Cole Palmer reacts to Enzo Maresca appointment and Chelsea signings copying his celebration

Cole Palmer has been limited to two substitute appearances at Euro 2024 (Picture: Getty)

Chelsea star Cole Palmer says he is looking forward to reuniting with new manager Enzo Maresca later this summer and has been flattered to see the club’s new signings Estevao Willian and Kendry Paez copying his celebration.

Palmer completed a deadline day move from Manchester City to Chelsea on September 1 2023 and eyebrows were raised over the 22-year-old’s £40million price tag, given he had made just 19 appearances in the Premier League under Pep Guardiola up until that point.

But Palmer surpassed expectations across a phenomenal debut season in west London, with the forward racking up 22 goals and 11 assists in the English top flight last term which saw him named Chelsea’s Player of the Season.

Palmer was rewarded with a place in Gareth Southgate’s England squad for this summer’s European Championship, but the youngster has been limited to just two substitute appearances in Germany.

However, there is a clamour for Palmer to make the starting XI this weekend as the Three Lions prepare to do battle with Switzerland for a spot in the semi-finals against either the Netherlands or Turkey.

As his stats would suggest, Palmer clearly enjoyed his time under Mauricio Pochettino last season, despite the Blues ending the campaign without any silverware and finishing outside of the Champions League spots down in sixth.

But Pochettino departed Chelsea in May and the Argentine was swiftly replaced by Maresca, a manager who Palmer knows well from his time at Manchester City.

The England international had an extraordinary debut season with Chelsea (Picture: Getty)

Asked whether it helps that he has worked with Maresca previously, Palmer told talkSPORT: ‘Yeah, it helps a lot because, you know, we don’t have to go back and meet a new manager and build a relationship and stuff.

‘I already know him from the Under-21s at City, I had him for a full season.

‘Then he left and came back and joined Pep.’

Chelsea have been busy in the transfer market already this summer, completing deals for South American wonderkids Estevao Willian and Kendry Paez, who will join up with the club in 2025.

Brazilian forward Estevao and Ecuadorian midfielder Paez, both aged 17, have both dropped Palmer’s ‘cold’ celebration since signing for the club and the Englishman says it has been ‘nice’ but ‘a bit weird’ to see other players copy his trademark move.

Quizzed on how he feels about players copying the celebration, Palmer replied: ‘Yeah, I saw a few players do it.

‘The two young lads who have signed for Chelsea have done it and I think a few others players as well.

‘It’s funny, isn’t it? It’s nice. Obviously they’re going to be playing with us next year so it’s nice.’

Asked if he has told them they can’t take his celebration, Palmer replied: ‘No, they’re not taking it, they’re just trying to [emulate] me.’

‘It’s a bit weird, yeah, but it is what it is.’

Palmer hopes he has given Southgate a ‘decision’ to make with his eye-catching displays off the bench ahead of England’s quarter-final encounter with Switzerland in Dusseldorf.

‘Obviously I want to start like everyone wants to start,’ he explained.

‘But if I don’t start then I’ve got to try and make enough of an impact off the bench so I do start.

‘I’ve got to make him [Southgate] think, give him a decision.

Asked what his immediate aim is coming off the bench, Palmer replied: ‘Attack. That’s my only thought when I get the ball.

‘Obviously when I can’t then I have to go backwards but my first thing is to just go.’

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