Crystal Palace have confirmed the signing of Reading winger Michael Olise in a deal worth £8m, making him the first new arrival since Patrick Vieira was appointed as manager earlier this month.
19-year-old Olise, who was one of the Championship’s top attacking players last season, has signed a long-term contract with Palace that promises to keep him at Selhurst Park until the summer of 2025. He will wear the number seven shirt most recently occupied by Max Meyer.
“It’s a big moment - Premier League football. It’s a great club and I’m very excited to be here. Good players, a good manager, so I’m ready to start,” the youngster told CPFC.co.uk.
The Eagles have already had recent success dipping into the Championship for young talent following last year's capture of Eberechi Eze from QPR and will hoping for similar hit with Olise.
Vieira commented, “We have the tools in our football club to make him a better player, and we’ve known him quite well because he’s a player the football club have been following for a long time.
“I think it is important to refresh the squad, to bring some new faces, to bring young talent here, and this is a really good signing for us.”
Earlier this week, 90min revealed that Liverpool, Manchester City and Chelsea had all expressed interest in Olise, while he was also the subject of attention from the likes of Paris Saint-Germain, Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund and Monaco.
Olise’s arrival will form part of a crucial squad overhaul at Palace ahead of the new season. Aside from bidding farewell to Roy Hodgson and welcoming new boss Vieira, as many as 11 first-team players have left as free-agents, including Andros Townsend and Patrick van Aanholt.
But rebuilding is something that Vieira, in his first managerial role in England, is looking forward to.
“It is a project that is really appealing to me,” he said when his appointment was confirmed. “The club has fantastic foundations in place after many years in the Premier League, and I hope we can make further improvements and continue to drive the club forward.”