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Argyle Hoping to Keep Hold Impressive Loanee for Another Season

29th May 2020

Plymouth Argyle currently have five loan players in their squad and the majority of those temporary acquisitions have made a significant contribution to the club's impressive League Two campaign. With Josh Grant adding some quality in midfield, and Ryan Hardie excelling in the role of super sub, Ryan Lowe's use of the loan market was key to the Pilgrim's rise up the table. However, it was goalkeeper Alex Palmer's match-winning performances which caught the eye, and Argyle fans will be desperately hoping to see the West Brom loanee back in green next season. 

The 23-year-old stopper made 41 appearances this season, featuring in all 37 league matches and keeping 14 clean sheets. Although he was aided and abetted by Plymouth's superb back-line, his commanding performances suggest that he has a bright future in the game. The two-time recipient of the Plymouth Live Argyle Player of the Month award helped Lowe's men pick up some vital points throughout the course of the campaign with his commanding display against relegation-threatened Macclesfield in mid-February earning a number of plaudits. Although it was deemed a disappointing result for the promotion-chasers, Palmer came to Plymouth's rescue on a number of occasions, helping the club to avoid an unwanted setback in their quest for League One football.

Although his spell in Devon isn't Palmer's first taste of EFL football, it's the first time that he's been able to enjoy regular first-team action. He featured just twice for Notts County in April 2019, whilst he made just a single appearance for Macclesfield, helping the Silkmen to a 3-1 victory over Cambridge in November 2018. 

The Kidderminster-born stopper is highly regarded at the Hawthorns, and signed a new long-term contract back in 2016. However, his deal expires this summer, and his performances for the Pilgrims are likely to have caught the eye of a number of Championship and League One sides. With the Baggies looking set to secure promotion to the top flight this season, West Brom may decide that he is surplus to requirements in the Black Country. Although they have a decent squad, Slaven Bilic's men are likely to be up against it next season, and are highly likely to be favourites for the drop in the Premier League betting markets for the 2020-21 campaign. Although promotion to the top tier is worth an estimated £170 million, they may look to trim their squad in order to make space for potential summer signings. 

Although there could potentially be a scramble for his signature this summer, Ryan Lowe's men should be in pole position. The loanee has clearly enjoyed his spell in the south west of England, and he would be almost guaranteed a starting spot, if he opted to return to Home Park. With the majority of the club's back-line expected to remain in place next season, it would provide some much-needed consistency in an important area of the field. Mike Cooper is a hugely exciting prospect, and he will add some healthy competition in this department, however, the majority of supporters would prefer to see Palmer back between the sticks next year. 

His return is far from rubberstamped, and his future is in the hands of the West Brom hierarchy, however at 23-years old, he is unlikely to be satisfied with the occasional EFL Cup appearance. If released, the Midlander is unlikely to be short of offers, although with the prospect of League One football on the cards, he will probably not turn down the opportunity to return to Home Park for at least another twelve months. 

 

 

 

Posted by Mark at 3:09pm

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