Vieira: Nigeria target Eze in Crystal Palace squad to face Burnley

Eberechi Eze - Crystal PalaceEberechi Eze - Crystal Palace

Crystal Palace manager Patrick Vieira has confirmed Eberechi Eze will travel with Crystal Palace for their Premier League fixture against Burnley on Saturday.

The 23-year-old former England U21 international last featured for the Eagles on May 2021 after he picked up an Achilles injury during a training session that kept him on the sidelines for six months.

According to Vieira, Eze, who played in two games for the U23s before the international break as well as an in-house friendly, will now be available for the first time competitively this season, against Burnley.

“Eze is doing really well. He played two games and 90 minutes [in an in-house friendly] and has been training with the team. He will be part of the group that travels to Burnley,” Vieira told the club’s official website.

Despite making the travelling squad, the former Arsenal midfielder has reminded Eagles supporters that he needs time to return to his full ability.

“He’s building up his confidence week after week. He played two games for the U23s and we played an in-house game and he felt really well. He’s improving but we have to give him time to get to where he was before his injury.”

In a previous interview, Eze expressed his eagerness to return and play in front of a packed Selhurst Park.

“It’s an exciting time to be a Palace fan, to be at Palace. I believe anything is possible. The players we’ve got right now and the way we played at the weekend [vs Tottenham Hotspur] was proof this works. If we take it game by game we could end up wherever,” Eze said.

“It’s a brilliant time for me; I’m just – again, I don’t want to rush, to put pressure on myself – but the day I come back is going to be beautiful for me.

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“A beautiful experience stepping out with the fans. I haven’t experienced all the fans before. It’s going to be like my debut all over again. Amazing.”

Palace, who are placed 10th on the 20-team table, will be seeking their fourth win in the top-flight against a Burnley side, who are sitting 18th with eight points from 11 matches.