Crystal Palace courting Lee Chung-Yong and Anthony Modeste
Alan Pardew looks set to be one of the busiest bosses this winter window, as Crystal Palace (9/2 with Coral to be relegated) continue to reinforce their squad and distance themselves from the Premier League drop zone.
The Eagles are said to have Bolton Wanderers wingman Lee Chung-Yong on their radar, as well as Hoffenheim attacker Anthony Modeste and Valencia midfield shield Stephane Mbia, in what would be an ambitious triple swoop.
Palace are reported to have already been rebuffed by Blackburn Rovers over interest in frontman Rudy Gestede, with a mooted £3.5m offer rejected, but could still return for the Rovers sensation.
Pardew appears to have other options, however, and certainly looks set to make additions in offence after stating “asking questions of the opposition further up the field” was crucial in his team’s defeat of Burnley.
“You need to more than just defend well and be disciplined,” added the ex-Newcastle United coach.
The Eagles already have a fine array of forwards at their disposal, with Pardew so far managing to extract the best from the likes of Dwight Gayle, Jason Puncheon and Wilfried Zaha.
However, the London club are currently without schemer Yannick Bolasie, who is representing the Democratic Republic of Congo at the African Cup of Nations, and loan signing Yaya Sanogo is still raw.
With a relegation battle still a possibility, South Korea’s wide playmaker Chung-Yong could certainly be a useful addition. The Taeguek Warrior is on Asian Cup duty, but will be out of contract at the end of this season, making him one of the more realistic targets.
A reliable performer, the right winger has contributed 20 goals and 36 assists in 195 appearances for the Trotters and would surely welcome a return to the Premier League.
Hoffenheim hitman Modeste, meanwhile, looks likely to be a January alternative to Gestede, but Pardew may have to battle West Bromwich Albion for the frontman’s services.
Modeste, who previously enjoyed a spell in the Premier League on loan at Rovers, has struck four times in 11 outings this term and could be prised from the Bundesliga club for a fee of around £5m.
Pardew’s focus may not solely be on attack, however, with the Eagles said to be tracking former QPR anchorman Mbia, who only has a short-term contract with current club Sevilla.
The 28-year-old holding midfielder has been a hit with Spanish side Sevilla but supposedly has an agreement in place that would allow him to leave this winter.
Speaking recently, Mbia’s agent Jean-Paul Ndoumin said: “he wanted the opportunity in this window to discuss a return to the Premier League. He feels the Premier League didn’t see the best of him at QPR and he wants to put that right.”
In a further boost for Pardew, tricky attacker and Eagles academy product Zaha, who is on loan from Manchester United, has also reacted positively to making his return to Selhurst Park permanent, claiming: “coming back to Palace would be great but that’s in the future, so I’ll decide then.”
If Palace pull off this terrific trio of signings, the Eagles may not be such an outside chance at 11/1 for a top 10 finish.