Ward explains why he turned down Ipswich and Leeds to sign for Palace

07:20 31 May 2012

Joel Ward has signed for Crystal Palace

Joel Ward has signed for Crystal Palace

PA Archive/Press Association Images

The former Portsmouth man wants to work with Dougie Freedman

Crystal Palace’s new signing Joel Ward has revealed that working with Dougie Freedman was the reason why he chose to move to the Eagles.

The 22-year-old impressed for crisis-club Portsmouth and had been linked with moves to Leeds and Ipswich but, after meeting the Palace manager, he opted to move to Selhurst Park.

“I met Dougie on a couple of occasions and he is very positive and very driven about where he wants the club to go,” Ward said.

“He has got a vision for the club and he wants to take it forward and take it to the Premier League.”

Freeedman is developing a reputation of developing young players as a manager, with Nathaniel Clyne and Wilfried Zaha starring under the Scot’s guidance.

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