Crystal Palace fear star man Cheikhou Kouyate will quit to join Saudi Arabian side Al-Ittihad in summer transfer window

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CRYSTAL PALACE fear    star  midfielder  Cheikhou Kouyate   will   sign   for    Al-Ittihad in Saudi Arabia.

Kouyate is back from the Africa Cup of Nations after winning the trophy with Senegal and due for contract talks at Palace in the coming weeks.

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Senegal’s Cheikhou Kouyate triumphed at the Africa Cup of Nations and Crystal Palace fear he could leave for Al-IttihadCredit: AFP

But the Eagles are concerned that the former West Ham player, 32, will pick a huge payday in the Middle East rather than staying with them.

Kouyate played just over an hour of the Afcon final last Sunday as his Senegal side triumphed in the competition for the first time.

The midfielder ran tirelessly at Paul Biya Stadium before being replaced by Marseille’s Pape Gueye.

He was rested for Saturday’s trip to London rivals Brentford.

Will Hughes was flanked by Jeffrey Schlupp and Conor Gallagher in a midfield three at Brentford Community Stadium.

The main attraction at the Premier League clash came in the form of Brentford’s new midfielder – Christian Eriksen.

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The Denmark international was unveiled to fans before kick-off but then watched the game from the stands.

And how his creative spark would have been welcome on the pitch as the two sides played out a 0-0 bore draw.

Palace will need a major overhaul in midfield this summer as several players are out of contract — including James McArthur.

The 34-year-old moved to Selhurst Park from Wigan back in September 2014 but sees his contract expire in June this year.

 Read our Transfer News Live blog for the very latest rumours, gossip and done deals

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