Crystal Palace are reportedly amongst a host of Premier League clubs lining up a move for Reading midfielder John Swift in the January window.
According to Football League World, the Eagles are one of four top-flight clubs interested in securing the highly-rated 26-year-old’s services after the Royals incurred an impending points deduction.
Swift has entered the final year of his current contract with Reading, but the Championship outfit were hoping a promotion push would be enough to convince their prized asset to put pen to paper on a new deal.
However, with them in discussions with the EFL over a points deduction, climbing out of English football’s second-tier now appears a tall order, meaning Swift could depart over the winter window.
The report states that: “Football League World can reveal a Premier League quartet of Burnley, Wolves, Crystal Palace and Norwich City are all keen on trying to get a deal sorted in the winter window before potentially getting him on a free transfer at the end of this campaign.
“It just remains to be seen, then, if Reading try to sell him in the January with that in mind to at least get some kind of fee.”
Swift rose through the ranks of boyhood club Chelsea before becoming frustrated with a lack of first-team opportunities after he made just one senior appearance for the senior side.
A string of loan spells at Rotherham United, Swindon Town and Brentford led to the Stamford Bridge outfit offering the academy graduate a new contract back in 2016, but he rejected it in order to get regular game time at Reading.
His brave decision earned praise from England boss Gareth Southgate – who worked closely with Swift during his time in charge of the Under-21s – saying he was right to cut ties with the capital club.
“John has done himself a favour leaving Chelsea,” said the national team manager, who was speaking to journalism students at a visit to the University of Derby five years ago (as relayed by BershireLive). “He’s got a great future ahead of him.”
Since arriving at the Madejski Stadium, Swift has become one of the Championship’s star performers, bagging 30 goals and laying on a further 30 assists in 173 appearances for Reading.
And he’s elevated his game to new heights this term. In just nine outings for Veljko Paunovic’s charges, the 5ft 9 dynamo has notched seven goals and provided a staggering five assists, highlighting his top-class potential.
If Palace are able to fend off the competition for Swift’s services, then he will be the second Reading star to move to south London in recent times after Michael Olise joined the Eagles over the summer.
The duo will add some star quality to Patrick Vieira’s squad should they be reunited at Selhurst Park, marking another masterclass in the transfer market for