Patrick Vieira looking to add more experience to Crystal Palace squad

Patrick Vieira wants to add “a little bit more” experience to his Crystal Palace side this transfer window.

The Eagles have made four permanent signings this summer. Defensive midfielder Cheick Dourouce, who became the club’s third-most expensive signing, joined from French side Lens in a deal worth an initial £18million.

Bermondsey-raised winger Malcolm Ebiowei joined after leaving Derby County, with Palace reportedly beating Manchester United, Tottenham and Monaco to the 18-year-old’s signature.

22-year-old centre-back Chris Richards has arrived from Bayern Munich and will provide competition for Marc Guehi and Joachim Andersen.

And Sam Johnstone, 29, arrived on a free transfer from West Brom and will be pushing Vicente Guaita for the number one spot in the starting line up.

The two loan spots in the squad have yet to be filled.

The Frenchman explained that he thought his side was still “short on numbers” heading into his second season in charge at Selhurst Park.

“All over the field,” said Vieira, of where he believes his Palace side is currently lacking depth.

“We have a young squad with some young players. I believe it’s good to have that young talent, but they will need the support from the experienced players, and anything can happen. 

“We’re looking forward to improving that side of the game. We need a little bit more experience. 

“We have a couple of players who need support to take a little bit of that pressure off their shoulders to allow them to express themselves.

“The market is open. Anything can happen, players coming or leaving. We identify the profile of the players we want, and now people are working to try to make it happen.”

Due to the squad being separated for pre-season, with only 10 first-team senior players making the trip to Australia and Singapore and the rest of the squad staying in South London with assistant manager Osian Roberts, Vieira had a chance to take a closer look at the club’s academy players.

Vieira handed starts to Jesurun Rak-Sakyi and Killian Phillips during the games against Liverpool and Manchester United. David Ozoh, 18, was in the starting line up for the final test against Leeds United.

Crystal Palace v Manchester United, Premier League, Selhurst Park, 22 May 2022
Picture: Keith Gillard

“They’ve got talent,” added Vieira.

“Some of them still have a lot to do. They have to keep working on some sides of the game to be a Premier League player. 

“But it’s important for us, as a football club, to create the kind of pathway for them to keep challenging themselves and help them grow as a player.”

VIEIRA PICTURE: PA

RAK-SAKYI PICTURE: KEITH GILLARD

DOUCOURE PICTURE: CPFC

 

 


 

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