Date: 6th August 2017 at 5:37pm
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Christian Benteke and Andros Townsend have both been giving their thoughts following the weekend’s draw against Schalke.

Taking a one all draw from the game as we continued our preparations for the coming Premier League season, Benteke’s goal just past the hour mark secured the draw, but the Belgian forward believes we could’ve gone on and won the game.

Speaking to Crystal Palace FC in his post game press conference, he explained that he was pleased with the performance of the team and he felt we were making good progress under Frank de Boer.

‘We can be happy with how we played in the draw and obviously the manager has a certain way of how he wants us to play so this match gave us another opportunity to work on that against strong opponents. They are a good side with have a history of finishing in a good position in their league each season. We played some good football in this match ourselves and can hopefully take that into the next game.’

Finding the net himself in the game, he did admit some disappointment at not having more goals to his name across pre season.

‘It was nice to see the goal go in for me finally after being frustrated against Metz last weekend when a couple of my chances hit the woodwork but today I was in the right place and hope to be scoring more throughout the season ahead.’

As for de Boer’s new system and the way in which he wants us to play, Benteke went on to say.

‘The way that the manager wants us to play means we have the opportunity to have more of the ball in games and all players will get chances to show the strengths of their game. My own game has to change in this system because the ball will be on the ground more as we try and build up from the back, it`s going to be interesting to see it in action because it gives players great chances to do things when they have the ball at their feet while for me I will be looking to score goals for the team.’

With Jason Lokilo’s emergence this pre season, Benteke said he wasn’t surprised given the quality he has despite his tender age of 18.

‘He is a young player with a lot of quality, we are all trying to help him because it is not easy but we want to see his game progress as he continues to have the chance to play in the side.’

As for Townsend, he too spoke of changing systems and Schalke, but he was just delighted to now be on the verge of the season starting properly.

‘Schalke are a top side so it was always going to be difficult, we did well to get a draw and looking back at the game I felt we played we can take positives into next week when it matters at the start of another season.’

As for his position under de Boer, he went on to say he was adjusting to it.

‘It is completely new to me and I have never done this current position before on a regular basis but towards the end of last season I was playing as a wing back more times than not. We are doing a lot of work on formations in training so I am getting used to the position more every day as I work tirelessly to get it right.’

Reflecting on pre season as a whole.

‘It`s been good and going to Hong Kong and playing against two Premier League sides was good preparation for what is ahead and then we went to Metz, which was enjoyable and from a personal point of view it was good to get an assist under my belt. We finish pre-season against another top side with a draw in front of our own fans which can only give us lots of confidence. It is always exciting when a new season comes around and having a home game to start makes it more special and hopefully we can give the fans some optimism from day one this season.’

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