At the time of writing this, Crystal Palace are still leading the race to sign former Chelsea centre-back Gary Cahill, reports suggest.
The Sun say that Hodgson is determined to pick-up the centre-back, who played under his tutelage during Hodgson’s tenure as England manager.
According to the report, the 33-year-old is keen to stay within the capital and hopes to land a contract worth £75,000-a-week for two years.
Cahill has also reportedly been talking to other clubs. West Ham and Burnley have been mentioned, though the latter seemed to have decreased their interest due to £40m-rated James Tarkowski being more likely to stay at Turf Moor.
If the £75,000-per-week rumours are true, then seeing Gary Cahill join Palace would be a surprising move. Palace already boast four established Premier League centre-backs in Mamadou Sakho, James Tomkins, Martin Kelly, Scott Dann and even have Jairo Riedewald at their disposal.
Indeed, within the Guardian’s season preview, they do stress that the club’s wage bill has been holding them back in the transfer market, so the idea of seeing someone come in on wages that’d make him the fifth-highest earner (via SpotRac) does seem somewhat far-fetched.
Furthermore, considering that Cahill hasn’t really played football for a year, it’s hard to see where you pick him in that side. Sakho and Tomkins are likely to remain as the first choice pairing if they are both fit, based on their 27 and 29 games in the league last season, before their seasons were both hampered by injuries.
With Dominic Fifield and The Guardian describing Palace as a team “with an onerous wage bill demanding an imaginative approach to strengthening” within their season preview, then Gary Cahill doesn’t really fit that bill and seems more of a panicked, safe option rather than finding someone who can do a job on far less money and have a better resale value.
With Palace already struggling with their wage bill, getting Cahill on £75,000-per-week would be really lacking foresight as it could prevent them from reinvesting in the future.
They already have four accomplished centre-backs, so they would’ve been better getting another young player, playing Riedewald or sorting a loan deal, rather than tying down a player on expensive wages for two years who might not even play.
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