Striker Connor Wickham played for the first time since the 2-1 away victory at Chelsea at the end of August, having been sidelined with a niggling calf problem., when he started for the development side this afternoon against Bristol City.
He played for 60 minutes of the 1-0 home defeat at Selhurst Park, but - despite the result - he was pleased to be out there and feels he is ready to return to first team duties, which will excite Eagles fans desperate to see more of the summer signing.
"On a personal note, it was good for me to be back out there," he said. "It felt good, I felt good. Obviously, I'm not as fit or as sharp as I will be in a few weeks time, but it's all just a work in progress and I'm happy to be back."
Asked when he thinks he'll be ready to return to Alan Pardew's senor squad, Wickham replied without hesitation: "Straight away.
"I'm back playing because I'm fit. I'm injury-free, touch wood, hopefully [I'll be back soon] - the sooner the better."
You can watch a full post-match video interview with Wickham, another with Aaron Bissaka and under-21s highlights HERE