Sunday 21 January 2018

Sam Allardyce admits Crystal Palace squad fears as Eagles chase reinforcements

Patrick van Aanholt remains a Crystal Palace target
Patrick van Aanholt remains a Crystal Palace target

Crystal Palace manager Sam Allardyce fears his current squad is not good enough to avoid relegation from the Premier League.

Palace this weekend entertain an Everton side - fresh from their magnificent 4-0 thumping of Manchester City - having failed to record a win from their last seven league matches.

Allardyce, who has never been relegated as a top-flight manager, is also chasing his first league victory since taking over from Alan Pardew in December.

Allardyce has been desperate to bolster his options during the transfer window, particularly in defence, but moves so far for Arsenal full-back Carl Jenkinson and Patrick van Aanholt of Sunderland have proved fruitless.

And the former England boss has suggested his side's fate may be sealed if they fail to add to their one significant signing - that of Jeffrey Schlupp from Leicester - during the final 10 days of the window.

"The suggestion is, if you look at the economics of this season, than we are not [good enough to stay up] because we have less points than games," Allardyce said.

"So, the bare minimum we have to get to as quickly as we can is how many games have we played, and do we have that many points? Then we are safe and then we try to push on from there to try and be even safer and start to edge more points than games and finally at the end of the season we can plan for next year.

"But at the moment the suggestion is that by results, by 21 games that we have only got 16 points, that this squad is not good enough or hasn't been good enough up to now. I can make it better, I hope I can, but new players will obviously help a great deal."

Palace are hovering precariously above the drop zone, and Allardyce believes the players have a professional duty to ensure the club do not drop down to the Championship.

"When I've been in this position before, I tell players how many people relegation affects at a football club," Allardyce added.

"So many people have to lose their jobs because of it, or certainly would have to re-apply for their jobs or cut their salaries by 50 per cent, just to stay working at the club.

"It can be devastation from top to bottom, all the way down to security or whoever makes the tea. Every area financially has to be trimmed back because of the loss of revenue from falling out of the Premier League.

"It's a responsibility to keep the club in the Premier League and we're the only ones who can do it; the first-team players and the backroom staff.

"They also have responsibilities for their own families. They'd get a reduced contract if they go out of the Premier League as well, so there's enough motivation there for me and the players to make sure they get out of trouble now."

Press Association

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