Crystal Palace have been linked with a potential summer swoop for Spezia centre-back Martin Erlic.
Palace could look to strengthen their squad in the summer in order to push on in the next campaign and one area in which they could boost is centre-back. All of Palace’s current centre-backs are 30 or older, so signing a younger defender could be a good move by the club.
The report claims that Palace see “Premier League quality” in Erlic. This suggests that he could be performing to a high level in the Serie B this season and ready to make the step up to top-flight football next term.
But, who is he? We have compiled a factfile on the defender to help you get to know him more.
Martin Erlic is a 22-year-old central defender who stands at 6ft 3. He currently plays for Spezia in the second tier of Italian football.
Club career so far
Erlic played for a number of youth teams, including Dinamo Zagreb, Rijeka and Parma, before finally landing at Sassuolo.
He then went on loan to Sudtirol and Spezia, signing for the latter on a permanent basis last summer.
The centre-back has been a regular for Spezia in the Serie B this season, after playing 30 times for Sudtirol during his first loan.
International career so far
Erlic has represented Croatia at four different age groups but is yet to make a senior bow for his country.
He has been capped 25 times by Croatia from U17 all the way through to U21 level.
The defender has not won any tournaments whilst playing for his country, as of yet.
Who else is interested?
At the moment, fellow Premier League side Southampton are the only other club said to be interested in Erlic.
Southampton and Palace have both reportedly been scouting Erlic as they consider summer swoops for the Croatian.
Style of play
Erlic’s style has been compared to Inter star Milan Skriniar.
The Inter defender is an excellent ball-playing centre-back, who is strong in his challenges but also quick to make recovery runs and win the ball back.
This suggests that Erlic may possess these, or similar, qualities in his game.