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Eberechi Eze has revealed he’s pinching himself working with Crystal Palace manager Patrick Vieira.

Having grown up in the Arsenal Academy system, Eze spent many of his formative years idolising Vieira’s Gunners team. now working under him, he’s working to start competing for the new Palace manager.

But, despite having been unable to play under Vieira yet, Eze has already felt his impact.

He said, “I don’t tell [Vieira] this, obviously! The first time I walked in and saw him, I felt something inside me that made me sit up. I was thinking: ‘This isn’t supposed to happen. He’s a human being just like me. I shouldn’t be doing this!’ But there’s a presence about him that is just – I don’t think I’ve had that speaking to anybody.

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“After speaking to him, he’s such a down-to-earth guy. He meets you at your level and you speak to him on your level. It’s not like this [Eze hold his hands apart, one above the other], it’s an honest conversation. So for me I can’t tell you how happen I am to be here. I’m so grateful, honestly.

“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 [v Tottenham Hotspur] was proof this works. If we take it game by game we could end up wherever.

“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. 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.”

Eze is working his way back from a snapped Achilles suffered in post-season training.

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