Joel Ward: It’s exciting time to be at Crystal Palace

Joel Ward says it’s an exciting time to be a Crystal Palace player after penning a new two-year deal at the club.

Ward signed for the Eagles in May 2012 from Portsmouth, and has made 273 appearances for the South London-club.

The 31-year-old’s contract expired on July 1, but he has now extended his nine year stay at Selhurst Park.

Speaking to Palace TV, Ward said: “I’m delighted to have signed a new two year contract. It’s great to have committed my future to the club.

“It’s an exciting time for the club and the way in which things are shaping up, with the new manager coming in and the staff as well, it’s going to be an exciting period.

“The summer was the same as always, I ticked over, I make sure I keep myself fit and come back in as good a shape as possible. Whether that’s doing some training while I’m away or training locally.

“I make sure I try and look after myself, so when you come back in, you can hit the ground running and slot straight back in. That’s what the culture is like now, so you can come back and be ready to go.

“When a new manager comes in, it brings about change. Change is good at times and there’s a different way of thinking and it gives players that haven’t been on a great run the chance to impress and wipe the slate clean.

“Even for the young lads coming through, it gives them a chance to express themselves and put themselves on the radar as well.

“There’s certain things that have remained the same since I’ve been here and that keeps the club the club.

“But in a lot of areas there has been a huge amount of change, and we’re at a pivotal stage now where things are progressing with the academy.

“Things are moving in the right direction and hopefully we can continue to progress in the right way.”



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