Following Palace’s hammering at the hands of bottom club Sunderland this weekend, somewhat prematurely speculation about a possible replacement for Sam Allardyce has already begun, with one former player being spoken about as a candidate to take over should ‘Big Sam’ fail to keep the Eagles in the Premier League, after telling Sky Sports (via Daily Star) he wouldn’t rule himself out if offered the job.
Tony Popovic played over one hundred games for the Eagles before going on to work as assistant manager at the club under Dougie Freedman.
Popovic told Sky Sports:
“I’d never rule anything out.
“It’s hard to do that in management. It’s not really a job with job security.
“It’s something I enjoy and you never know where it will take you.
“I want to be the best I can be as a manager – as I was as a player.
“If that took me on a path that included England, I’d certainly enjoy that.
“I got the chance to be an assistant at Crystal Palace and it really opened my eyes to the amount of work done off the pitch and everything that goes on behind the scenes.
“It’s not just training, it’s scouting, opposition analysis – so many things.
“I was very lucky to have a manager in Dougie Freedman who included me in discussions and meetings.
“He gave me a real good insight into management and now I’ve been a manager for four years.”
Palace are currently two points away from safety following Saturday’s horror show at home to Sunderland, who stunned the Eagles with a first half Blitzkreig that saw them race into a 4-0 lead by the interval, somewhat mercifully for Palace fans that’s how the game ended.
It wasn’t a pretty sight at Selhurst Park as some fans confronted the players at the final whistle with police making one arrest.
With Palace now level with Sunderland on 19 points at the bottom of the table- it’s a five goal better difference keeping the Eagles off the basement- Allardyce needs to start turning things around quickly or it could be Popovic taking charge next season.