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First January recruitment is Killian Phillips for the Academy

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(Photo By Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile via Getty Images)

Killian Phillips becomes the first signing for Crystal Palace in the January 2022 transfer window. He joins from Drogheda United who plays in the League of Ireland Premier Division and he looks like a good fit for the academy.

Phillips, who is still only 19, has signed a two-year contract that will see him start his time at the Eagles under Paddy McCarthy who manages the under-23s. He made his first senior appearance for Drogheda United when he was only 18 and that was back in July 2020. Although his main position is in midfield, it’s known that he can also play as a centre-back.

There have been many rumours of who will be the first new Palace player signed in this window, but few would’ve guessed it to be Phillips. Nketiah is still the main name being mentioned to join Palace and that’s probably only a probability if Mateta leaves.

Phillips & McCarthy speaking with PalaceTV

“I’m delighted to be here… I’m proud to be a Crystal Palace player.”

“Paddy (McCarthy) was talking to me about signing for different clubs. He said to me it’s like buying a home: when you walk into the right home you know it’s the right place, and that’s kind of how I felt at Crystal Palace the first day I walked in.”

Paddy McCarthy who manages the under-23s have this to say on Phillip’s arrival: “We are delighted to get Killian on board. He had a great season last year in the League of Ireland with Drogheda United and he fits the profile of young, hungry players we want at our club.”

“We believe Killian has great potential to develop and all the attributes to have a career in the game. He will definitely add to the group both on and off the pitch with his experience of first-team football and I’m sure he will benefit from working with a fantastic group of young, hungry players in a top-class environment.”

You can see Phillips’ first full interview over at Crystal Palace’s website.

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Transfer News

Luke Plange Joins Palace From Derby County

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Luke Plange was the second deadline day signing at Crystal Palace after Mateta finally signed on a permanent deal. This one came out of the blue, his name hadn’t been mentioned in the media at all.

Plange is only 19 and he’s a former Arsenal Academy boy who is currently fighting at Derby Country FC to keep them in the Championship with Wayne Rooney. Luke made his debut for Derby in December and has impressed in the nine senior matches he’s played for the Rams. He’s signed on a 3 and half year deal and he’ll go back on loan to Derby to help them in the relegation battle as they have been deducted 21 points for financial problems.

Although he’s still young, Plange is an all-round striker so we’ll be watching Derby’s matches for the rest of the season to see this prospect. The fact that he’s developing further under Rooney is great as everyone knows what a quality striker he was.

Keep reading to see his interview with Palace TV and comments from the Palace co-owner and chairman.

Comments from Plange & Parish

Plange spoke to Palace TV after signing and this is what he had to say: “I’m very excited to be joining a big Premier League club. I’m ready to crack on. Obviously I’ll be with Derby, fighting for them in the Championship at the moment, but I will be ready to go back to Crystal Palace in the summer and get ready to go.”

Co-owner and chairman Steve Parish also had his say: “Luke is an exceptionally talented young footballer and one we hope will bring a range of attributes to the club in the years to come.

“But first, he has an important role to fulfil playing at Derby, and we appreciate his significance to them in their current circumstances. It is less than 12 years ago that our club was in a similar situation – as a result we were determined to ensure both clubs benefit through this deal. Therefore Luke will return on loan for the remainder of the season and help Derby with their important battles on and off the pitch.

“I look forward to seeing Luke compete in Palace colours soon, and until then enjoy the performances he continues to give for Derby.”

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Transfer News

Palace Sign Mateta on a Permanent Deal

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After reports at the start of the January transfer window, Crystal Palace has now made Mateta’s loan deal permanent. The French striker had 6 months left on his 18-month loan deal and The Eagles were debating whether to allow him to return to Mainz early before he impressed Vieira and the other coaching staff to make them change their mind and instead sign him earlier than expected.

Palace had the option to buy him from His parent club Mainz for €15m in the summer. However, after scoring and assisting in January he has now signed a permanent deal and will stay in South London. By moving earlier, Palace managed to negotiate better terms paying €11m instead of the originally asked for €15m.

January performances

The month of January saw key players away like Zaha and Ayew who were at the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON). This allowed Mateta to get more game time and in this period impress in front of goal and as a team player. 

In the FA Cup 3rd round against Millwall, he easily headed home from one of Olise’s perfect crosses. He’s shown that he’s good on the ball, in the air, and is selfless when is necessary. This was clear in the latest match against Liverpool when he was one on one with the keeper, but instead of shooting himself, he played the ball across to Edouard who then had an open goal and easily converted.

What we think the future holds for Mateta

Mateta is still only 24 so he’s still got a lot to learn and time to progress. With Benteke at 32, he looks to be a great replacement for him when he departs from Palace. But in the meantime, he’s going to bring added competition in the forward area.

He’s good in the air, on the ball, and as we mentioned earlier he’s not selfish with the ball. Vieira and the coaching staff have seen something in him, as we have, and we think he’s going to be a great player at this young Palace side.

We hope an extra order of corner flags has been placed now that he’s staying beyond this season!

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Transfer News

Potential loan deal for van de Beek

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Just as Manchester United let Anthony Martial leave on loan to Sevilla until the end of the season, rumour has it that Donny van de Beek could join Palace until the end of the season. A late move from the Eagles would see him join Patrick Vieira’s side until June and then return to United for the 2022/23 season. The Dutch youngster hasn’t had enough playing time since moving to Manchester United from Ajax, and he’ll be wanting to impress to claw his way into the Netherlands national squad for the Qatar World Cup.

It is said that Ralf Rangnick didn’t want him to leave, but the player seems keen on a temporary move. He’ll be able to get some game time with Palace and prove that he is a capable player. I can already hear the Eagles fans singing the Donny van de Beek chant.

A permanent deal is off the cards

It has been said that the potential loan deal is strictly that, there won’t be an agreement for potentially buying the player in the summer. Although, if he does well for Palace and thinks that he’ll return to Manchester on the bench just like Jesse Lingard, he may force a move away. Then, we’re sure other clubs would come in for him as well and there would be the question of would Palace be able to afford him.

Other teams also interested

As seen in the Tweet above, Palace isn’t the only club interested in bringing van de Beek in on loan. It’s rumoured that Valencia is also in the mix as well as other clubs. But, at this point in time, it looks like Palace is pushing the hardest for the deal.

Summary

With only a few days left in the January transfer window, this deal could go down to the wire, although Palace would like to have it wrapped up as swiftly as possible. With Palace playing some of the best football in years, him not having to move country, and the fact Palace are eager we think should push him in favour of joining the Eagles over other clubs.

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