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Have Crystal Palace Focused Too Much On Strengthening Their Attack This Past Transfer Window?

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Snehanjan Banerjee
Snehanjan used to a former columnist at The 4th Official. Fan of KK, Cricket and Liverpool (in no particular order).

A busy summer transfer window was always expected from Crystal Palace this term considering the up and down last season they underwent the last term. Rollercoaster form, a series of impressive results followed by another series of total disaster- these are traits of any team managed by Alan Pardew and the Eagles are no exception. It was an eventful transfer window for the South London club.

Crystal Palace made five major signings during the transfer window bringing in players like Steve Mandanda, James Tomkins, Christian Benteke, Andros Townsend and Loic Remy (on loan). The only big departures were Yannick Bolasie and Dwight Gayle but overall Crystal Palace looks an improved side compared to the last season.

Now the question is, did Palace focus too much on attack this summer? Alan Pardew did reinforce his attack with the likes of Benteke and Remy arriving at the club but considering Adebayor, Gayle and Chamakh all left the club, the arrival of two quality strikers is not at all too much. Crystal Palace have three strikers right now in the form of Connor Wickham, Christian Benteke and Loic Remy and that is far from ‘too much’.

LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 27: Lewis Grabban of AFC Bournemouth takes the ball away from Christian Benteke of Crystal Palace during the Premier League match between Crystal Palace and AFC Bournemouth at Selhurst Park on August 27, 2016 in London, England. (Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND – AUGUST 27: Lewis Grabban of AFC Bournemouth takes the ball away from Christian Benteke of Crystal Palace during the Premier League match between Crystal Palace and AFC Bournemouth at Selhurst Park on August 27, 2016 in London, England. (Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images)

Palace’s target this season should be contending for a top-half finish and the teams they will have to contend with for achieving that include the likes of West Ham, Southampton, Stoke City and Everton . If you compare Crystal Palace forward line with some of those clubs, the results aren’t too heavily one-sided. So, it will be wrong to conclude that Pardew focused too much on attack.

What would be a fair conclusion is Crystal Palace did not focus on defence as much as they should have. The Eagles had been leaking away sloppy goals since the turn of the New Year which took them to 15th at the end of the season from 5th after the first half. Palace are both short on numbers and quality at the heart of the defence and Pardew has to take the blame for it.

Scott Dann is a quality central defender but Damien Delaney, at the age of 35, is well past his prime. James Tomkins is a decent addition but he is far from what Crystal Palace needed. Letting an experienced defensive midfielder like Mile Jedinak depart the club and not getting a replacement for the Aussie was another poor move by Pardew. The South London club failed to add quality to their backline but that does not mean they focused too much on attack.

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