Holloway to manage Crystal Palace

03 November 2012 01:18

Ian Holloway agreed to fill the void left by Dougie Freedman and become manager of Championship highflyers Crystal Palace on Saturday bringing to an end a three year spell with Championship rivals Blackpool.

The 49-year-old -- who guided Blackpool to their first ever appearance in the Premier League though they were relegated after just one season -- signed a four-and-a-half-year contract with Palace, who are fourth in the Championship.

"This is a fantastic opportunity. I got great energy when I met the club's owners and just can't wait to get going," he told Palace's website.

"It is sad to leave Blackpool as my time there was the best trip I have been on and leave very proud of what was achieved and I would like to wish them all the best.

"I just see this as too good an opportunity to turn down," added the colourful Holloway, who leaves Blackpool in 12th spot.

Blackpool chairman Karl Oyston was gracious about losing Holloway.

"I wish Ian all the best in his new role," Oyston told BBC Radio Lancashire.

"He has done a fantastic job for us during his time here and will be remembered as the most successful manager in the club's history.

"Things happen in football very quickly, as in this case, so I am not shocked by his decision. It suits him to be nearer his family and I am sure he will enjoy the new challenge he has set himself.

"There is no animosity, he goes with my best wishes having served our club so well and the success he brought to the club during his three years here."

His departure comes only six months after guiding Blackpool to the Championship play-off final against West Ham, where his side lost 2-1.

Holloway will now hope for similar success at Palace, who have not been in the top flight since a one-year stay in 2004-05, and lost their first three league matches of the current campaign.

Six wins out of seven then lifted them into fourth place in the Championship before Freedman's departure.

Source: AFP

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