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Ian Holloway: Signings led to Palace exit

Ian Holloway has told the Sunday Mirror his Crystal Palace reign was doomed as a result of chairman Steve Parish’s “obsession” with adding to the squad this summer.

Ian Holloway believes team spirit was lost due to a plethora of new arrivals.
Ian Holloway believes team spirit was lost due to a plethora of new arrivals.

• Daly: More pals than points

Holloway led Palace to a surprise promotion through the playoffs last season, but he left the club last week after the Eagles lost seven of their opening eight Premier League games.

The former Blackpool boss has now said that he has significant regrets over the way the club operated in the transfer market in the summer, when the Eagles brought in 14 players, including Marouane Chamakh and record signing Dwight Gayle.

“My biggest mistake at Palace was not saying ‘no’ to chairman Steve Parish when it came to planning for life in the Premier League,” he wrote in his Mirror column. “Steve has Palace in his blood. He wants what is best for the club he loves.

“But, looking back, he became so obsessed with bringing in players to help us cope with life in the top-flight that he wanted to buy anyone and everyone. Because we didn’t have much time to put a proper plan of action in place, we became desperate.

“I should have put a stop to it, because it went against the brief I was given when I became manager that every decision would be taken only after we had thought fully about the long-term consequences.

“The way we went about our business in the summer meant we lost the spirit and togetherness that had held the squad in such good stead when things got so tough last season.”

Holloway also discussed the events that followed his final game in charge of Palace.

“When we lost 4-1 to Fulham last Monday, I knew that I had come to the end. I offered my resignation to the chairman immediately and, after we had both slept on it, Steve decided that a change was necessary.

“It’s unusual for a manager to have a role in taking such a decision, but at least I know that there were no machinations going on behind my back to bring someone else in. I’d like to thank everyone connected with Palace, especially the club’s magnificent support.

“If they can find a manager who is able to keep them in the Premier League I’ll be jumping for joy at the end of the season.”


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