Marcus Bent insists that Gary Cahill cannot be allowed to leave Crystal Palace this summer.
The central defender is poised to depart the club upon the expiration of his contract at the end of the month.
The 35-year-old moved to in 2019 and made a total of 47 appearances for the Eagles following his free transfer from Stamford Bridge.
Even last season, Cahill played 20 times in the Premier League, scoring once, and Bent believes that the ex-England international should be retained by the club.
Indeed, he cited the example of former Leicester City defender Matty Elliott, who played for the club until the age of 36.
Speaking exclusively to Football FanCast, he said: “I find it harsh that he went from Chelsea at that time because they made him captain. I found it harsh but Jose decided to bring in other players. Gary lives down the road, he’s still fit, he looks fit, he’s 30, will he drop down the leagues?
“I’d like to think not because he’s still got a lot of quality to bring to the Premier League, and he’s got a lot of quality to bring to Crystal Palace.
“I think if anything, I think Palace need to bring in someone that needs to play around him because his brain, his legs, his body are still working really well, he reads the game well, his experience, you need a centre-half.
“I played with the likes of Matty Elliot, he played until he was 36 at Leicester, being the captain, as long as you’ve got players around him and that experience around them and that quality around them, I think they can give everything back, doesn’t mean they’re going to start every game or play every game throughout the season but you still need to have that within the dressing room, still need to have that within the squad.
“To let him go would be a disaster for me.”
Cahill has enjoyed a long and storied career and is a seasoned winner, lifting two Premier League titles, two FA Cups, two Europa Leagues, the Champions League and the League Cup.
He also won 61 caps for England, playing at the 2014 World Cup and Euro 2016.