Back in the summer of 2017, Crystal Palace announced that Frank de Boer had replaced Sam Allardyce as the club’s new manager.
The Dutchman took over from the 64-year-old following his resignation as Eagles chief earlier in the close season, this all despite leading the Londoners to Premier League safety following his appointment as Alan Pardew’s successor back in December 2016.
Yet chairman Steve Parish sought a different direction for his side in opting for former Ajax and Inter Milan boss de Boer as the club’s new boss, an appointment met with much excitement and optimism from several Palace fans on Twitter…
Happy Happy Monday great choice of manager & absolutely luving the away kit #Eagles
— Karen Sells-Brown (@sellsey) June 26, 2017
Premiere league champions 17/18
— Alex (@TAKTIKT0E) June 26, 2017
CRYSTAL PALACE EUROPA LEAGUE WINNERS 18/19
— Ryan (@powerfulrya) June 26, 2017
— HK Eagles (@HK_CPFC) June 26, 2017
@CEO4TAG brilliant news. Great appointment but Steve that sponsor is embarrassing
— Rui (@ruicatoffical) June 26, 2017
Just happy to welcome you to Palace!
— Antonio Forina (@AntonioForina) June 26, 2017
Fantastic news !! Welcome Frank and please, stay for a few years #CPFC
— Richard Foote (@richardfoote) June 26, 2017
But things went very wrong very quickly for the 48-year-old in losing his job after just four Premier League matches, with it clear that Parish’s huge gamble in appointing the Dutchman backfired quite spectacularly.
Ultimately, there were a few raised eyebrows when de Boer was selected as Allardyce’s successor back in June 2017, with it clear that Palace would be moving away from a more direct style to one focused on ball retention and possession under the Dutchman.
That itself was something of a gamble from chairman Parish given the success Allardyce had with that squad of players the season before, eventually leading the club to a safe 15th place finish in the Premier League to maintain their top-flight status.
And it proved to be too big a change in too short a period of time as de Boer simply wasn’t afforded the time to get his ideas across, with the 48-year-old in charge for just five matches in all competitions before Parish eventually pulled the plug on his short reign at Selhurst Park in September 2017.
And the statistics don’t make for great reading for de Boer given his one and only victory came in the Carabao Cup in narrowly edging past Ipswich Town, with his four Premier League games yielding no points and indeed no goals – it was a shocking start to the campaign.
Yes, only time would have told whether or not the 48-year-old was able to get Palace playing the way he wanted to pick up points along the way, but the fact that Roy Hodgson came in following his departure and led the team to 11th place last term suggested that Parish was right to make a change when he did.
However, what it did highlight was the huge error of judgement Parish made in appointing de Boer in the first place – it was clear from day one that the Dutchman was going to need time to implement his style on the Eagles squad, so to be afforded under three months seems very harsh indeed.
But with Palace routed to the bottom of the division without a point or indeed a goal, it’s hardly a surprise a change was made, with those Palace fans raving about de Boer’s appointment very much proved wrong as Parish’s huge gamble backfired spectacularly.
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