Patrick Vieira backs young Crystal Palace squad to return after Chelsea disappointment

Before Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Mason Mount scored to send Thomas Tuchel’s side to their second domestic cup final of the season, Palace had caused Chelsea problems.

Edouard Mendy was forced into a quick and reactionary save by Cheikou Kouyate after his snap volley in the best moment of the first half. Even when trailing 2-0, Joachim Andersen could have put in a tense finish had he been able to direct his free header towards goal.

In the end, Palace’s FA Cup campaign ended at Wembley on Easter Sunday, although the fact that they made it there shows just how impressive Vieira is doing.

Less than a year into his tenure, the former Arsenal captain has overseen a rapid rebuild, focusing on developing young players and embracing a more progressive brand of football following the Roy Hodgson era.

Speaking after the match, Vieira told ITV Sport: “I don’t know if it was a fair reflection [a 2-0 loss], in the first half we frustrated them a lot, we had chances and in the situation we could have played them better. Against these teams it’s all about taking a chance and we didn’t and they did.

“I believe that these kind of games with a lot of tension will make us a better team. We had chances but we didn’t score but sometimes we didn’t give the ball away at the right time.

“We just have to keep going. It’s the kind of game the players, the manager and the club want to be involved in. We have to keep building the team and working well. The fans were amazing today and thank you again for their support.

“We were close but there is still a big gap between us and Chelsea.”


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