Why Man Utd's Olise transfer could take dramatic twist with 'hail mary' move

Suraj Radia
Suraj Radia
  • Updated: 15 Feb 2024 16:29 GMT
  • 4 min read
Michael Olise, Crystal Palace, 2023/24

One of the most in-demand players in the Premier League this summer is expected to be Michael Olise, who is likely to leave Crystal Palace with the likes of Chelsea, Manchester United and Arsenal linked with moves for the forward.

Olise has been a standout performer for the Eagles since joining the club for just over £8 million in 2021 and his performances led to an approach from Chelsea last summer, while Manchester City are also thought to be admirers.

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The 22-year-old opted to remain at Selhurst Park for another season and renewed his contract at the same time, however the deal is believed to contain a release clause in excess of €50 million.

Palace look resigned to losing their talisman after yet another underwhelming campaign of the club hovering around mid-table, which has consequently led to Roy Hodgson on the verge of being sacked.

But while Palace could be bracing for a rebuild, with Eberechi Eze and Marc Guehi among the stars who are also likely to consider moves away, Hodgson’s potential replacement could end up being a ‘hail mary’ shot of keeping hold of the club’s biggest assets.

Ex-Frankfurt manager Oliver Glasner is expected to be named as Palace’s new manager in the coming days and the Austrian could be the ambitious appointment to take the club to the next level and convince stars like Olise to keep the faith for another year.

Glasner tasked with helping Palace escape mid-table purgatory

Palace have finished between between tenth and 15th place in the Premier League in the ten seasons since their promotion from the Championship, while the club have been outspent in the transfer market by 15 teams in that time, including relegated sides such as Southampton and Leicester.

The Eagles have recruited talented youngsters from the Football League and have also taken gambles before with unproven managerial appointments like Patrick Vieira and Frank de Boer, although their approach has shown little success.

Consequently, Palace have often ended up turning to the ‘tried and tested’ formula, with uninspiring coaches who are experienced enough to avoid a relegation fight but whom lack the innovation to elevate the club’s performances.

However, Glasner appears to be the latest attempt at a higher-ceiling appointment in Palace’s cycle and the 49-year-old will arrive with the added pedigree of being a European title winner, having led Frankfurt to Europa League success in 2022 and dispatching of Barcelona along the way.

Glasner is known for his passionate style of management, while striker Randal Kolo Muani took his game to new levels for Frankfurt last season, having a breakout campaign which led to an €80m transfer to Paris Saint-Germain.

The appointment should lead to some short-term encouragement for Palace and their players, having gone through a difficult run of form under Hodgson in recent weeks, and a bout of positivity may be enough to give the likes of Olise something to think about heading into the summer.

With Olise suffering another injury in a stop-start campaign, the youngster’s fitness concerns could deter interested teams and he could benefit from proving his fitness with Palace for another year under Glasner.

Ultimately the change from Hodgson was necessary and Palace now have an opportunity to dawn a new era under Glasner, with the Eagles hoping their current core will be a part of it and help them escape mid-table mediocrity.

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