On this day in 2012, Ian Holloway made a significant move from Blackpool to take on the role of Crystal Palace’s new manager. Holloway, who had led Blackpool to promotion to the Premier League in 2010, signed a four-and-a-half-year contract to fill the managerial vacancy at Selhurst Park, created when Dougie Freedman departed for Bolton in October of that year.
The unveiling took place at half-time during Crystal Palace’s Championship game against Blackburn, which ended in a 2-0 victory, propelling the Eagles to third place in the table. Holloway expressed his delight during his introduction to the Palace crowd, saying, “How lucky are we to see a team like this? It’s fantastic. I think I have got goosebumps on the back of my neck to get an opportunity like this.”
The season proved successful as Palace finished fifth in the Championship, ultimately securing promotion to the Premier League through the play-offs. However, Holloway’s contract was mutually terminated after a challenging start to their top-flight return, marked by seven defeats in the first eight games.
Holloway, acknowledging the need for an infusion of energy, stated, “This club needs an impetus of energy, but I just feel tired, to be honest. I’m worn out. I want to give them the chance to stay in this division.” The managerial transition marked a significant chapter in Crystal Palace’s recent history.