Date: 13th March 2018 at 8:00am
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Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson has heaped praise on youngster Aaron Wan-Bissaka for how he’s taken to life in the first team.

Although Palace are without a point once more going back to the match with Newcastle United at the beginning of February, we have of course played Everton, Tottenham Hotspur, Manchester United and Chelsea since then, and 20 year old Academy product Wan-Bissaka has played in the last three games.

He caught the eye of Hodgson in our under 23 group and clearly didn’t look out of place when he stepped up to first team training and although Palace have ongoing injury issues this season, his performance level has continued to impress the former England man.

Speaking to Crystal Palace FC to reflect on his progress so far, in light of the game against Chelsea at the weekend the gaffer explained.

‘My coaching staff and I have believed in him since the first moments we saw him playing for the under 23s and then from the times we have had him training with us which has been for a while now we have always thought this is a player who can do a good job in the Premier League.’

Hodgson went on to say with youngsters you have to be careful about their introduction but given our form this year putting in a fresh eager face can spark something amongst the group – whether it’s forced or by gamble.

‘In Aaron`s case the moment came because It was thrust upon us and we didn`t have anyone else to play in that position because the competition had disappeared. But certainly he has done ever so well and I think it will be for the competition getting fit to be worried about him to try and make certain they can knock him off his perch because you don`t get tougher games than matches against Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester United.’

He added.

‘He has now played against a number of quality players and come through both (recent) games with flying colours so at the moment he has the shirt and it will now be up to the people getting fit to make certain they try to get the shirt from him rather than the other way round.’

There’s Only One Aaron Bissaka does have a nice ring to it as another clearly talented player comes through the ranks, and he does have his head screwed on, saying himself about the chance that came his way.

‘I am excited with it but it`s always a challenge but it`s a challenge I am going to take and do what I can.’

Reflecting on the Chelsea game itself, he added.

‘We didn`t start off that well but we kept our heads in the game and in the second half went at it and gave it all we had and I think eventually we will get there.’

With Huddersfield Town next up, his first aim is keeping the shirt and the second will no doubt be earning it for the next match.

‘Personally mine is to stay in the team again, carry on training hard and we will see what happens on that day.’

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