Frank De Boer
The Premier League is ruthless and relentless. The slightest sign of weakness is pounced upon. Whether Frank de Boer’s tactical approach was born out of naivety or pig-headedness, there are reasons why his sacking by Crystal Palace doesn’t come as a great surprise.
De Boer’s departure makes his reign the shortest in Premier League history in terms of games played and the club have moved quickly to secure the services of Hodgson on a two-year deal.
Here are five reasons why it happened …
- The dedication to a 3-4-3 formation was shown up by performances and results
De Boer made it clear that he saw Palace playing in a 3-4-3 formation. He played with it throughout preseason, and then in the club’s first three competitive matches. Despite the work before the season kicked off, Palace barely looked comfortable.
- It wasn’t just a matter of tactics
The most alarming elements of Palace’s run of defeats weren’t just the results but the lack of urgency, or intent, in the squad during de Boer’s reign.
The game that seemed to turn the chairman’s opinion on the manager was the Swansea defeat.
- If you’re trying to evolve, fitting square pegs in round holes doesn’t work
Palace’s tactical listlessness was further worsened by de Boer’s attempt to adapt specialist players into roles that didn’t suit them.
- When a manager falls out with an owner, there’s only going to be one winner
Whatever the cause of the fallout between the manager and the chairman, when a relationship between two key stakeholders at a football club breaks down with no sign of it being repaired, something will inevitably change.
- The new manager must work with his team’s strengths
Whoever comes in to replace de Boer, he will have to make use of a squad that lacks balance but is clearly capable of collecting better results than it has done already.