Alan Pardew has been a busy man on the first day of the summer transfer window, with Andros Townsend and Steve Mandanda arriving at Selhurst Park.
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Townsend, 24, arrives from Newcastle United on a five-year contract after the Eagles triggered the release clause of $17.2 million in his contract, while French international goalkeeper Mandanda, 31, joins the south London club on a three-year deal from Marseille in Ligue 1.
Speaking about his move to Palace Townsend was delighted to be back in the Premier League after being relegated last season with the Magpies, just six months after he joined them from Tottenham Hotspur in January.
“I’m extremely delighted. I had chats with the manager and chairman before I signed and I’m pleased to a part of Crystal Palace’s future,”Townsend said. “By the sounds of things it’s going to be a bright one and I can’t wait to get started.”
Townsend will considerably strengthen Palace’s already stacked options out wide as he will compete with Wilfried Zaha and Yannick Bolasie for a spot on the flanks, which could lead to Bolasie playing centrally.
As for Mandanda, he is a vastly experienced goalkeeper who will push Wayne Hennessey all the way for the starting spot between the posts. He won the goalkeeper of the year award in Ligue 1 last season and in nine years with Marseille he’s won a league title and three French League cups.
With Julian Speroni around as cover, the Eagles needed to strengthen in goal and Mandanda’s arrival does that. He is currently on duty at EURO 2016 with the French national team but has yet to play a single minute as captain Hugo Lloris leads the French side in goal.
Both arrivals signal the intent of Pardew’s team as they started last season strongly and were in and around the top six up until the halfway point of the season. However, just two wins in 2016 saw them slide down the table but they managed to stay up and also reach the FA Cup final where they lost in agonizing fashion to Manchester United.
Palace’s American investors are prepared to spend big and plans are already in place to upgrade their Selhurst Park home. Looks like there’s a bright future ahead for the Eagles.