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A regular blog dedicated to Crystal Palace Football Club through the eyes of a fanatical supporter, contemplating everything from results to the colour of Stuart O'Keefe's boot laces…

Crystal Palace News: 18/07/2013

All the news from SE25 in the last 24 hours

The signing of Jose Campana has been officially announced on the club’s website.

Campana’s displays at the tournament led to him being coveted by clubs across Europe, after he decided not to sign a new contract at Sevilla. And the starlet has now opted to sign a long-term deal at Palace, which will keep him at Selhurst Park until the end of June 2017.
Speaking exclusively to Palace Player via an interpreter, Campana said: “I’m delighted to become a Crystal Palace player. Over the last two years, I’ve had some problems with my hometown club, but I’m really excited to play in the Premier League.
“I think it’s a good step for me and I’m really excited and looking forward to meet all the boys and start as quickly as possible.
“I got the first interest through my agent, who said that Crystal Palace were interested and straight away I said ‘yes’ because for me it was a dream to play in England, especially in the Premier League. I hope to help the team stay in the league and then move forward.

“It’s probably taken a month – our people have been looking at him.”

And Parish says the club have been helping the youngster to settle in and admitted the deal was a “decent transaction” with Sevilla.

“We’ve been settling Jose in the last couple of days and we’ve got an interpreter because his English isn’t the best,” he told the Advertiser.

“We’ve had a liaison person working with him to show him around and get him settled in as soon as possible.

“We then worked very well with his agents, who were fantastic and made it clear the player wanted to come to Palace – all round it was a decent transaction.”

All the facts and figures about Campana’s career to date are here.

Full Name: Jose Angel Gomez Campaña

Age: 20

Height: 5ft 10in

Date of Birth: 30th May 1993

Nationality: Spanish

Place of Birth: Seville

Position: Midfielder

I’ve given my thoughts on Campana’s arrival, with the midfielder obviously having a great deal of potential.

Despite his tender age, Campaña understands what the professional game entails, having signed a full-time contract with Sevilla in May of 2011. Having made 58 appearances for his boyhood club in total, he’s had experience of competitive football, even if it hasn’t been at quite a prolific rate as he would have liked. Given the Spanish pyramid system, the majority of his outings have come as part of Sevilla II, for whom he made 38 appearances in his debut season of 2010/11. Since then, he’s played a mere 20 times, with only five of those coming last season, it’s hardly a surprise to hear that he feels the time has come to move on.

If the words of outspoken Sevilla president Jose Maria del Nido are to be taken as gospel, it became clear to all concerned that Campaña’s time with Los Rojiblancos had reached its natural conclusion recently. It seems that there have never been any question marks over Campaña’s potential, with everyone involved in the Spanish game fully aware of what he could become given time, but with limited first-team opportunities and a supposed reputation for enjoying his time away from the football pitch beginning to grow, it sounds as though the midfielder may have plumped for the opportunity to escape the bubble that surrounds him.

Bradley Russell and I have taken a look back at our top five foreign signings from years gone by…

3. Aki Riihilahti:

During his time with the club, Aki Riihilahti became a genuine cult hero for many Palace fans. There will be no one who suggests he was the most gifted of footballers, but in terms of work-rate and desire, he more than made up for any shortcomings.

There has always been a trend amongst our fan-base to idolise those who work the hardest for the cause, and Aki embodied the never say die spirit that our club have always looked to embrace. Having been a huge part of the team who dragged their way up from the bottom of the first division to the Premier League under the stewardship of Iain Dowie, as well as our subsequent fight against relegation during the following campaign, Riihilahti fully understand the mindset that Palace fans collectively share, thriving in the role of the underdog.

He’s still loved by our supporters, seven years after his departure, and rightly so. Every successful side needs their fair share of workhorses, and Aki relished his role as our midfield engine from his first appearance to his last.

Rumours of a move for Mislav Orsic continue to rumble on…

Palace boss Ian Holloway is looking to bring in new faces to boost the South-London club’ssurvival bid this season, with Orsic on his radar.

The 20-year-old midfielder has netted 22 goals in 90 games for Inter Zapresic, and has four Under-21 caps for Croatia.

Orsic’s agent Branko Hucika confirmed Palace’s interest in the attacking youngster, but also claimed other top-flight sides in England and Europe were in the running.

The football blog TwoHundredPercent have a preview of our season.

Different clubs will have different levels of hope and expectation for the coming months, but for the supporters of Crystal Palace the target is a simple if fiendish one: find a way of finishing above that dotted line near the foot of the table, by whatever means necessary. It is traditional to write off newly-promoted clubs at this time of year. According to The Lazy Hack’s Book Of Pre-Season Preview Writing, if you pick all three of them to exit in a downward direction from whence they came, it’s likely that you’ll get one or two right. However, in recent years there have been plenty of examples of clubs that have been promoted and held their own. A quick glance at the middle-to-lower half of last year’s Premier League table is littered with clubs whose implosions have been gleefully predicted at some point in the recent past. Even in the cases of Norwich City and Southampton, who were promoted for two successive seasons and might easily have been expected to struggle in their new surroundings, have managed to stay afloat without the need to get involved in any particularly attritional fight for survival.

It’s been confirmed that Kevin Phillips has agreed to sign a new contact, taking his through the next season with us.

But Parish confirmed the news when questioned, stating: “It’s done – it’s a one-year deal,” he said.

“He’s been training with us, I believe the paperwork has all been done so it’s going through.”

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