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FITZ: AJ and Wayne are vital

January 6 2005

Wayne Routledge

Wayne Routledge

Crystal Palace defender FITZ HALL believes keeping Andrew Johnson and Wayne Routledge at the club will be vital to the Eagles bid to remain in the Premiership, by Stuart Pink.

With the transfer window now open, talk has been rife about potential big money bids coming in for Palace's prize assets.

Routledge has yet to sign a contract offered to him three weeks ago, and despite signing a five-year deal in October, Johnson is still being linked with a big money move away from Selhurst Park, with Liverpool the potential suitors.

HALL said: "If they're happy here, they're scoring goals and playing well, and it looks like we'll have a chance of staying up, there is no need for them to go."

The duo have been in impressive form of late, with Johnson back on the goal trail notching four goals in four games, and Routledge putting in some sterling performances.

HALL said: "AJ got the goals but Wayne ran the show against Villa to be fair. He had total control of the game and they were a bit frightened of him.

"He's starting to produce every week. He's more consistent and that comes with us giving him the ball more."

Palace boss Iain Dowie has still yet to confirm any players coming into the club, but admits he is close to finalising some potential purchases.

Dowie said: "We are now in January and the transfer window is open and I am looking at bringing new players into the club as soon as possible.

"This club should be in the Premier League and we must take the opportunity to make sure we remain in there.

"But whoever we get must have the correct attitude and be the right type of player to fit in with what we're trying to do." One man who may well be on his way out of Selhurst Park is Ivan Kaviedes, who is still being strongly linked with a move back to Ecuador.

The 27-year-old has struggled to make an impact since his 2million move making just one Premiership start against Chelsea in August.

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