Why Signing West Ham Goalkeeper Adrian Could Be A Shrewd Business For Crystal Palace
Crystal Palace have made West Ham United goalkeeper Adrian a possible summer transfer target, as per reports from the Daily Mail. The Eagles are in the market for a new shot-stopper and believe that they can get the Spaniard to move to the Selhurst Park ahead of the new season.
Adrian’s situation is a bit complicated at the moment at West Ham. Having been the first-choice at the club for over two years, he lost his No.1 status to Darren Randolph last season and as a result he featured sparingly for the East London club.
With manager Slaven Bilic deciding to bring in another goalkeeper, Joe Hart, on loan from Manchester City earlier this week, first-team opportunities are bound to reduce for the 30-year old. Following his recent dig at the Hammers’ co-chairman David Sullivan on Twitter, he may well be sent out by the club.
Adrian joined the club in 2013 from Spanish La Liga side Real Betis and soon established himself as the preferred option between the sticks ahead of the incumbent Jussi Jaaskelainen. Till date, he has played a total of 123 games for West Ham in four seasons, in which he has managed a total of 33 clean sheets.
However, last season was a personal low for him in terms of games played for the Hammers, as he made only 16 Premier League appearances, with Bilic often preferring new signing Randolph in goal. Adrian held on to 6 shut-outs in his 16 games, conceding 25 times in the 2016/17 season. The 30-year old averaged 3.13 saves per game last season in the Premier League which is the third best in the competition for any keeper who has played over 15 league games, with only Jordan Pickford and Kasper Schmeichel bettering Adrian.
Standing tall at 190cm, Adrian has a daunting presence and has shown that he can come out and dominate the six-yard box. He anticipates things well and is soon to charge down his line in order to thwart an opponent or go for an aerial ball. He can also find his teammates up the field with fairly accurate passes too.
Palace are in need of a new custodian, following the sale of Steve Mandanda to his former club Marseille. The French international joined the Eagles only last summer, on a free transfer and began the season as the No.1, until an injury saw him lose his place in the side to Wayne Hennessey, only to never gain it back. The situation left him frustrated and he forced a move away from the club after issuing an ultimatum.
That leaves the Eagles’ new boss Frank de Boer with just Hennessey and club legend Julian Speroni as the options. The Welsh no.1 did a decent job last season and was particularly impressive towards the end of the season. But Speroni played only two cup games throughout the course of the season, highlighting the need for a new keeper to be brought in.
Adrian may have had an indifferent season, but the 30-year old has proven himself in the Premier League for four years now and has gained a lot of experience. He may not be the biggest names around, but certainly has the ability to challenge Hennessey for the No.1 spot and even make it his own, if given a regular run in the team by the manager.
He may have signed a new two-year contract with the Hammers as recent as May but with the arrival of Hart at the London Stadium, things will not be that straight-forward for him and a move to Palace could turn out to be very beneficial for both the club and the player.