By Sam Stone

4th Nov, 2022 | 12:23pm

Joe Whitworth among trio of teenagers Crystal Palace want tied down to new contracts - reliable journalist

Crystal Palace are looking to tie down a trio of 18-year-old academy prospects to new contracts at Selhurst Park according to Richard Cawley.

It’s understood England under-19 international Joe Whitworth is a priority for the Eagles along with fellow shot-stopper Owen Goodman.

South London Press journalist Cawley also reported (4 November) that midfielder Jack Wells-Morrison is also being earmarked for a new contract in South London.

Smart stuff

This is a smart move by Palace, who are known for giving younger players a chance, whether that be from their academy or players they have pinched from the Championship. Wilfried Zaha is the best example of a player who has come through the ranks at Selhurst Park and gone on to be a huge success.

Younger players know they will be given the chance in South London and getting them tied down to longer-term contracts protects the Eagles if bigger teams circle for any of their best assets. All three players have featured on the bench for Crystal Palace in the 2022/23 campaign which shows Patrick Vieira is certainly casting a keen eye over the academy.

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Eberechi Eze and Michael Olise are the latest generation of younger players to take Palace’s first team by storm. Despite neither coming through the academy at Selhurst Park, both joined the club as raw talents and have developed immensely since their arrival. Eze in particular has been in fine form this season and could well be set for a World Cup call-up into Gareth Southgate’s provisional squad.

In other Football Wonderkids news, Michael Owen insists Phil Foden can win the Ballon d’Or