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Parish ponders Palace improvements

Published 07/04/2015

Steve Parish wants to find investment to improve the Selhurst Park facilities
Steve Parish wants to find investment to improve the Selhurst Park facilities

Crystal Palace chairman Steve Parish has revealed he wants to bring in extra investment so the club can improve their Selhurst Park home.

The Premier League side, who beat champions Manchester City 2-1 on Monday night, have been reportedly targeted for a takeover by Josh Harris - an American businessman who already owns the Philadelphia 76ers National Basketball Association team and the National Hockey League outfit the New Jersey Devils.

But Parish, who has been at Palace since he and his consortium saved the club from the brink of financial collapse in 2010, has since insisted he would remain involved and that investment rather than a complete takeover was his preferred option.

And now he has given his reasons for why he believes extra funds are required, insisting the current set-up would allow manager Alan Pardew to bring in the desired summer transfer targets but that other areas require more investment.

"The only reason for us to get money in is to improve the infrastructure," he told BBC London.

"There is no rush and we are in a good place. If it happens, it happens. We've done well enough that I think we can fund the player things we need to do out of our own resources.

"We are long overdue some ground improvements. They are very costly. We need to make sure we get that done. If that means bringing in other people, and they are the right people, then we'll do it."

The CPFC2010 consortium took over with the Eagles having only just survived relegation from the Championship and, in under five years, have overseen a return to top-flight football.

They finished last season in 11th place, ensuring for the first time that their stay in the Premier League would last longer than a solitary campaign.

Pardew has guided them to the same position after being appointed at the turn of the year and Monday night's victory over City all-but guarantees a third Premier League season.

Glenn Murray and Jason Puncheon had put Palace two goals up against the visitors, who could only find a consolation goal through Yaya Toure.

Puncheon was also the target of a number of items thrown onto the pitch from the area housing Man City's supporters as he prepared to take a second-half corner.

The Football Association are aware of the incident and will take appropriate action once they have their findings.

It is not the first case of items being thrown onto the pitch at Selhurst Park this season, with Newcastle defender Fabricio Coloccini struck by a coin thrown as he celebrated a goal for his side.

Just days later another item was thrown onto the playing area in the FA Cup meeting with Liverpool and Palace threatened to ban for life anyone found guilty of such acts.

Murray's 31 goals helped fire Palace to promotion in 2012/13, but it appeared he would be robbed of the chance to attempt transfer that form into the top flight after suffering a cruciate injury in their play-off semi-final against Brighton.

He returned in February last year but managed only one goal and was farmed out on loan to Reading earlier this season, before Pardew appointed as manager.

But Pardew has showed his faith in the Cumbria-born frontman, and that is paying off.

Murray tapped home the first goal against City, despite more than one hint of offside, and drew the foul which allowed Puncheon to curl in a fine free-kick for number two.

He also had an impact at the other end, getting away with what appeared a blatant handball in the penalty area before Toure pulled one back for the visitors.

Maybe Murray deserved a piece of luck, which had deserted him when he was carried from the same ground on a stretcher nearly two years earlier.

"Murray's was a performance of what a modern number nine can do," Pardew said. "I felt a bit sorry for him - he was winning headers and we couldn't pick up the second ball.

"It was just deserts for him. He's been very unlucky with injuries and he's deserved this a lot earlier in his career. I'm so pleased for him and that he is getting rewarded for the quality he has."

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