Stephen Dobbie: from rags to goal scoring riches.
Ian Holloway managing in the Premier League…it seems quite strange doesn’t it? Despite achieving the dream in dragging Crystal Palace back to the top tier of English football, generally speaking, Holloway was only really good for the odd gag during press conferences, and his transfer policy at the club truly left a lot to be desired.
After bringing top-flight football back to Selhurst Park, good old Ian Holloway introduced no fewer than 14 players to his squad. One of whom being Scottish forward Stephen Dobbie, a man the Bristolian signed on loan twice during his stint as Blackpool manager.
An odd choice considering the plethora of talent at any Premier League sides disposal, and even odder considering the Scot only managed a paltry 111 minutes of football before being unceremoniously loaned out less than a month after his debut. So where did this fresh Premier League striker end up? Fleetwood Town. One division lower than where he started before his Palace move.
Needless to say, he didn’t play another game for the club. His fate intrinsically linked to that of Holloway, who was relieved of his duties in October 2013, Dobbie joined Bolton Wanderers in August 2015 on a free transfer – admittedly, quite far away from his long-term carer.
Now in his homeland, Stephen Dobbie turns out for Queen of the South FC in the second tier of Scottish football. And to be fair to him, it seems the gigantic step down in quality has really served to benefit him.
In September 2018, humble Dobbie was declared Europe’s most prolific marksman having scored 21 goals in 13 games in all competitions, including three hat-tricks, with an impressive strike rate of 1.62 goals per game.
Turns out he didn’t need Holloway to perform after all, just a drastically lower standard of football. Who’d have thought?
Crystal Palace fans, what are your standout memories of Stephen Dobbie (if any)? Let us know in the comments below!
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