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Crystal Palace academy star Reise Allassani aims for first team place

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PALACE Academy star Reise Allassani has one aim this summer – to break into the Ian Holloway's first-team squad.

The 17-year-old has been hotly tipped to be the next youngster to come through the club's youth system on the back of his impressive performances over the past year.

"Hopefully I'm going to get into the first-team squad this summer," Allassani said. "The U21s is good but I'd like to push on if I can.

"It depends on what the manager wants but my aim is to get into the first team and then if not, we'll have to see what happens.

"My aim now is to score lots of goals, and if we're not in the Premier League, I want to get Palace there.

"I loved watching Thierry Henry for Arsenal in the top flight while I was growing up."

And the England U17 international has enjoyed playing for the U21 development squad in front of a decent-sized attendance at home, which included a recent game against Premier League champions Manchester City.

"When I saw Micah Richards and Maicon were playing, I was chuffed to see them warming up near to me," said Allassani.

"We've played against some top players this season. I played against Kolo Toure earlier this season in the home fixture, it's just been a really good experience against different clubs.

"Even in the U21s games, the fans come to watch and you can hear them.

"They're passionate, and I remember the game last summer at Dulwich Hamlet when I came on, they were great cheering us on."

One player Allassani picked out as a big influence on him is the latest product to come from the Academy – a certain Welsh international.

He said: "Jonny Williams is a great example for me to look at – he's a great player.

"He's not too similar to me but he's one I look to, often.

"I speak to him quite a bit and get advice from him, and he tells me about the step up from the Academy.

"If you ask him something, he's always there to talk to you."

And one man who has guided the youngster through the Palace youth ranks is current U18 coach Ben Garner, who Allassani points to as big help on his game and style of play.

"I've had Ben since the U13s and he has really helped me to improve a lot," he said.

"This season when I've been with the U21 squad, Ben has also been there, so it was refreshing and he has helped my game a lot.

"I can play on the left wing or just behind the striker."

Crystal Palace academy star Reise Allassani aims for first team place


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