Crystal Palace Reaction

Crystal Palace 2-0 Fulham

Today’s highlight for me was Roy applauding us, as always, when we sing his name followed by our choiring of ‘have you ever beat Juventus, have you f*ck’. What a manager Roy was for us. He made us disciplined, frustrating to play against and deadly when we attacked – exactly what Palace were today.

When Ranieri signed for us the echoes of ‘we’ll be like a Hodgson counter attacking side again’ were ringing and hopeful. If we were to lose our beautiful free flowing and Slavish possession attacks to what Roy did, that would have been the next best thing for me and for a club of our size in a league this formidable. Ranieri is not Roy. Ranieri has finally proved to many of us we have made another false decision by this football club.

But the first half of this match we looked good. A lot of people will say 5 at the back is negative, but to play the exact same way against the second half of Brighton would have fallen into Palace’s hands massively. Claudio tried to have the best of both worlds and kept Cairney, but in a position that he looks completely blunt in – Vietto needed to be there.

Mitro should have scored early in the game thanks to another decent Bryan cross but another failed chance. An individual error once again cost us this game. Cyrus Christie you’re not a bad bloke, but what the hell are you doing? That penalty changed everything for us and from then on we were utterly terrible. Our heads are well and truly down now. We deserved nothing, a complete Roy show for the second time this season. Ranieri had a chance to change our fortune and instead of bringing on Sessegnon, who we all sang for, he brought on Floyd Ayite in the 88nd minute, seconds after Palace killed it with the second goal. A goal that symbolised a club with a decent acquisition in Michy Batshuayi. A club that knew what was missing from the jigsaw of their squad, whereas Fulham bought another defensive midfielder, and two wingers. It’s a Shambles. Fosu Mensah came on for Christie and I wouldn’t be at all surprised if Cyrus pretended to be injured after his performance and the abuse he got from us. Mensah’s unwanted return was uninspiring, he and in fact the whole team before their second goal showed zero intelligence or determination to move the ball forward, It was awful to watch and it’s going to get worse.

Claudio Ranieri looks like he’s lost any means of inspiring these players now, he has also alienated Ryan Sessegnon. We now need a manager who’s ready for our Championship return. Slav‘s return isn’t happening..ever. So I have a Baldrick cunning plan. We need a manager who knows the championship but challenges it every season with a budget far less than ours, a manager who knows how to attack, believes in youth and gets big results in the Championship but also in cup games against the likes of Manchester Utd. Lee Johnson is our man. He is exactly what we need to survive next season whilst having a chance of making the playoffs again. He’s been knocking at the door for Top 6 with Bristol for 2 seasons now. He’s a young and modern style of manager who will hold his arm around players and get the best of out of Matt O’Riley and Steven Sessegnon. To top it all off, rumour has it he’s a Fulham fan, so he’ll have plenty of beans to do the job right. Lee Johnson with Khan cash is my vote, it won’t be popular with everyone but it’s time to look in the mirror and be realistic about our club. We won’t be in the Premier League for 13 years ever again, we will be a back and forth Norwich and Burnley yo-yo and that’s OK.

After the match, Dannyboi rang me for a moan and stated his ongoing belief Ranieri is worse than Magath as a relegation saving Premier League manager and for the first time today I’m starting to agree with him. Magath was awful, make no mistake but in spite of his Cheddar, he gave us a chance of survival with 2 games to go which is something Ranieri won’t even come close to the way things are headed. Ranieri was the Chris Jericho managerial appointment by the Khans, the opposite of what was installed in our players by Slav, but glamorous because he won the league with Leicester. We needed the evolution of Slav. We needed an apple pie made from apples, not try and turn the apples into f*cking aubergines.

Well done to Rico and Le Marchand , best players on the pitch for me today. And a huge shout out to the fans who walked from Craven Cottage to Selhurst Park raising awareness for Mental Illnes, probably the only inspiring thing I saw this weekend to do with Fulham.

This season has felt like a battle with insomnia for our club, we just want to hibernate and wake up to a clean slate and start again from such toxicity on and off the pitch. As I said before, it’s going to get worse. But take comfort in one thing and just remember: it was all completely avoidable. Sleep well.

We are down. If we can’t use that amazing Brighton performance against a Palace side without Zaha, with zero shots on target, then the romantic notion of Brighton being our Man City game during the great escape is blown to smithereens.