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Chelsea midfielder Conor Gallagher looking to learn from Patrick Vieira at Crystal Palace

Box-to-box excellence

AFC Bournemouth v Chelsea - Pre Season Friendly - Vitality Stadium Photo by Kieran Cleeves/PA Images via Getty Images

It’s been an exciting summer at Crystal Palace, with a new young manager in Patrick Vieira and five new young signings coming in, including Chelsea loanee Conor Gallagher, who’s certainly looking forward to his time in South London over the next 9-10 months.

Part of that is of course learning from a legend of the game — midfield excellence doesn’t come much higher than Vieira — but being part of a bit of youth rebuild is also enticing, especially with many familiar faces around already, such as fellow Chelsea prospects Marc Guéhi and Michael Olise, the Hammersmith-born teenager who also got his youth career started at Chelsea before getting his big break at Reading and joining Palace for around £8m this summer.

“I spoke to the manager, I liked what he said, I liked how he wants to play, how he wants me to play and how he wants the team to play. I feel like I can learn from him and the players around me. I think that’s the main thing. I feel like [playing box to box] suits me perfectly, which is one of the reasons why I came here and the way he wants to play as well. Hopefully that can help me show what I can do.”

“[With Marc Guéhi] we grew up through the Academy at Chelsea, we were at Swansea together and now here, so we’re like best mates. I’m really happy he’s here. [I also know Eberechi] Eze. He was with us at England. I know Michael Olise, he was a bit younger than me through the Academy at Chelsea. Nathan Ferguson, good mates with him through England. There are a lot of boys here that I’m friendly with.”

-Conor Gallagher; source: Crystal Palace FC

Sounds like Gallagher’s in a good place — no wonder he rejected Leeds United! — and hopefully he will indeed excel.

We’ll be watching!