Palace could move for Bent

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Published: Wednesday 31st December 2014 by The News Editor

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Alan Pardew could turn to Darren Bent to fill Crystal Palace’s striker void if the Eagles cannot complete a deal for Swansea’s Bafetimbi Gomis.

Newcastle boss Pardew is expected to be installed as Palace’s new manager ahead of the New Year’s Day trip to Aston Villa.

Pardew has been in talks over personal terms with Palace chairman Steve Parish since Newcastle granted permission for the Selhurst Park club to approach their manager.

Caretaker manager Keith Millen could yet handle affairs at Villa Park on Thursday, and admitted the club must not lose focus on their January transfer targets.

“There are players on the list that I’m sure the chairman’s going to go through with the new manager,” said Millen, who will be retained in Pardew’s backroom staff.

“I’ve been involved in the discussions with Neil (Warnock) when he was here and the scouting network.

“If we can bring in one or two players then we can be at full strength.”

Former England striker Bent’s deal at Villa expires at the end of the season, and the 30-year-old has scored two goals in five games in his current loan stint at Brighton.

Derby boss Steve McClaren is believed to be interested in taking Bent to Pride Park until the end of the campaign, but Press Association Sport understands Palace are now monitoring proceedings closely.

Pardew has been an admirer of Bent ever since the pair worked together at Charlton.

Former Crystal Palace midfielder Pardew tried to take Bent to Newcastle in August 2013 before the 13-cap forward opted to join Fulham on loan instead.

Palace have prioritised signing a left-back and a striker in January’s transfer window, with the club battling to progress plans after sacking manager Neil Warnock on December 27.

Warnock had made no secret of the club’s desire to complete a deal for Swansea frontman Gomis.

St Etienne president Bernard Calazzo has this week claimed that Gomis will return to his first club, and Palace face competition from several Premier League rivals to land the France striker.

Palace’s biggest challenge in January after that will be to retain in-form winger Yannick Bolasie, with the likes of Stoke keen to prise the France-born flyer away from Selhurst Park.

Published: Wednesday 31st December 2014 by The News Editor

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