On the day of our first home game of 2018 we bring you the latest views of Steve Parish from his column in today's match programme against Burnley.
Firstly I’d like to welcome the players, staff and supporters of Burnley. Our opponents have had a magnificent season to date, so this will be an intriguing encounter at a full Selhurst Park.
The transfer window is now open for business and Dougie, the coaching staff and I are working tirelessly to identify and secure the right opportunities. We know we’re a little thin in some areas of the squad, but we have to react to the situation we find ourselves in with multiple injuries sustained over the festive period making the task that bit harder.
The last six weeks has been unforgiving with the volume of games, and it’s bitterly disappointing to lose Jason and Scott for the rest of the season. I’m sure everyone here today wishes them well for a speedy recovery, and also that Mamadou, Joel, Andros, Jeffrey, Ruben and Connor will be back in contention soon.
If you cast your minds back to this exact time last year, after 22 league matches we were we on 16 points and went on to spend a record amount in the January window by signing Jeffrey, Patrick, Luka and also Mamadou on loan. We will once again spend what we can, and bring in players of appropriate value that will improve the squad sufficiently, and be of the right character, to give ourselves the best chance of pulling away from the relegation zone.
The investment in personnel and infrastructure continues off the pitch too. Dean Kiely has joined the backroom staff as goalkeeping coach, and brings with him 21 years of playing experience in the top divisions. We wish him a warm welcome back to south London.
Later this month we are also submitting our redevelopment plans for Selhurst Park to Croydon Council. If you haven’t already seen the proposals, please visit stadium.cpfc.co.uk and share any feedback you may have.
As we saw on New Years’ Eve, we are not afraid of anyone in this league. I thought our approach to Manchester City was just fantastic, with total commitment and desire from everyone, just two days after another tireless performance against Arsenal. The team threw themselves at City, demonstrated by 10 shots, four corners and a penalty won, which is more than any other side have achieved against them this season.
Credit to Roy and the players who then went and secured a hugely important win away at Southampton. If we’d have been offered four points from those three games in six days I think we’d have taken it, but I can’t help feeling once again that we deserved more.
There’s a long way to go and plenty more twists and turns, but let’s hope with your incredible support we can continue to move up the table.
Up The Palace!