Crystal Palace are reportedly battling it out with West Ham United to sign Burnley winger Dwight McNeil this summer, and the 22-year-old could be an excellent addition at Selhurst Park.
What’s the word?
Following Burnley’s relegation to the Championship, McNeil was perhaps always likely to be targeted by Premier League clubs this summer and it seems as if a potential exit from Turf Moor is now gathering pace.
According to Sky Sports, both Palace and West Ham are in talks with Burnley about a move for McNeil.
They said: “Crystal Palace and West Ham are both in talks with Burnley over winger Dwight McNeil. The 22-year-old has made 134 appearances in the Premier League and is seen as a prime target because of his experience of top-level football, despite his age. McNeil himself is keen to return to the Premier League and is currently considering a number of options.
“However, Burnley are in a strong bargaining position despite relegation. McNeil has two years remaining on his current deal and the club have the option to extend that contract by a further year. They are likely to demand a fee in excess of £15m.”
Vieira would love him
Considering Palace have lined up with a target man striker for the vast majority of Vieira’s reign, he would surely love to have a player such as McNeil, who excels at taking the ball down the line and putting in top-quality crosses.
Who will win the race for McNeil?
Odsonne Edouard, Jean Philippe Mateta and Christian Benteke could all benefit from his ability out wide, and to sign a 22-year-old for £15m could represent excellent business if he can live up to his potential and build on an impressive spell with Burnley.
McNeil is a hard worker and would also contribute in defence, as is emphasised by his stats from last season, which placed him in the 99th percentile of wingers for blocks, 98th percentile for interceptions and 88th percentile for tackles.
Therefore, the French manager will be doing all he can to convince the Burnley man to pick South London over east London when he decides on his new club this summer.
AND, in other news: Vieira can finally axe £120k-p/w dud with “no confidence” as CPFC eye £10.2m “talent”…