Crystal Palace set sights on Jean-Philippe Mateta in search for new striker

Nicholas Hughes
Nicholas Hughes Updated: 19 May 2021 16:43 CEST 2 min read
Crystal Palace set sights on Jean-Philippe Mateta in search for new striker

Crystal Palace are looking to Germany to resolve their issues in front of goal with Mainz 05’s Jean-Philippe Mateta reportedly on their radar.

The Independent have suggested Roy Hodgson is interested in the Frenchman who has seven goals to his name in 15 Bundesliga appearances so far this season.

Crystal Palace have struggled in front of goal this season and particularly in recent weeks having only scored twice in their last seven games in all competitions.

Wilfried Zaha is miles beyond everyone else with eight strikes in the Premier League, with closest to him being Christian Benteke on three.

Michy Batshuayi’s return on loan from Chelsea has been nothing short of disastrous with the Belgian only having started four games up until now and failing to get off the mark.

Even Jordan Ayew has only managed one goal after what looked a promising campaign last season as Palace have only four players that have scored multiple goals.

Mateta, a nine-times capped France U21 international, has bounced back from a torn meniscus that ruined his 2019/20 season with great effect.

The 23-year-old stands at 192cm tall and is dangerous in the air, winning 2.4 aerial duels per 90 minutes and 4.6 duels overall.

Crystal Palace need goals – is Mateta the man?

While he doesn’t really get involved in any link-up play, that will suit Crystal Palace’s direct style and his pace and height will suit the likes of Ebereche Eze and Wilfried Zaha, allowing them to work off Mateta through the centre of the pitch.

Mateta is constantly busy with an average of five touches in the opposition box P90 as well as 2.6 shots P90, showing an eagerness to take responsibility off his own boot.

Mainz’s sporting director Rouven Schroder recently admitted that the club have rejected offers in last two windows for Mateta, adding that if an “outrageous” offer comes in then the club would need to think about it.

Palace will be eager to get this deal over the line before the window shuts if they are to look at getting back into the top half of the table.