Crystal PalaceSport

This player is the ‘benchmark’ for his Crystal Palace team-mates

Patrick Vieira has hailed Crystal Palace’s James McArthur as the “benchmark” after the midfielder registered his second assist of the season in the 2-0 win against Wolves.

The 34-year-old captained the side on Saturday afternoon and played through Wilfried Zaha for the opener in the 61st minute with a defence-splitting pass.

McArthur has started in every game in the Premier League under Vieira and has formed an excellent partnership alongside Conor Gallagher in midfield.

“Luka is one of our captains, but Macca has the ability to bring his experience to the team,” said Vieira on McArthur. “When he is on the field, he is a fighter. He is a warrior – he will give 100 per cent on the field. The way that he is playing on the field is the way that he is playing in training every day. He is a really good example for me to use as the benchmark about how you have to conduct yourself as a professional.

“With his ability and the quality that he has, he can create and score goals as well, and that will come with the confidence and the belief. When you are in the midfield, and you can create goals and score goals, it is always good for the team – he has got the ability to do that.”

Will Hughes, who joined from Watford in the summer in a £6million deal, has yet to feature under the Frenchman and was left out of the squad for a second week running.

However, when asked if it was a tactical decision to leave the 26-year-old out of the matchday squad, Vieira said: “No, that was an injury that he had during the week. He didn’t train a lot with the team this week, so we didn’t want to take any risk. Normally, he will start training with the team next week.”


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