Calling in on….Crystal Palace, the parish of Steve

I heard someone whistling Blaydon Races at London Kings Cross at 8.30am and I knew that either an impromptu Lindisfarne gig was taking place or that Newcastle United were in town. Later that day, in the early evening autumnal glow, the trains out of London Bridge fairly well resonated to the sound of the Tyne. “The Toon” (when did they stop being the Magpies?), wearing the not unfamiliar mantle of “crisis club”, were heading for Selhurst Park, home of Crystal Palace. Newcastle, whose only win was in the previous round of the competition, 1-0 at Gillingham, were bottom of the … Continue reading Calling in on….Crystal Palace, the parish of Steve

Holloway breaks out of the Palace

At the end of day, when you’re all done in, you can always rely on a Premier Inn. Isn’t that how the ad goes? Not for Crystal Palace. Manager Ian Holloway, at his exit interview of a press conference, was “all done in”, undoubtedly fearing “Premier Out” rather than in. But instead of retreating to somewhere local  like the Holiday Inn Croydon, Palace decided to stage their version of “Hari Kari” in the swish Soho Hotel. A possible sign that Chairman Steve Parish – as coiffeured as Holloway is glabrous – wants to create the impression Palace are trendily metropolitan rather … Continue reading Holloway breaks out of the Palace

Don’t build the Palace on sand

It wasn’t that long ago that Crystal Palace were on the brink of collapse,  but thankfully, the club turned things around and returned to the Premier in the summer. It’s good to see, although their stay in the Premier may be fleeting. In most people’s minds, Palace are a yo-yo club and in a crowded metropolis will always be eclipsed by the big four of Arsenal, Chelsea, Tottenham and West Ham. Cutting into the club’s so-called catchment area of 700,000 will always be hard when you can latch onto Stamford bridge quite easily from South London. Palace are talking about … Continue reading Don’t build the Palace on sand

The Eagles and the Seagulls. Why?

It started in the mid-1970s, the feud between the Eagles and the Seagulls. Crystal Palace and Brighton, two underachieving clubs who felt they needed to invent a rivalry that has become quite bitter at times. The meeting of the two clubs in the semi-final of the Championship play-offs evokes a time when they were both desperate for recognition. There is a theory that Palace fans manufactured the hostility because they didn’t fancy squaring up to their real local rivals – Millwall. Who could blame them, especially as the period in question, the golden age of the “Millwall brick”, was when … Continue reading The Eagles and the Seagulls. Why?