Alan Pardew has spoken exclusively to Palace TV, giving his thoughts on the topics many Eagles fans have been discussing as the 2016/17 Premier League season nears to a start in just over a week’s time.
1 Will the club be bringing in a new striker? “We’re looking for another striker to come in, hopefully two, because we’re short in that department. It’s a difficult market and it’s going to start moving so we need to be poised for that move. We’ve been linked with a number of players but there’s four or five strikers we could possibly bring to this football club that could take us forward.”
2 What will the new signings bring? “The new players, everybody can see they’re top quality and are good players. Steve Mandanda, James Tomkins, Andros Townsend in particular has given us a lift - he’s been playing, and just watching him in training and seeing what he can do has definitely put pressure on Zaha and Bolasie and they need to respond now. They’ve seen the quality he (Townsend) has and that’s what footballs about, being pushed by other players.”
3 How successful from a playing perspective was the US tour? “I think the American tour was good for us, we had a bit of a hangover from the FA Cup final - as you’d expect we were all disappointed to lose that final so we needed to get that out of our system a little bit and react to it because there’s only one way to react to getting beat in the final and that’s to be better and that’s what we’re going to try and do.”
4 How ready are the players for the start of the new season? “I think after Fulham we need to have a week on the training ground because we were itchy bitty, some good bits, some not so good. So I want to work on the team this week, work on their fitness levels and organisation.”
“Obviously the players are coming back in their bits and pieces from the Euros which went on longer than we’d hope and will be a problem for all the Premier League managers. Joe and Wayne came back Tuesday, Yohan and Steve Wednesday – now we have everybody back which is important because we need to get out spirit right.
“Looking at us I’m confident we should have everybody fit physically for the first game with the exception of Sako and Frazier, but not everybody is going to be up to speed so it’s going to affect the first game a little bit.”
5 We play Valencia at Selhurst Park this weekend, what sort of team can fans expect to see? “On Saturday against Valencia it’ll be the first time we see a lot of our fans since the Cup final, so we hope to put on a decent show against top opposition before we start the campaign.
“Hopefully James (McArthur) will come in to the Valencia thinking and get some minutes, it might be a bit tight for James (Tomkins) because it’s a hamstring and we can’t afford to take a risk so we’ll give that a maximum time. We’ve got plenty of good cover for James though, so we’re ok on that front.”