Mind the gap: Patrick van Aanholt on his Crystal Palace move, Sam Allardyce and beating Sunderland

Patrick van Aanholt comes up against Sunderland tomorrow, less than a week after leaving the Black Cats for Crystal Palace
Patrick van Aanholt comes up against Sunderland tomorrow, less than a week after leaving the Black Cats for Crystal Palace

Patrick van Aanholt is backing Crystal Palace to clinch Premier League survival.

The Dutch left-back helped Sunderland win their battle for safety under Sam Allardyce last season, and he is determined to play his part in aiding new club Palace’s relegation fight.

Van Aanholt, snapped up by Eagles boss Allardyce in a £14million deal, made his debut in Tuesday night’s vital 2-0 win at Bournemouth.

Now he face a home bow against bottom club Sunderland in a potentially pivotal clash tomorrow.

“It’s an important game for the club because if we can get a win we know we will extend the gap between us and Sunderland,” said van Aanholt.

“We are at home, so we need to be confident and show everyone what we can do.

“I know the gaffer very well and he got the best out of me last season and I am sure he can do that again.

“Everyone knows how good he is and everywhere he works he gets results, so I am very positive we can move on and start winning more games.

“He puts on great training sessions, cares for the players, listens to them and is really a very good manager.”

Reflecting on Palace’s impressive success at the Vitality Stadium, the 26-year-old added on cpfc.co.uk: “There is no better way for me to start on my debut than with three points.

“I signed on Monday morning, trained with the squad later in the day and then travelled down and the gaffer put me straight in.

“We kept a clean sheet and won the game so a good start.

“It’s not just about the defenders when we keep a clean sheet, the team has to defend together and tonight was a perfect example of that.

“In this game, we were solid and compact and the clean sheet certainly helped us.

“We can see what players we have in this squad and the quality we have together.

“We showed that (at Bournemouth), but we have to continue doing the same each match.

“I have been in this position before so I know what to expect, but, as a group, we need to go onto the next game and do what we did in this one because victories bring confidence, but it’s about doing the preparation right.

“That begins on the training pitch and getting ready for the next challenge.”