Over the past few days, there have been a growing number of articles surrounding the future of Jean-Philippe Mateta, who is currently on loan at Crystal Palace from FSV Mainz 05.
Shunned for a while, the Frenchman struggled to get any game time at Selhurst Park, but Patrick Vieira’s decision to play him a bit more of late has paid off, since he has scored in two of the last three games he has featured him.
Crystal Palace also have a €15m or so option to buy him that could become permanent after certain goals are met, but those haven’t been triggered as of yet.
AS Saint-Etienne have since taken a shine to the player, with many suggestions a deal was close at one point, but that has died down of late, with Newcastle United also joining the race in some shape or form on Monday.
Kicker in Germany have an article trying to clarify the situation from Mainz’s end a bit, and explain the Ligue 1 side ‘have already contacted’ their Bundesliga counterparts about a possible loan move.
For that to happen, Crystal Palace would need to agree to it, but ‘nothing has yet been heard’ from the Premier League club.
It’s pointed out that Mainz agreeing to a new loan ‘is questionable anyway’ and ‘if the contract do not provide for the possibility of termination, it is only possible by mutual agreement’, meaning ‘Mateta, Crystal Palace and a new club would therefore have to agree on the framework conditions for the change’.
As things stand, Mainz ‘have no interest in waiving Crystal Palace’s obligation to buy’, with it speculate it could take effect after 15 Premier League appearances and ‘bring €14m in compensation’, but ‘it would also be possible for them to buy themselves free from it’.
By doing so and terminating the operation, the Eagles ‘could again save part of the loan fee of around €4m if the 18 month loan is reduced’.
One thing is clear, however, and that’s Mainz’s lack of desire to see Mateta return, because ‘he doesn’t fit into the concept’ of their manager Bo Svensson, which is a system where ‘strikers have to track back a lot’.
It’s complicated, but there’s a deal to be done somewhere, but only if Crystal Palace agree to it.