Pardew wants Wickham to emulate Kane

Connor Wickham should replicate Tottenham's Harry Kane, who Alan Pardew considers to be the best striker in the Premier League.

Tottenham's Harry Kane is the best goalscorer in the Premier League and Connor Wickham should try to emulate him, says Crystal Palace coach Alan Pardew

Kane has scored 12 goals in 22 top-flight fixtures so far this season, compared to just the one managed by Wickham - though his season has been interrupted with injuries.

Although Riyad Mahrez, Odion Ighalo, Jamie Vardy and Romelu Lukaku have all scored more than Kane this season, Pardew considers the Tottenham striker the best in the league.

Having welcomed Wickham back from a thigh strain in the defeat to Aston Villa last week, the 54-year-old hopes he can replicate the development of Kane.

"Spurs have the best goalscorer in the Premier League, in my opinion – Harry Kane. If Kane was in our team we'd be in the top four," the Palace boss said.

"Wickham coming back to us has given us a huge lift. If he gets goals on the back of his performances we're going to have a real player," he added.

"People will start talking about Connor Wickham and not Harry Kane if Connor starts adding goals."

However, with Palace failing to score a goal in each of their last five Premier League matches, Pardew is keen to boost their striking options with a big-name signing.

Free agent Emmanuel Adebayor remains a target, but he insists the club will only look to complete sensible transfers.

"Adebayor, and a couple of others that have been mentioned, we're still going down the line of. We're after somebody who would fit into our group. It'd be nice to see a big player come in," Pardew said.

"We're having one of those seasons where it's been terrific, but we're having a bit of a lull. We can give ourselves a lift [with a signing] so it makes sense, for our fans and the players.

"We have to be realistic. Some of the figures being bandied about for good players, not great players, are massive.

"We mustn't get out-priced. It's difficult for us, West Ham, Everton to pitch in and not expose ourselves.

"Most of the Premier League clubs are operating at a healthy level, so it's important we keep our heads and only do deals that benefit both clubs."