By David Owen
October 24 – Crystal Palace, off to a good start to the season under former England boss Roy Hodgson, appear to have made arrangements in effect to receive a £22.5 million instalment of the transfer fee for wing-back Aaron Wan-Bissaka earlier than scheduled.
A registration of charge document filed recently at Companies House seems to indicate that Palace have assigned the instalment, due from the player’s new club Manchester United next July, to Macquarie Bank as security for a loan, presumably for the same amount less interest and/or a fee.
The deal may give the south London club more firepower in the January transfer window or possibly to put towards improvements at its Selhurst Park base. When unveiling a £35.5 million pre-tax loss for 2017-18 last April, Palace said it would start construction on a new 8,300-seat stand “as soon as possible”.
Wan-Bissaka, a highly-promising right-sided wide man and product of the Palace academy, made the switch to Old Trafford in June, in a deal valued at a reported £50 million, including £45 million up front. Timing of the deal, just before the London club’s year-end, means the bulk of the financial benefit arising from the transfer should be able to be included in Palace’s 2018-19 figures. As an academy product, one would expect the defender to have been assigned a book value of zero, meaning that the full proceeds should be regarded as profit.
It was suggested this month that Palace’s US owners Joshua Harris and David Blitzer may have put their stake up for sale. A report in financial newspaper City AM said a document drawn up by Zenith Global Capital Partners was offering the purchase of up to 90% of the club.
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