving the club’s goalkeeping, defensive and wide attacking options with players like Mandanda, Tomkins, and Townsend, the biggest weakness is yet to be looked at and that is the centre-forward option.

Is Haller capable of healing the club’s woes in front of goal? We would say yes! We have rarely seen excellent performers in Eredivisie fail to hit the top gear in the Premier League. Of course, there are exceptions but Haller looks destined to succeed in English football. The Frenchman possesses a big frame of 6’2” and is quite strong and that will help him to settle in the Premier League with ease.

Haller is right now one of the most prolific forwards in Dutch football and his proficiency in front of the goal is exactly the missing recipe at Selhurst Park. The South London club had big troubles in terms of goal scoring last campaign. Plenty of questions have been asked to Pardew and Haller could well be the answer.

Over the last 18 months, Haller has been one of the most consistent strikers in Eredivisie for a side like Utrecht where he does not truly get the right support. With creative players like Cabaye, Townsend, Puncheon, Zaha, Bolasie et al behind him, the Frenchman’s goals are unlikely to dry down and rather it could improve big time as he settles into the Premier League.

From just 59 games for the Eredivisie side, Haller boasts an amazing record of 35 goals and 11 assists. First joining the Eredivisie club on loan from his boyhood club Auxerre, the move was made permanent after the Frenchman’s massive immediate impact.

Haller is a target man by trait but possesses a decent pace and good dribbling abilities. The Frenchman is quite mobile up front and is the ideal forward to complement the pacey wingers like Bolasie and Townsend. For just €8m, the French under-21 international would be a brilliant coup from the Eagles.

This article is written by Craig Kester.

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