Dowie's Reich delight
By Alex Livie
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Iain Dowie says that The Eagles fought off stiff competition to keep Marco Reich.Crystal Palace boss Iain Dowie has revealed that The Eagles fought off stiff competition to secure the signature of German midfielder Marco Reich on a long-term deal.
Reich pitched up at Selhurst Park in the summer after leaving Derby County, with The Eagles hedging their bets by handing him a short-term deal.
The 27-year-old responded by producing a string of impressive displays, prompting The Eagles to put together a fresh package.
Reich's performances caught the eye of a host of other clubs and Dowie has expressed delight at persuading the midfielder to commit his future to Palace.
"It's pen and paper time. He's agreed the deal, we've shaken hands and everything is done," said Palace boss Dowie.
"We are pleased to have tied it up. He wants to stay and we want to keep him, so it's a good move for everyone.
"He's done very well for us and there was some fairly strong competition for him from other clubs in The Championship."
Dowie, meanwhile, has welcomed chairman Simon Jordan's declaration that any approach from West Ham for striker Andrew Johnson will fall on deaf ears.
"It's reassuring to hear the chairman say again that AJ is not for sale, but we've got to make sure we put some results together now," said Dowie.
"He signed a new deal in the summer but clearly it's going to be much harder to keep him when he has been out of The Premiership for a year."