Crystal Palace are currently weighing up the possibility of making a move for Rangers’ captain James Tavernier.
According to reports from talkSPORT, the Eagles are amongst a number of clubs who want the defender.
It’s said within the report that Rangers have already turned to Argentina to look at Lanus full-back Leonel Di Placido to take the place of the former Wigan defender.
Tavernier, 27, has been at Rangers since July 2015 and has been a regular for the Glaswegian side. He has made 149 appearances in the league for the club, racking up 33 goals from defence. Also, he has already produced five assists for the Bluenoses this season in just five games.
With Aaron Wan-Bissaka now a Manchester United player, Joel Ward and Martin Kelly are Palace’s two right-back choices for the upcoming campaign.
With Ward and Kelly failing to register a single assist between them last season, Palace will miss Wan-Bissaka’s athleticism and ability to bomb down the right-flank, take players on and create overlaps.
Wan-Bissaka averaged the highest dribbles per game for a defender in the league with 1.7 and also managed to register three assists. However, it was his defensive stats that stood out. He managed the third most amount of tackles in the league with 3.7 per game and the seventh most amount of interceptions with 2.4 per game (WhoScored).
While Tavernier may not be able to replicate Wan-Bissaka’s defensive capabilities, he could certainly bring something to Palace in attack. As a right-back, the Englishman scored a remarkable 17 goals last season and made 20 assists from 57 competitive matches (Transfermarkt).
The Scotsman also reports that last season he was the highest scoring full-back and was involved in more goals than any other in world football (top flight, domestic and continental fixtures). Additionally, he delivered more crosses than any other player in the Rangers team with 216 and with a 40.74 per cent accuracy.
Considering that Palace are to be playing with 6’3″ Christian Benteke as the figurehead in their attack, with the 28-year-old starting in the recent 0-0 draw with Everton, then having someone with the crossing ability of Tavernier could add more strings to Palace’s bow and add more options to their attack.
Considering that Palace already have two defence oriented right-backs at the moment, James Tavernier could add something to the Eagles which they don’t already have.
Tavernier has the ability to push forward, attack the box and get a lot of goal contributions.
Ultimately, he would be a smart addition and add depth to Palace and allow them to play two different types of full-backs. Perhaps if Palace wanted to play more aggressively then they could play Tavernier and if they want to set up more solidly they could play Ward. Either way would give opposition managers more to worry about.
Crystal Palace fans, is Tavernier the right-back the Eagles need in January? Tell us what you think in the comment section below!
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