Mamadou Sakho is set to join Crystal Palace following a loan spell from Liverpool that proved critical in the survival campaign for Sam Allardyce’s team.
But Palace would need to weigh their financial options considerably as the Reds could seek for at least £30m in the release of the France international.
Both Liverpool and Palace were engaged in a similar negotiation last summer over striker Christian Benteke, with the Belgian moving to the capital for an initial £27m.
Sakho, who had been largely excluded by Jurgen Klopp before moving to Palace on transfer deadline night, had helped Palace win five of the seven matches he completed.
Considered a pariah in Liverpool after a drug flag by WADA (later found out to be a mistake on WADA’s part) and an awkward falling out with Klopp, Sakho was still able to find success in Palace with notable performance in wins against Chelsea and Arsenal — a fact observed by Palace chairman Steve Parish.
“You can’t con anyone that he didn’t make a massive difference,” Parish said. “We won some massive games with him.”
“He’s a really nice person, a big character, he’s got the respect of all the players, and it’s one we’d like to do. But, of course, we have a lot of things we need to do in the summer, and the money needs to work for us and for Liverpool.”
However, a knee ligament he sustained against Tottenham dampened his impact to the club, and he was unlikely to feature even on the final day for Palace against Manchester United.
But the Frenchman was at Selhurst Park last Sunday for Palace’s 4-0 victory against fellow strugglers Hull City which in turn had guaranteed Palace’s survival in the Premier League, and took part in the post-match lap of appreciation.