Cole Palmer has surprise role in Michael Olise to Chelsea transfer as clear message says it all

Michael Olise
-Credit: (Image: Rob Newell - CameraSport/CameraSport via Getty Images)

Michael Olise is a man of very few words. Even in the announcement of his contract extension last year at Crystal Palace there are no quotes from the player.

His short interviews have become a bit of a trend online, especially following an extremely blunt assessment of a goal scored against West Ham in 2022. Having cut inside onto his left foot and let a curling, dipping, swerving, possibly deflected effort fly, his reaction was about as animated as Olise gets.

He took a few quick steps over to the travelling Palace fans before opening his arms out wide, standing there and letting everyone else flock to him. Afterwards he was asked about the goal. "I think Wilf [Zaha] passed me the ball, shot, scored." When asked how it felt to score he added, "It was a good feeling." And that was that.

There isn't much more from Olise in general. When conducting an in-house interview with a nervous Palace security guard - who wasn't expecting to be part of the video or to have to deal with Olise's lack of words - he was just as short. Some would say it is rude of the Frenchman, but in reality it is just who he is.

Erling Haaland has previously been criticised for his style of answering questions. Far from spikey or combustible, it is the lack of words that frustrates. After all, these are world-class footballers that people want to hear from. But as with Haaland, and Chelsea's Cole Palmer, it is just not who Olise is.

He is described as a player who remains this relaxed and down to earth in Palace training. On the pitch he rarely goes big with his celebrations, and it's even more unlikely that the few words he does get out afterwards will be significant or in-depth.

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It took Eberechi Eze to get him even vaguely out of his shell following the 4-0 win over Manchester United earlier this year. Even then, Olise offered very little. It speaks a lot for the player that he is as unflashy as he is off the field when being so central to the spectacle when on it.

Against Wolves at the of last season he managed a similar goal. Finding space on the edge of the box, Olise shifted inside onto that left foot, bent the ball into the far corner, and then proceeded not to react at all. There is almost a sense of arrogance with it.

Not in a bad way, but in what Jamie Carragher described as 'football arrogance' when speaking about Palmer in November. There are certainly crossovers between the pair.

Palmer is about as deadpan as they come. Perhaps only Olise can actually rival him on this. The way Chelsea's newfound star talks about his own magic in such a self-deprecating or unappreciative way can feel put on but again, this is just who Palmer is.

He has embraced the 'Cold Palmer' nickname and taken on a new celebration. He manages to remain the coolest character in the hottest moments, speaking of 101st-minute winners against Manchester United and last gasp equalisers to stop former club City like they are nothing.

Olise himself lets the conversation exist around him. Last year he deleted all of his Instagram posts, creating a furious explosion of debate and theory. His reaction is to keep providing for Palace, to celebrate himself with a finger against his temple like Marcus Rashford and another pressed against his lips.

Without being taken away it, they are both the story. Engulfed in it all, surrounded by the talk, but never effected or impacted, it seems.

The truth is that both players are so confident in their abilities and see much more to come, that there is little to say right now. It is a cliche to write that they let their football do the talking, but they really do. Both of them see their achievements as expected. Their exploits are the remarkable successes of young attackers but a representation of the skill they know they have.

Having players at this age - both 22 - remain so grounded says a lot about their mentality, attitude, and focus. Scoring goals, providing assists, and starring for their respective clubs, is simply an expectation rather than an end-piece for them both.

Listen to Palmer speak and he truly believes that despite having only started three Premier League games before his summer transfer last year, he was always good enough to have the season he just did. He may have been the only one that saw it coming to that extent, but it's not a bad thing.

There was very little fanfare around him upon his arrival and that arguably helped. Now, with Olise a player Chelsea are interested in, the pathway towards making him a key part of the team is there. Just like Palmer, the noise won't matter.

They are both so assured in their own abilities it makes the rest largely irrelevant. It is not grand statements that make great footballers, but performances to back up the swagger they carry. Olise has this in spades and then some.

In a data-driven world it is these intangibles that can make the real difference. They are elements of a player and character that cannot be defined. It is somethings clubs are always seeking to learn about when doing background ahead of a transfer. For Olise it could hardly be any more obvious. And for Chelsea that is a huge plus.