Garth Crooks has credited Liverpool loanee Mamadou Sakho for Crystal Palace’s recent upturn in fortunes and feels his future at Anfield is far from certain.
Sam Allardyce’s men have won their last four league matches as they aim to preserve their Premier League status with Sakho, whose stay in South London ends this summer, playing the full 90 minutes in those contests.
Palace have grabbed maximum points including their shock 2-1 win at Stamford Bridge over the weekend and Crooks feels he could be welcomed back into Jurgen Klopp’s squad.
“You would have got odds of 11-1 for Crystal Palace to win 2-1 away at Stamford Bridge,” he wrote on BBC Sport.
“The bookies are notorious for giving nothing away, which gives you an indication of the enormity of their victory against Chelsea.
“The man responsible for thwarting most of the advances from the league leaders, and has done so for Palace since his arrival on loan to the Eagles, has been Mamadou Sakho.
“He has been immense for Palace who, despite Chelsea’s many chances, failed to take advantage of them largely due to the out of form Diego Costa.
“Allardyce must be congratulated for getting Sakho to Palace. Since his arrival the Eagles have not stopped soaring. If there was a tackle or header to be made he won it and at no stage did the defender look in the least bit fazed by the pressure posed by the Blues, who have an impeccable home record.
“The big question for Allardyce and Palace is can they lure the Frenchman away from Liverpool (who still retain his contract) and get him to play for Palace on a permanent basis?
“If Liverpool were to get a top four place, and their chances seem to improve with every game, I can see Jurgen Klopp seriously thinking about retaining the services of the player to bolster his squad.”
Allardyce ends Conte’s Stamford Bridge victory streak
Before the arrival of Palace the Blues, who remain on course to win a fourth Premier League title, won ten consecutive matches at home.
In that run – which included emphatic wins over champions Leicester City, Manchester United and Everton – they managed 30 goals whilst conceding just five times.
Sakho currently has three years left on his Liverpool contract having joined from Paris Saint-Germain in 2013.
He would go on to make 80 appearances for the Merseysiders with 29 of those coming under Klopp.
His last game under the German tactician came in their 4-0 derby win over Everton last April a game which he found the back of the net.
Sakho would subsequently be charged with a drug ban, the French international returned for the club’s pre-season camp, however a falling out with Klopp subsequently lead to him being frozen out.