Patrick Vieira’s to-do list as Crystal Palace stars return for first week of pre-season training

Patrick Vieira will have a lot on his hands as his Crystal Palace stars return to training.

Patrick Vieira and his Crystal Palace side have returned to training at their base in Beckenham, and will start pre-season using the academy facilities.

The main training ground is undergoing a renovation and the changing of pitches and decorating of the new dressing rooms is taking longer than initially planned.

Patrick Vieira, Manager of Crystal Palace reacts during the pre-season friendly match (Photo by Paul Harding/Getty Images)

The Eagles have had a measured approach to the on-going transfer market, having signed Derby’s highly-rated 18-year-old Malcolm Ebiowei.

They have also signed former West Brom goalkeeper Sam Johnstone, and it will be interesting to see if they can land other targets like Harry Winks or Cheick Doucouré.

The first training session will give the manager a feel of what is to come, and he will have a plan to prepare the team for the first game of the season.

So here are some of the things Patrick Vieira will be looking at and hoping that he has answers to in the coming weeks.

Christian Benteke of Crystal Palace smiles during the Premier League match (Photo by Alex Pantling/Getty Images)

The future of Christian Benteke

The Big Belgian hasn’t had much of the look in since Jean-Philippe Mateta signed his new deal, and he has not also attracted many suitors elsewhere.

Palace had hoped to secure the signature of Eddie Nketiah, which would have pushed Benteke down the order and possibly out of the club, but that wasn’t to be, so he still might have a role to play.

Ideally the club would have loved to cash in, but Benteke will happily see out his final season before saying goodbye.

What the manager needs to work out is what role he would give one of the high earners at the club.

Benteke wants to play a role at the World Cup so it will be interesting to see if he is ready to make it hard for Vieira to pick his team.

Jack Butland of Crystal Palace reacts as a flare is thrown onto the pitch during the Premier League match (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

Sort out the goalkeeping issues

Last season, both Vicente Guaita and Jack Butland shared the posts and the pair put in good performances when they got the chance.

But the imminent addition of Sam Johnson will mean one will have less game time.

Butland has had a few enquiries and there is a feeling that he could leave the club.

Vieira will hope that he is able to sort out the issue as soon as he can so that everyone knows their place.

The goalkeeping department can be very delicate so it is important to have the issues sorted ahead of the season.

Eberechi Eze of Crystal Palace looks dejected following their side's defeat in The FA Cup Semi-Final match (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)

Eze the new Gallagher

Palace are still waiting to hear back from Chelsea and Conor Gallagher but they cannot build their season around uncertainty.

The good thing is that the return of Eberechi Eze from his career-threatening injury felt like a new signing, and the midfielder will now look to kick on this season.

Vieira took his time introducing Eze to games but there will never be a better chance to get it right than preseason.

The technical team feel that he could get the eight goals Gallagher got last season, but the manager will have to work with him and ensure that he understands the enormity of the task ahead.

Jesurun Rak-Sakyi of Crystal Palace during the Premier League match (Photo by Henry Browne/Getty Images)

Jesurun Rak-Sakyi’s future at the club

This season is massive for the young Englishman as he needs to decide if he will stick around for game time or go down to the lower leagues for his next stage of development.

Not that either is a bad choice, but it is critical he gets it right and Patrick Vieira, the player and his family will have to think about it carefully before making a decision.

His pre-season form will go a long way in deciding most of the things that will happen to him, but you just know that the coming weeks are massive for him.