Why Crystal Palace should have gone all out to sign Michy Batshuayi
According to a report from The Express, Crystal Palace were interested in signing Chelsea striker Michy Batshuayi in the summer window. However, Chelsea slapped a £40m price-tag over the striker’s head and the Eagles refused to meet the valuation.
Michy Batshuayi, 25, has endured a frustrating time at Chelsea in the past, since joining from Marseille in 2016. He spent last season on loan with Valencia and Crystal Palace, following a spell at Borussia Dortmund in the 2017/18 season.
The Blues were short on attacking options, having sold Álvaro Morata to Atletico Madrid and opted against signing Gonzalo Higuain permanently, and as the club are currently under a transfer ban, Frank Lampard was hesitant in letting Batshuayi go off this summer.
Batshuayi will compete with Olivier Giroud and Tammy Abraham for a starting spot under Frank Lampard in the 2019/20 campaign.
However, the Belgian striker was not involved in Chelsea’s crushing defeat at the hands of Manchester United at Old Trafford on Sunday. In fact, the 25-year-old didn’t even make the Blues squad, as Lampard opted for Abraham up front and kept Giroud on the bench.
The Belgium international impressed during a loan spell at Selhurst Park last season, scoring 6 times in 13 appearances in all competitions for Palace.
Eagles boss Roy Hodgson admitted that his club would be keen to re-sign Batshuayi had he been available this summer, and Palace were in the market for another striker ahead of the transfer deadline but failed to bring in a forward option on the deadline day.
Hodgson’s side struggled royally for goals last season. It was Batshuayi who delivered when it was most required, showing a potential to become a proven Premier League goalscorer.
He combined very well with the likes of Wilfried Zaha and Andros Townsend during the second half of last season, offering Palace the cutting edge and presence in the box that they lacked in the first half.
Palace have started the new campaign with a 0-0 draw against Everton, as the Eagles failed to take advantage of their numerical advantage after Morgan Schneiderlin was sent off in the second half.
The game also exposed their lack of ruthlessness up top, with Christian Benteke, Jordan Ayew and Connor Wickham proving ineffective yet again.
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That’s where Batshuayi would have made a difference for the South Londoners. Having played last season at Selhurst Park, it shouldn’t have taken him much time to gel in with attackers like Townsend and Zaha.
Batshuayi could have been a remedy to Palace’s chronic goalscoring woes and it’s baffling to see why the Eagles didn’t spend big to sign him. Hodgson will now hope that the club’s failure to sign the Chelsea striker doesn’t come back to haunt the Eagles this campaign.