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Forget It Frank de Boer – Crystal Palace Are Better Off Without This Former Arsenal Defender

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Bacary Sagna

Why Crystal Palace Should Not Go For This Former Arsenal and Manchester City Defender

Following a managerial conundrum since Sam Allardyce’s step down as Crystal Palace boss last season after avoiding a relegation scare, the Eagles have not been much active in the transfer window as they struggled to find his replacement.

The management took a while to announce a new gaffer and finally replaced the veteran Englishman with Dutch legend Frank De Boer.

De Boer, whose short stint with Serie A giants Inter Milan ended in a disappointment, has welcomed the new challenge to restore his managerial career with the struggling Eagles. The London outfit released a couple of big names (Joe Ledley and Mathieu Flamini) at the end of previous season and veteran custodian Steve Mandanda has returned to his former club Marseille.

Palace have been keen on signing defenders and Porto centre back Bruno Martins Indi who had a decent loan spell last term with Stoke City is on the radar. If reports are believed to be true, the Eagles are closing in on the Dutch international.

Also, they have eyed a few other options and former Arsenal and Manchester City right back Bacary Sagna has been the other  name that has been linked recently. The 34-year French international is a free agent after being released by the Citizens who joined them back in 2014 on a Bosman transfer from Arsenal. Sagna, however, had a sporadic first team role and was mostly used as a deputy of Argentine Pablo Zabaleta in his three-year spell.

Sagna was introduced to Premier League football back in 2007 by Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger, who used his contacts in France to acquire him from Auxerre. He spent seven campaigns with the Gunners’ and went on to make 284 appearances across all competitions.

He was known for his pace and attacking intent down the right flank along with cut insides and crossing traits. But his performances degraded with time, as he struggled with his overlap runs, link up play and lack of defensive contribution. In recent years, Sagna has found it hard to track back and eventually exposed his defence during counter attacking threats.

Crystal Palace, who are plotting a move for the veteran right back, should consider other options if they wish to re-establish themselves as a stable mid-table Premier League outfit. They already have the likes of Joel Ward and Martin Kelly who have been performing consistently and the addition of Sagna, who is in his thirties, will neither be an upgrade nor a long-term solution for the betterment of their current status. New gaffer Frank De Boer must consider his options rationally if he wishes to leave an impact in his first season in English football.