BY ANDREW McSTEEN
The long-running pursuit of West Bromwich Albion’s right-back Nathan Ferguson by Crystal Palace is set to continue after Eagles’ manager Roy Hodgson confirmed he is still interested in signing the long-term replacement for Aaron Wan-Bissaka, who left South London exactly one year ago.
A transfer window signing in January for a reported £8 million broke down due to a knee injury – which was operated on in February – but the 19-year-old has rejected a new contract and will leave the Midlands club on June 30, with a tribunal set to decide any possible transfer fee.
“Nathan is one of the players we were keen to bring in in January and it didn’t work out due to the injuries, but, of course, he is still very much on our radar,” said Hodgson ahead of the trip to Liverpool for their clash tonight.
“He has great potential and has the sort of qualities that we are looking for, and that is why we tried to sign him.”
While on the subject of potential transfers, and in what will be a very different transfer period between this season and next, Hodgson gave an insight into the type of player – and person – he wants the club to sign.
“There are lots of other players [on the radar] because of the work (sporting director) Dougie Freedman has been doing all year, and more than that really in the three years since we joined up together,” he said.
“This work has all been in relation to the type of player we think Crystal Palace need, the type of player we think would be good at Crystal Palace and those that make our squad stronger and help out the very good 11 we have at the moment.
“I would say the record we have in that at the moment is very good. All the players who have come in – Gary Cahill, James McCarthy, Max Meyer, Jordan Ayew and Vicente Guaita – have all come in and done a fantastic job, made us stronger and yet they have been ‘Palace’ players.
“That is the important thing; they have fitted in so well with the ethos that the club tries to promote and protect and that will be very much in Doug, mine and Steve Parish’s (chairman) minds going forward.
“It is not the question of we are going to bring a player in because he happens to be 20 years of age, we are going to bring a player in who will be the right man to come and help us become a better football team I hope – whatever age he happens to be.”
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