Interview with Crystal Palace Youth Player Reise Allassani

PitchSideTalk interviews rising Crystal Palace youngster Reise Allassani.

Reise has played in Palace’s academy for almost 10 years now and despite his young age he has already impressed while playing well above his age group. Now aged 16, Reise is featuring regularly for Crystal Palace’s U21’s as well as representing England Youth. The versatile attacker has been tipped for a big future and PitchSideTalk had the pleasure of catching up with him about his football life so far…

Reise Allassani
Age: 16
Club: Crystal Palace
Position: Wide or Attacking Midfielder / Forward
Preferred Foot: Right
Attributes: Close Control, Power, Finishing

PitchSideTalk: What age did you join the Palace Academy, and who did you play for before joining them?
Reise: I joined Palace when I was 8 years old and before then I played for a local team, Glebe Football Club [a grass-roots youth club in the South East].
 
PitchSideTalk: You are known mainly as a forward, but have you always played up-top or in other positions?
Reise: No, I started off as a winger and then when I was U13’s I started playing as a No.10 (attacking midfield). At U16’s I started playing upfront but this season I’ve played as a No.10 or left midfield.
 
PitchSideTalk: What’s your best experience so far in football?
Reise: Scoring for England U16’s on my debut against Wales U16s. Also winning player of the tournament in Holland during U14’s and winning player of the tournament in the Hibernia Trophy in Ireland at U15’s.
 
PitchSideTalk: And how about your worst experience in Football, although hopefully there hasn’t been many?
Reise: Losing in the final of a tournament in Holland when I was U14’s, we lost on penalties.
 
PitchSideTalk: What was it like to be called up to play for England?
Reise: It is great being called up for your country; it gives you great confidence and is a real honour.
 
PitchSideTalk: CPFC have produced some excellent young players recently, does it inspire you that you’re at a club that brings through youth players?
Reise: Yeah definitely, when you look at Wilf [Wilfred Zaha], Jonny [Williams] and others it gives you hope that you will play in the future like they have.
 
PitchSideTalk: You mention these young first team players, how many opportunities have you had to play with the first team?
Reise: I first trained with the 1st team when I was 15, but now I’ve been training with the U21’s. Training with the first team is a lot faster than the youth but I have found it alright in the past.
 
 

Allassani on his Youth International Debut for England (source:google)

PitchSideTalk: Who is the best player you have played with and why?
Reise: Probably Jonny Williams when I’ve trained with him. He works so hard and is excellent dribbling with the ball.
 
PitchSideTalk: Team you support as a fan?
Reise: Arsenal.
 
PitchSideTalk: Favourite player?
Reise: My favourite players are Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and I also like Sergio Aguero.
 
PitchSideTalk: Best player you have met?
Reise: Best player I’ve met, the defender David Luiz.
 
PitchSideTalk: And finally, what is your ultimate dream?
Reise: My ultimate dream is to play at the very top level and to become a senior England international.
 
Allassani scoring on his England debut against Wales U16’s
 
Thanks to Reise Allassani for his time for this interview. PitchSideTalk wishes him the very best of luck and for a bright future.
Thoughts/Comments Welcome. Tweet @pitchsidetalk or comment below!
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