Crystal Palace ‘know how good’ Michael Olise can be - but he needs time, warns Patrick Vieira

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  • Crystal Palace
    Crystal Palace
    LiveTodayTomorrowvs--|
  • Patrick Vieira
    French association football manager and former player
  • Michael Olise
    French association football player
 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Patrick Vieira hailed match-winner Michael Olise after the winger inspired Crystal Palace to a comeback win at Millwall but warned he must be more consistent before he is ready to be a Premier League regular.

Olise, 20, made it two goals in as many games and set up the winner for Jean-Philippe Mateta as Palace recovered from a goal down at half-time to progress to the FA Cup fourth-round.

Olise curled a brilliant finish into the far corner within 90 seconds of the restart, and hit the post with a carbon copy effort four minutes later, before crossing for Mateta to head into an empty net.

“He was fantastic in the second half,” Vieira said after the 2-1 win at the Den. “I think he changed the game for us. The first 15 minutes of the second half, he was really good and he showed his talent, that was really good for us as a team.

“Having Jordan [Ayew] at the Africa Cup of Nations, it will give him obviously more time to play in the Premier League. What is important is when you look at the first half and second half, it is two different players.

“It shows there is fantastic potential in the player but at the same time he needs time to keep developing himself. Those games he will play in the future will help him to develop. We know how good he can be and now what is important for us is to work together to improve that talent.

“All the players are impatient. They all want to play and this is what I like about Michael, about [Eberechi] Eze. They want to be on the field and want to play. There job is to make it difficult for me and when you look at the way both of them played today, yes I will have a difficult decision to make in the next couple of weeks.”

Millwall took the lead in the 17th-minute following a howler by Palace goalkeeper Jack Butland. Under pressure from Benik Afobe and Tom Bradshaw, Butland miscued a clearance, allowing Afobe to roll into an empty net.

“He has a really strong character,” Vieira said. “He’s surrounded by people who wish him well. He understands the mistake and as a manager and a football club we’ll give him the support he needs. He’ll bounce back.

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

“He’s an international player and of course when you don’t play a lot of football the confidence is not there. But overall the way he’s been working since I’ve been in the football club, the way he was supporting players when he’s not in the starting XI, has been brilliant. I’m really glad to have players like that around the team.

“He needs to believe in himself,” Vieira added. “We need to give him that confidence. He needs to play games as well. The quality is there. It’s just the confidence he needs to have in his head.”

Millwall fans booed as Palace’s players took the knee before kick-off and subjected Chelsea loanee Conor Gallagher to homophobic chanting, while Olise was hit by a bottle thrown from the stands. Palace fans let off smoke flares and one was thrown onto the pitch after Mateta’s winner.

“We as a football club are against any kind of discrimination,” Vieira said.

“Of course this is not something we want to see on the field. Taking the knee is something we are really proud to take and it is the same for any football club and player making the decision. What is important is to show that as a football club we are against discrimination.”

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