What promised to be a difficult opening day afternoon for Crystal Palace was last night made a whole lot tougher following Tony Pulis’ resignation from his role as manager less than 48 hours prior to their trip to Arsenal.
The news will be regarded as something of a catastrophe for both Eagles fans and the masses to have backed West Ham’s Sam Allardyce to the first Premier League manager to leave this season.
But with bwin opening the book on who’ll succeed the baseball cap-sporting Welshman in the Palace dugout, punters have been handed an immediate opportunity to reimburse some of those squandered funds.
Former Cardiff boss Malky Mackay is the early pacesetter, available to back as short as even money to take the reins at Selhurst Park.
His links to Palace Sporting Director Iain Moody is no doubt the driving force behind the early surge of money on the Scot, but if his perceived inertia in the transfer market is accountable for Pulis’ departure, appointing one of his drinking buddies days later may seem a bit sketchy.
To avoid any ‘jobs for the boys’ suspicions, the Croydon club may turn their attentions elsewhere, which adds value to these three candidates:
Neil Lennon @ 8/1
Fair enough, a manager who cut his coaching badges off the back of a cereal box could dominate the Scottish Premiership if placed in charge of Celtic, but he’s masterminded victories over sides of Barcelona’s stature in his time, as well as qualifying for the last-16 of the Champions League, facts that suggest he’s a half decent helmsman.
Tim Sherwood @ 14/1
Tiger Tim knocked back West Brom earlier in the summer, stating the job ‘wasn’t right’ for him, but perhaps he’ll have a better feel for Palace.
After recording the best win percentage of any Tottenham manager in the Premier League era, his candidacy must be legitimate.
Roberto Di Matteo @ 25/1
The Champions League and FA Cup-winning gaffer would seemingly be overlooked for the job of managing his local pub team despite guiding a distinctly average Chelsea team to the pinnacle of club football.
Surely keeping the Eagles aloft in the top flight is a task he’s capable of handling.