Mathieu Flamini is staying in London, thanks in large part to one of its natives.
Crystal Palace manager Alan Pardew has convinced the longtime Arsenal midfielder to join his team at Selhurst Park.
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Flamini enjoyed his meeting with the boss, and now he’ll hope to add impact to a center of the park once patrolled by Mile Jedinak.
“He told me I will have to fight for my place, I’m part of a very good team and also an ambitious group. He was telling me he’s counting on me, he wants me to take the lead in that team and to be a part of it as soon as possible.
“As I said before: it’s a very interesting challenge, it’s a very stable club and the owners have very ambitious objectives, which means it’s very exciting.”
Flamini also said he’s excited to team up with fellow French midfielder Yohan Cabaye, and hopefully that helps Palace right the ship.
The Eagles have just one point through five matches despite a modest schedule. They’ve lost to West Brom and Spurs, while drawing Bournemouth, but did beat Blackpool to advance in the EFL Cup.
Next up: away to Middlesbrough on Saturday.
Mathieu Flamini is staying in the Premier League.
The veteran French midfielder, 32, saw his contract at Arsenal expire over the summer and there have so far been no takers. Until now.
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Crystal Palace announced on Thursday that they’ve signed Flamini on a one-year contract and Alan Pardew‘s side have added an experienced leader who will give them extra options in the engine room.
Speaking to Palace’s website about the move, Flamini is happy to take on a veteran role in the team and claimed Pardew was a key factor in him moving to south London.
Flamini played 246 times for Arsenal across two spells and won three FA Cups and played in a UEFA Champions League final for the Gunners. His tireless work rate is his main hallmark and his reading of the game and ability to connect short, sharp passes is often underrated.
With a five-year stint at AC Milan sandwiched in-between his two spells with Arsenal, Flamini brings plenty of nous at the elite level and you often wonder what might have been if injuries had been kinder to him during his time with Milan.
That said, Palace already has Joe Ledley, James McArthur and Yohan Cabaye in the central midfield areas so Flamini may have to bide his time for a regular spot but there’s no doubting this is an excellent pick up to add to the signings of Loic Remy, Christian Benteke, James Tomkins and Steve Mandanda over the summer.
Palace’s spine is definitely stronger than it was last season and now they have to start to put their horrendous record of just two wins in their last 24 Premier League games right.
With the transfer window closed, Premier League teams have turned to out-of-contract players for their squads.
There are plenty of rumored deals out there and we’ll delve into them here as well as give you some names to monitor moving forward.
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Victor Anichebe has already been scooped up by Sunderland, and Marouane Chamakh and Mohamed Sissoko are on trial at West Bromwich Albion today, where the Baggies face the Indian Super League’s Delhi Dynamos.
The Guardian claims that Crystal Palace could land longtime Arsenal man Mathieu Flamini, though the Frenchman is wanted by a number of teams across Europe.
Among the other recognizable and available Premier League names are Stephane Sessegnon, Charles N'Zogbia, Kevin Nolan, Bobby Zamora, Leon Osman, and Junior Hoilett.
Longtime Juventus man Martin Caceres is 29 and was expected to sign with AS Roma once rehabilitated from an achilles injury, but has yet to make anything official. We’re only mentioning the slight possibility because, when healthy, he’s quite good.
Not a lot to love there for those looking for help.
Arsene Wenger will have to sign a handful of new players during the upcoming summer transfer window … right?
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I know, I know — we’ve said that every May for what seems to be going on a decade now, but this time he really has no choice. (OK, so we’ve also said that before.)
Why do Wenger and Arsenal really have no choice this time, you ask? Speaking ahead of his side’s season finale, against Aston Villa on Sunday (10 a.m. ET, on SYFY and Live Extra), Wenger confirmed the impending departures of three tenured leaders once each of their contracts expire this summer — quotes from London24:
“I believe that Mikel Arteta is the captain of the club and has been a great leader.
“All of these players will have to decide if they go on in their careers as a football player or a coach. Tomas Rosicky has been with us for 10 years and I think everybody loves him as well.
“Mathieu Flamini has been an extremely stronger leader on the pitch and off the pitch. We lose three big personalities.”
Arteta, Flamini and Rosicky made 639 combined appearances (all competitions) across 22 combined seasons of service to the Gunners.
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Following their departures, Aaron Ramsey, Santi Cazorla, Francis Coquelin and Mohamed Elneny will be the only central midfielders to make more than three first-team appearances this season, with the oft-injured Jack Wilshere having just made his 2015-16 season debut last month.
Mathieu Flamini‘s contract is up at the end of the season and the Arsenal midfielder is ready to move on.
It seems like the club is too.
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According to a report from Sport Mediaset in Italy, Flamini is eyeing up a move to Major League Soccer this summer and has “several requests from MLS.”
Flamini, 32, has become a peripheral figure this season at Arsenal and has made 24 appearances in all competitions.
The holding midfielder is currently in his second spell at Arsenal after moving to AC Milan in 2008 following a stunning 2007-08 campaign for the Gunners where his stock rose dramatically.
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However the Frenchman has lost his role as the destroyer in Arsene Wenger‘s side recently following the emergence of Francis Coquelin and after the arrival of Mohamed Elneny, plus Jack Wilshere and Santi Cazorla close to full fitness. That means the writing is on the wall for the former French international.
It is highly unlikely any MLS team would offer him a Designated Player deal but with the introduction of Targeted Allocation Money (TAM) perhaps Flamini’s vast experience in England and Italy can be put to use somewhere in MLS a la Nigel de Jong at LA Galaxy.
Then again, MLS certainly isn’t short of combative holding midfielders.