Crystal Palace are eyeing up a move for Huddersfield midfielder Lewis O’Brien, according to Football Insider.
What’s the latest transfer news involving O’Brien?
The 22-year-old has been linked with a move to Leeds United in recent weeks but the Yorkshire-based club have struggled to make progress in negotiations having made an initial offer of no more than £3m earlier this month.
This appears to have left the door open for Palace, who are keen on bringing the youngster to Selhurst Park.
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What were O’Brien’s stats last season?
O’Brien featured regularly for Huddersfield last term, making 42 appearances in the Championship. Largely operating as a central midfielder, he chipped in with three goals and three assists as the team finished down in 20th place in the table.
As per WhoScored, he made more key passes (45) and completed more tackles (85) than any of his teammates, highlighting that he is a well-rounded modern-day midfielder.
Which midfielders have Palace signed already this summer?
The south London club have already been busy in the transfer market this summer, adding two central midfielders to their ranks.
In early July, Palace signed the highly-rated Michael Olise from Reading, and they finished off the month by securing a loan deal for Chelsea’s Conor Gallagher.
Now, they are weighing up a move for O’Brien, meaning that the team’s midfield could have a completely different look to it in 2021/22.
Is Vieira now turning a former weakness into a strength for Palace?
Last season, Palace’s options in central midfield looked to be very thin. With the likes of James McCarthy and James McArthur struggling with fitness issues, Roy Hodgson was restricted to selecting Luka Milivojevic and Jairo Riedewald towards the end of the year. It seemed clear that this was a weak area for the team heading into the summer.
Vieira has moved to rectify that this summer, though, by bringing in Olise and Gallagher. The pair should be able to give Palace a refreshing new look in the middle of the park this season, and they can arguably add a little more in the final third than Palace’s midfielders did in 2020/21.
If they can also sign O’Brien, this would mean that Vieira would have three new central midfielders aged 22 or below in his squad come the end of the month. These young, vibrant players ought to considerably improve Palace’s team, and could turn their central midfield from a weakness into a strength moving forwards.