Crystal Palace were impressive under Roy Hodgson after enduring one of the worst starts to a Premier League campaign last season. Under Hodgson, the Eagles were cohesive and fluid. The former England manager’s tactical prowess also helped tighten things up at the back.
The Eagles will be aiming to soar higher this season. Crystal Palace have completed the signing of West Ham United midfielder Cheikhou Kouyate for an undisclosed fee. The Senegalese international who captained his country in Russia has joined the Eagles on a four-year contract that will keep him at the club until 2022.
Kouyate made a total of 129 appearances in all competitions for the Hammers, scoring 12 goals. He has also been capped 42 times by the national team.
Roy Hodgson has also signed German attacker Max Meyer. The 22-year-old was without a club after opting against renewing his contract at Schalke.
The Eagles look strong and confident ahead of the new campaign. Here we take a look at their best possible XI including new signings Kouyate and other transfer targets.
The 31-year-old has joined Crystal Palace and should fight it out with Hennessey for the first-team spot. A clever signing.
The Dutchman scored 5 goals and provided 1 assist in 28 appearances last season. He was one of their main threats down the left flank. Aanholt could hit higher numbers this season.
Tomkins scored 3 important goals for the Eagles last season and that played a crucial role in keeping them out of the relegation zone. The centre-back is the Eagles’ defensive leader.
The former Liverpool defender has been impressive since making the move to Selhurst Park. He was a rock at the back for the Eagles last season.
Dann was a huge attacking threat down the right flank last season, making marauding runs into the opposition box and whipping in crosses. He was able to provide just 1 assist but could improve on that this season.
The Eagles’ go-to man for set-pieces and penalties. Milivojevic was a regular on the scoresheet and flourished under Roy Hodgson. He was an integral member of the squad last season and that should be the case this season too.
The arrival of Kouyate should see the Palace midfield receive a sense of stability in the middle of the park. Kouyate possesses impressive work rate which will allow him to contribute defensively and charge forward on counters.
The versatile German is capable of playing a wide number of roles up front. He should slot into a central attacking midfield role. The attacker is capable of stretching defenders out of position and playing a supporting role behind the striker.
Palace’s best player last season, Wilfried Zaha was at his tantalising best as he contributed with 9 goals and 3 assists in 29 appearances. The Ivorian thrived as a striker under Roy Hodgson.
The Norwegian was impressive after making the move to Selhurst Park in January. But he was deployed as a winger due to Zaha’s devastating form as a striker. Sorloth should be allowed to lead the line this time out after Benteke failed miserably last season.
Townsend was one of the Eagles’ main source of supply down the right flank. He scored 2 goals and provided 7 assists last season.