Wow. Wow, wow, wow. The Patrick Vieira era has certainly kicked off now, after today’s incredible 3-0 win over Tottenham at Selhurst Park.
From start to finish, we were hungry for the ball, eager to push forward, and defensively imperious.
In fact, Harry Kane – of all people – failed to have a touch inside an opponent’s box for the first time in his Premier League career today, according to Opta.
That says it all.
Sadly, amid the many, many positives, we’re now quite concerned about the future of Jean-Philippe Mateta after he was axed from the squad entirely.
What’s the situation?
Well, with Christian Benteke granted an extended holiday due to EURO 2020, Mateta featured heavily throughout pre-season.
The Frenchman struggled, and was dropped for the Belgian when Brentford came to visit once Benteke had regained some fitness.
Now, with Odsonne Edouard, Will Hughes and Michael Olise added to the bench for the first time, Mateta was nowhere to be seen.
That is quite worrying. If he can’t make the bench now, how will he fare when Ebere Eze, Jeffrey Schlupp and Nathan Ferguson are fit?
Jean-Philippe Mateta hasn’t had much luck at Crystal Palace
After Edouard’s debut double, and Vieira’s preference to use just one centre-forward, it’s surely between him and Benteke for the role.
Mateta is already the forgotten man, just four games into the Premier League season.
The 24-year-old simply hasn’t done enough, although he hasn’t had much luck in south London to be fair to him.
After his stunning, back-heel nutmeg finish against Brighton to mark his first Crystal Palace goal, Roy Hodgson never gave him another start, in what was a cruel move by the 74-year-old.
Under Vieira, Mateta’s only Premier League outing came against Chelsea, where he barely touched the ball as we struggled at Stamford Bridge.
Things just haven’t fallen into place for the Frenchman, and it seems unfathomable that we’ll make his loan deal into a permanent move.