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Crystal Palace must avoid signing Newcastle defender Ciaran Clark at all costs

According to The Telegraph’s Mike McGrath, Crystal Palace are interested in signing Ciaran Clark from Newcastle United.

What’s the word?

It’s claimed Palace are reportedly eyeing up a move for Clark with a view to him replacing Mamadou Sakho, who’s been heavily linked with the Selhurst Park exit.

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Roy Hodgson has managed to get the Eagles out of the Premier League relegation zone and may look for January additions to keep them out of the bottom three and McGrath reports that he could try to steal a march on one of their closest rivals by snapping up Clark from right under their noses.

Worse than Gary Cahill

This just reeks of yet another panic buy, doesn’t it?

Whilst the £4m-rated 31-year-old, whose current deal at St James’ Park ends this summer, wouldn’t necessarily be a bad option as he wouldn’t cost Palace chairman Steve Parish a lot of monet, the Eagles simply must aim to look a little higher in the winter transfer window if they want to improve their squad.

Hodgson has struggled to find consistency alongside Cheikhou Kouyate, with Gary Cahill and Scott Dann battling for the spot, but there are still questions over both centre-backs, while James Tomkins has done very little to impress when called upon too.

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Clark, who has won 34 caps for his country, has provided one goal in 11 appearances across all competitions this season so far, via Transfermarkt.

But Hodgson may be reluctant to pursue a bid if he takes a deeper look at his defensive contributions in terms of the numbers. 3.9 clearances per game in comparison to Cahill’s 4.4, a pass success rating of 79.9% to 86.3% – not exactly figures that scream out that Clark is worth his reported £35,000-per-week wages.

He’s also been criticised in the past for his poor performances while away on international duty with the Republic of Ireland.

With Palace’s squad the oldest in the Premier League at present by a country mile, Hodgson may be better off looking for a considerably younger and more suitable replacement instead.

AND in other news, Crystal Palace missed a trick with Brentford striker Ivan Toney

Article title: Crystal Palace must avoid signing Newcastle defender Ciaran Clark at all costs

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