Why Crystal Palace should go for Martin Hinteregger in January
Crystal Palace picked up their first win of the 2019/20 Premier League campaign when they shocked Manchester United 2-1 at Old Trafford.
The Red Devils could not break down a stubborn Crystal Palace side that exploited United’s weaknesses and won the match in injury time, thanks to a goal from Patrick van Aanholt. This was also the Eagles’ first-ever win against Manchester United in the Premier League era.
Roy Hodgson is an experienced manager and continues to do a good job at Crystal Palace. He spent the least of any club in the Premier League—and also sold Aaron Wan-Bissaka without replacing him.
Cashing in on Wan-Bissaka and not replacing him was a risky decision taken by Hodgson, one that could come back to haunt him midway through the season.
Knowing the Eagles were woeful at the back in 2018/19, Hodgson snapped up free agent Gary Cahill, who was released by Chelsea at the end of last season.
Cahill marshalled the defence well and cleared his lines when required against United last weekend, although he should’ve been sent off for denying Anthony Martial a clear-cut scoring opportunity being the last man.
To put things into perspective, Palace simply need more than Cahill if they are to achieve a top-half finish.
The likes of Mamadou Sakho, James Tomkins and Scott Dann are highly inconsistent defenders, so Hodgson should target a top centre-half when the transfer window reopens in January.
Back in June, the Calciomercato had claimed that Palace were interested in signing Augsburg centre-back Martin Hinteregger.
However, a move didn’t materialise and the Austrian international, after enjoying a solid loan spell in the second half of last season with Eintracht Frankfurt, signed a five-year deal with the Eagles.
Martin Hinteregger, 26, managed to make 41 appearances across all competitions for Augsburg and Frankfurt combined, scoring 4 goals in the process.
A strong tackler and a smart reader of the game, the Austrian has the tools to succeed in the English top-flight. He is good in the air, has the required experience under his belt, and his best years are certainly ahead of him.
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The former Red Bull Salzburg man needs to improve his passing and distribution skills but overall, he could seamlessly slot into Hodgson’s system at Palace.
Hinteregger is an established defender in the Bundesliga and has recently signed for Frankfurt. Palace will need to make a massive offer if they are to tempt Frankfurt into selling their star defender in January.