Crystal Palace boss Patrick Vieira has requested people not to get carried away with the form of Conor Gallagher.
The central midfielder joined Vieira’s side in July, on a season-long loan from Chelsea. He has got off to a brilliant start at Selhurst Park, impressing fans with his mature performances.
Gallagher opened his Palace account with two goals against West Ham on August 28. He also registered an assist in the recent 3-0 victory over Tottenham, during which debutant Odsonne Edouard bagged a brace.
The 21-year-old’s form has led to calls for a first England start in the next international break.
But Vieira thinks fans and pundits need to show caution. “This is the biggest problem in our world, when we have one or two performances, we always think that he deserves a national call and I still believe that he needs to be more consistent in his performance,” the Frenchman said.
“I think he has abilities but I believe – as well – it is too early for the call for him.
“He still has to improve but all the credit to Chelsea because he’s not just a really good footballer, he’s a good human being and he’s a really good person as well.
“We’ve been working with him and talking with him and I think his time will come.
“But first what he needs to do is to perform on a consistent basis to allow him to go higher to the international level, but he needs to perform well week in week out with us, with the under-21s and that will allow him to go to the national team – but at the moment I think his focus has to be with us.
“How can he repeat these kind of performances that he’s had over the last couple of matches.”
Gallagher is a ten-time England U21 international who looks set for a bright future. He may even force his way into Thomas Tuchel’s thinking next season, should his fine form continue.
Vieira ‘really happy’ for Palace debutant
Following the win over Tottenham, Vieira praised Edouard for his great eye for goal. The Frenchman scored with practically his first touch in a Palace shirt, sending a shot through Ben Davies’ legs and into the bottom corner.
He then made it two for the day minutes later, beating Hugo Lloris with a left-footed shot.
Vieira said: “It is a dream start for him. He came on and there was more space and that allowed him to score those goals.
“For him to come on and score those two goals, it is really good for him. It will give him belief and more confidence to do well for the team.
“I am really happy for him because it will help the team in the future.”