It would be an understatement to say that Connor Wickham has had a tough time at Selhurst Park in recent years.
The former Ipswich striker suffered a serious knee injury in November 2016, an incident which has seen him make just 12 Premier League appearances since the end of that 2016/17 campaign, with none of those being starts.
Wickham failed to even make a single Premier League outing in the 2017/18 season, and there has been talk of him returning to Sheffield Wednesday on loan this month – Roy Hodgson basically said that it is down to what the forward wants to do in his press conference on Monday.
— George Sessions (@GeorgeSessions) January 20, 2020
While a consistent run of games away from the club comes with positives, seeing as he has Jordan Ayew, Cenk Tosun and Christian Benteke to compete with at Selhurst Park, the Eagles should keep him around on the back of some effective performances of late.
Admittedly, the 26-year-old has only made six substitute appearances in the league so far, playing a total of 92 minutes, but his impact has often been notable.
Wickham stepped off the bench against West Ham on Boxing Day to play the last 15 minutes, where he definitely played his part.
Palace’s No.21 could’ve scored himself after running through on goal and although he missed that chance, he still kept going to feed Ayew the ball moments later, which enabled the Ghanaian to score a 90th minute equaliser – one point earned with Wickham’s help.
More recently in the 2-2 draw against Manchester City, you only need to watch what Wickham does with Fernandinho before the Brazilian’s own goal to be able to give credit to the physical striker.
💪 McCarthy's tackle and pass.
🌪 Wilf's run and cross.
— Crystal Palace F.C. (@CPFC) January 18, 2020
It may only have been a slender piece of impact, although the former Sunderland man jostles with the 34-year-old which ends with the former Shakhtar Donetsk midfielder struggling to sort his feet out, before the ball ricochets into the net off his shin to win the Eagles another point.
If he is happy to stay at the club, then Palace should let him.
Wickham’s recent contributions have earned Palace three points in total, and there is definitely a player of use standing before Hodgson.
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