It appears that Conor Gallagher is keen to stay at Chelsea, dashing Crystal Palace’s hopes of signing the midfielder permanently.
What’s the word?
That’s according to Simon Johnson, who wrote this transfer update on Twitter about the young midfielder:
“It’s been a given for months but Conor Gallagher will be part of #CFC squad this season. Tuchel loves him. Wanted him last season too but was convinced by club that Gallagher would be better off playing on loan at Palace for a year and coming back an even better player. ”
Supporters will be gutted
The old saying to “never fall in love with a loan player” has seldom rang truer than with this young English midfielder who embodied everything that Palace stood for last season.
The 22-year-old bagged eight goals and offered a further three assists across his 34 league appearances, and his tenacity in the middle of the park was instrumental in Patrick Vieira’s side finishing so clear of the relegation zone.
Who can replace Conor Gallagher at Crystal Palace?
His absence will be felt heavily in the coming months, and Vieira has had to pack his midfield this window to make up for the loss. The 22-year-old’s 24.71 pressures per 90 ranked him in the 93rd percentile among positional peers in Europe’s top five leagues as the midfielder covered an ungodly amount of ground over the season.
Combining this hard work with incredible talent, he also ranked in the 92nd percentile for dribbles completed and the 96th percentile for non-penalty goals per 90. He broke up the play phenomenally but also had the ability to push his team forward.
Vieira had admitted to finding it hard to replace Gallagher when he was absent last season, claiming that “it is difficult to find in the squad a player with Conor’s type of energy”.
Alas, the Palace boss must now find something from elsewhere to replace everything that the £ 17k-per-week ace had given to the club.
This is something that the manager and team will miss greatly, and this piece of transfer news will act as a dagger to the hearts of Palace supporters who may have been hoping for Gallagher’s permanent signing.
Unsurprisingly, they did fall in love with this particular loanee, but sadly it seems doomed to end in heartbreak.
AND in other news: Vieira plotting Palace bid for “outstanding” £ 5k-p / w “rising talent”, he’s Gallagher 2.0.