Sources: Palace move to tie down key star Hodgson adores to protect themselves from Zaha repeat

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Eberechi Eze and Roy Hodgson Crystal Palace Credit: Alamy
Eberechi Eze and Roy Hodgson Crystal Palace Credit: Alamy

Crystal Palace are planning new deal talks for attacker Eberechi Eze as reward for his fine form this, TEAMtalk understands.

Eze has enjoyed a superb end to the season, playing a key role in helping Palace climb clear of trouble at the wrong end of the Premier League table. Indeed, the 24-year-old has six goals in his last seven matches, including a double in last weekend’s win over Bournemouth.

The skilful attacking midfielder now has a total of 10 goals to his name this term, also providing three assists in 38 games in all competitions. That is comfortably his best tally since moving to Selhurst Park in summer 2020.

Indeed, Eze’s rich vein of form has seen him tipped for a call-up to the England senior squad. Having won eight caps for England Under-21s, many feel Eze is close to breaking into Gareth Southgate’s plans.

Eze still has two years to run on his current deal at Selhurst Park, but TEAMtalk can reveal the Eagles are planning to discuss a new contract to reflect his importance to the club’s long-term plans.

Palace are keen to sort out Eze’s future as soon as possible and in light of interest in two of their other star men. Indeed, Wilfred Zaha is out of contract this summer and attracting plenty of attention as a free agent. And another key performer, Michael Olise, is attracting interest from the likes of Paris Saint-Germain.

Hodgson adores Eberechi Eze

Eze, who cost Palace £17m London neighbours Queens Park Rangers, has recovered from a serious Achilles injury in May 2021 and has gone on to make over 90 appearances for the Eagles, scoring 15 times in total.

And the player clearly enjoys playing under Roy Hodgson, who himself has made no secret of his admiration for the Greenwich-born star.

However, despite calls to see Eze elevated into the England squad, Hodgson insists he’s not about to start telling Gareth Southgate how to do his job.

“It’s a question for Gareth I’m afraid, Gareth and [assistant manager] Steve Holland,” Hodgson told the Independent. “I know they follow the team, our team closely, they follow the players, so what I’ve seen they will have seen and it will be totally and utterly up to them if they decide if what they’re seeing is what they’re looking for.

“No one would be happier for Ebs if he got selected. But I’m certainly not going to be the person who starts making those suggestions and telling the national team coach what he should do.

“I had four years of people telling me what I should be doing. So I made a definite rule that if I ever got back into club football no one is every going to pick up a newspaper, Gareth Southgate, and hear ‘Roy Hodgson thinks’.

“Roy Hodgson thinks what he thinks, and if Gareth ever wants to know what I’m thinking he knows where to find me. We’re close enough friends for him to ask me.”

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