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May 31 2023 5.07pm

HOPKIN returns

March 15 2001

Crystal Palace

Crystal Palace

Crystal Palace boss Alan Smith has splashed out 1.5million on Bradford midfielder DAVID HOPKIN as he bids to end lingering fears of being sucked into first division relegation trouble .

HOPKIN has agreed a three-year deal to move back to Selhurst Park four years after leaving Palace in a 4million move to Leeds.

The central midfielder has been allowed to leave Valley Parade as Bradford cut their wage bill ahead of their likely relegation from the Premiership this season.

HOPKIN played 43 times during his first spell at Palace and scored 17 goals - including the injury time play-off final winner over Sheffield United at Wembley in 1997. Palace chairman Simon Jordan said: "This signing takes our spending since July to 8.5 million."This is a Premiership signing and we are delighted to have a Premiership quality player becoming a valuable addition to our club."

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