n £10.5million signing Naouirou Ahamada, Crystal Palace hope they have secured a bargain.
Ahamada joined from Stuttgart on deadline day, and there is real excitement at Palace about how the 20-year-old Frenchman develops under Patrick Vieira.
An athletic, box-to-box midfielder, who is good on the ball, Ahamada has impressed with his displays in the Bundesliga this season.
He can play as a No8 or a No6, carries the ball well in transitions and is technically good.
His modest transfer fee makes him a low-risk signing that Palace hope, developing under the tutelage of a legendary midfielder like Vieira, could have a huge upside.
Ahamada does not turn 21 until March, but has already played in France, Italy and Germany, and Palace chairman Steve Parish says he has “shown an impressive ability to adapt to new challenges”.
He is still raw, and it might be too much to expect him to make an immediate impact in a Palace midfield that has lacked a spark since losing Conor Gallagher. But Ahamada has trained with his new team-mates this week and is available to go straight into the squad for tomorrow’s trip to Old Trafford.
He is excited to learn under Vieira and help a Palace side who stopped their worrying slide with draws against Manchester United and Newcastle last month.
“Patrick Vieira is a big French player, we have the same position and it is a good way for me to progress in my career,” said Ahamada.
“We have spoken about what I can do for the team. It is a dream to play in the Premier League. I want to show my quality, and I want to help this team with my quality.”