Men's Team

Vieira shaping Palace in his own image say Onuoha and Sinclair

Nedum Onuoha and Trevor Sinclair have heaped praise on former City midfielder Patrick Vieira.

The Crystal Palace boss oversaw a 2-0 win over City earlier in the campaign and the in-form Eagles present a formidable challenge for the defending champions on Monday night.

Onuoha believes that Vieira’s biggest hurdle was changing the mindset the players had from the Roy Hodgson era when Palace played with a tried and tested formula, crafted over a four-year period.

“I think he has been exceptional,” said Onuoha.

“Especially when you think about the fact that Palace where almost set in their way in terms of how Roy Hodgson would coach them.

“You knew what to expect from them so to bring in change, to remove players who have been there for a long time and to sort of reinvent a football club is a very hard thing to do.

“It would be so easy for the players not to buy into it, but they have done.

“That’s testament to the respect they have for him, the respect for his coaching and you can see the results coming off the back of it.

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“They are not perfect by any means, but Crystal Palace this year are very different to Crystal Palace last year and I think that’s when you have to give the manager credit because that doesn’t happen without him.”

Trevor Sinclair says Vieira has changed in many ways from his playing days.

A colossus for Arsenal, Vieira was one of the Premier League’s greatest midfielders for almost a decade and finished his glittering career by helping City end a 35-year wait for silverware by winning the FA Cup in 2011.

“I played with Patrick and have seen him make some questionable decisions on the pitch when he was aggressive and angry,” said Sinclair.

“To see how he has adapted as a person and a coach, I think that is why you are seeing him have success because he has evolved as a person.

“He knows how to speak to young players and you can see the young players are thriving there.

“I am really pleased the way he is going about it and I wish him success, but obviously not on Monday!

“I think they have got a lot of threat going forward on the counter-attack, which is from the Roy Hodgson days, but also, they are patient now.

“If they get the ball they are not always in a rush to get it forward .Players are making angles, making themselves available to be passed to.

“They are playing a really attractive style of football, but they want to penetrate and they have got really dangerous players going forward.”

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