Dan Cook has been speaking on the HLTCO podcast about Crystal Palace’s lack of depth which could cause Patrick Vieira a selection headache.
It may seem a little strange to be speaking about a lack of depth at Crystal Palace as they splashed out £66 million and brought in eight players over the summer, but that’s only half the story as they also lost nine players as free agents.
Will Palace finish in the top half?
On the face of it, Palace have a solid squad of players, which was proved by their start to the season, but now with injuries to James McArthur and Joachim Andersen, their squad depth will be tested – and if the small sample size they have offered up is anything to go by, it could be worrying times until the duo return.
Cook has been speaking about the selection headache Vieira now faces.
“This last few days, at least the last two games, without McArthur against Burnley and without both MacArthur and Andersen against Aston Villa at the weekend, have shone a light on the fact that outside of the first-choice 13 or 14, there is a lack of depth in terms of players that can come in and slot in, in exactly the same tactical style as the one we look to play with when everyone is fit and raring to go.
“So it’s certainly a headache for Patrick Vieira and his coaching staff, it’s the first major one they’re having to deal with. It’s going to be interesting to see how we set up and how our energy levels are against Leeds on Tuesday evening.”
TIF Thoughts on Palace’s squad depth…
It was appearing to be all well and good at Selhurst Park under Vieira, but now that injuries have started to occur, this could prove to be a difficult time to navigate through – particularly at the back, as their depth at centre-back isn’t great. Indeed, Nathan Ferguson is still not fit, Jaroslaw Jach has only ever played once for the club and James Tomkins has started just seven senior games since the start of last season.
Despite their fitness concerns, these injuries may have arrived at a relatively ideal time for Palace as they face Leeds, Southampton and Watford, who are all fighting at the wrong end of the table in their next five matches, so this could be the best time for Vieira to figure out a plan B.