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Crystal Palace missed out on World Cup “beast” Harry Souttar

Crystal Palace were heavily linked with Harry Souttar in 2021 and after an impressive performance at the World Cup for Australia, the Eagles may well be wishing they had brought him in.

It was suggested last year that the south London outfit were among a number of suitors for the 6 foot 6 defender, who has established himself as a key player for Stoke City in the Championship in recent seasons.

However, a cruciate ligament injury late in 2021 meant that Palace, among other Premier League sides, were never likely to bring him in, but their interest could perhaps be reignited now that he is back fit and producing stellar performances on the world’s stage in Qatar.

The Stoke star was instrumental to Graham Arnold’s side earning their first World Cup win since 2010 as Australia beat Tunisia 1-0 last week, giving the Socceroos a real chance of qualification from Group D.

As per Sofascore, the former Dundee United man would earn a superb 7.7/10 rating for his performance, which was the joint-highest of any outfield player to feature in the game, which emphasises just how important he was to them picking up the three points.

Souttar produced a defensive masterclass for Arnold’s side, contributing six clearances, three blocks and one last-man tackle in a monumental display which was clearly a significant reason why Australia were able to earn the three points.

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During BBC’s coverage of the game, commentator Danny Murphy described the giant defender as “like Superman,” while journalist Sacha Pisani labelled him an “absolute beast,” so he clearly won over the media with his display.

It is even more impressive that the 24-year-old defender already looks so good when you consider that he has made just one appearance for Stoke in the past year, which came in the League Cup this season.

Souttar would earn an impressive 8.09 rating from WhoScored as the Potters beat Luton in the League Cup and if he continues his strong recent form when the Championship resumes after the World Cup, it will surely only be a matter of time until he is being touted with a move to the top-flight again.

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While Patrick Vieira has two solid centre-backs to choose from at Selhurst Park in Joachim Andersen and Marc Guehi, the French manager arguably lacks squad depth in this position and Souttar could’ve been great competition in the Eagles’ defence.

After such a dominant display in Qatar, the Eagles may well be wishing that the Australia international had arrived at Selhurst Park before his injury last year.