In charge of English football’s worst-performing team of 2016, Alan Pardew was already under heavy scrutiny at Crystal Palace.
Some unwise comments about the club’s American owners might just have made his position untenable.
Pardew was fired as Palace’s manager yesterday, three days before Christmas and nearly two years into his job at Selhurst Park. The club may now turn to Sam Allardyce, who was dismissed by England in September.
With nearly half the league season gone, Palace are in 17th place after four wins from 17 games. The club has the fewest points per game (0.72) in 2016 than any team in England’s top four divisions.
“Personally, I have a lot of good feelings for this football club and am sad that my time there has ended,” said Pardew, who played for Palace from 1987-91. “I feel that I have a special bond with the club and hope that hasn’t been affected.”
In a short statement, Palace said the club had asked Pardew to step down from his position and thanked him for his services.
Since December 2015, the club’s board has contained American businessmen David Blitzer and Josh Harris, who were the target of remarks from Pardew after Palace’s 3-0 win over Southampton that gave the under-pressure manager some breathing space.
“We have a lot of serious investors at the club who perhaps don’t know a lot about football,” Pardew said, before praising Palace chairman Steve Parish for defending him in troubled times.
Less than three weeks later, the 55-year-old Englishman is out.
Allardyce is now expected to hold talks with Palace regarding the vacancy.