Crystal Palace remain interested in signing Watford midfielder Will Hughes this summer as the club’s rebuilding job continues to gather pace.
What’s the story?
The Eagles were first linked with a move for the 26-year-old several weeks ago but are yet to make a formal offer for his services.
According to The Sun, though, Palace are fighting hard to land Hughes, with fellow Premier League outfit Newcastle United undecided over whether to sign him.
Hughes has entered the final year of his contract at Vicarage Road, and negotiations over a new deal have reached an impasse, meaning an imminent exit could be on the cards.
Do Palace need Will Hughes?
Patrick Vieira needs him
New Palace boss Patrick Vieira has rung the changes at Selhurst Park since arriving in south London, allowing several experienced campaigners to depart on free transfers.
The likes of Joachim Andersen, Marc Guehi and Conor Gallagher have replaced the outgoings, bringing a new wave of hope and optimism to the capital club, although a few more fresh faces may be needed before the window closes.
In Vieira’s press conference before the Chelsea game over the weekend, the French tactician admitted he needs some extra reinforcements.
“When you look at the squad, we are maybe a little bit more light on numbers, and we are working hard to improve the squad (with) the window are still open. We will try to bring players that can improve our squad.
“I think where we are maybe a little bit more short is upfront and in the midfield, I think it would be good to reinforce those positions,” Vieira said after being asked if there’s any particular position he’s looking at.
After coming up through the ranks at boyhood club Derby County, the Hughes joined Watford back in 2017 in search of top-flight football.
Since joining the Hornets, the combative midfielder has established himself as a very useful Premier League player, scoring five goals and providing eight assists in 77 appearances in England’s top division.
His solid displays saw former Watford manager Javi Gracia laud the £6.3m-rated maestro after an impressive return from injury, saying: “I think he did a very good job in the time he was on the pitch. He was very clever made a very good assist, and took care of the ball. I think he was very good for us.”
Therefore, a large section of Palace fans will surely be hoping he joins Vieira’s new-look side this summer, adding some extra top-flight experience to the Eagles’ ranks.