Crystal Palace confirm £21m Cheick Doucoure transfer after beating Arsenal to Lens midfielder | The Sun

CRYSTAL PALACE have confirmed the signing of Cheick Doucoure on a five-year deal.

The midfielder, 22, joins the Eagles in an initial £18million transfer from Ligue 1 side Lens, with add-ons potentially taking the total cost to £21m.

Upon his arrival, he told the club's official website: "I'm very happy, I feel a lot of joy and a lot of pride to be a Palace player.

"I’m proud to be at Palace today."

Crystal Palace chairman Steve Parish added: "Cheick's arrival is yet another statement of intent, demonstrating our ambition to further improve the squad this summer.

"We are extremely confident that Cheick will adapt seamlessly to the rigours of the Premier League and that he will contribute positively to the squad, and I wish him all the very best for his time with us."

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Crystal Palace fought off competition from London rivals Arsenal for Doucoure's signature.

Mikel Arteta is hunting midfield reinforcements this summer and considered the Mali international a top target.

However, Palace boss Patrick Vieira was able to beat his former club in the transfer race.

Doucoure is the Eagles' third signing of the summer following the arrivals of Sam Johnstone and Malcolm Ebiowei, who joined the club on free transfers from West Brom and Derby.

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But Vieira is still looking to strengthen in other areas of the pitch.

Dwight McNeil has emerged as another target with Palace looking to bid around £10m, however, Burnley are said to be expecting a higher fee.

The Eagles are also looking to sign Chelsea defender Levi Colwill on a permanent transfer following his successful loan spell with Huddersfield.

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