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Championship 2012/13 Preview: Crystal Palace


Club: Crystal Palace

Last Season Position: 17th

Recent History:

With no ‘real’ history, our friends from Croydon finally looked like they got their club back when fan Steve Parish headed a consortium to ‘save’ the club in the post-orange era. After flirting with the Premier League (that’s all they ever do) with Simon Jordan and Iain Dowie at the helm, Palace have finally settled back into the mid-to-lower table mediocrity of the Championship where they seem most comfortable.

A lucky league cup run last year saw Palace defeat Manchester United Young’uns at Old Trafford before crashing out in comedic fashion against Cardiff City on penalties.

Manager Profile:

Much like their non-rivals from SE7, Crystal Palace appointed a fan favourite as their manager in the form of Dougie Freedman at pretty much the same time as Chris Powell in January 2011. The former striker has little experience in the hot seat but guided the Eagles to a relatively safe position last season when many were tipping them for the drop.

Summer Transfer Activity:

In: Nigel Wilbraham (Norwich/Free); Nigel Ward (Portsmouth/£400k); Nigel Martin (Southampton/ Loan); Nigel Ramage (QPR/Free)

Out: Nigel Caprice (Blackpool/Free); Nigel Gardner (Sheff W/ Free); Nigel Scannell (Huddersfield/ Undisc); Nigel Ambrose (Birmingham/ Undisc); Nigel Clyne (Southampton/Trib)

Expected Line-Up:

Nigel Speroni, Nigel Ward, Nigel Martin, Nigel McCarthy, Nigel Moxey; Nigel Jedinak, Nigel Dikgachoi, Nigel Williams, Nigel Zaha; Nigel Murray, Nigel Easter

Expected Tactics/Formation:

Dougie Freeman’s philosophy has been built around having a tight defence - which is handy considering they don’t have a single goal threat in the team. The Croydon residents had the fifth best defence in the league last season but the fourth worst attack – must be a joy to watch. The loss of key players in the close season does not suggest that the tactics will change in the 2012/13 season, with ‘nicking’ results the order of the day.

What the fans are saying:

“You’re not our rivals” was the hilariously predictable response from a number of Cheeserolls but a semi-sane fan I came across expects a struggle. The loss of Clyne and enigmatic top-scorer Darren Ambrose suggests a season of struggle, frustrations of days gone past are coming back to haunt Palace. They had a chance to sign Jordan Rhodes and Ricky Lambert over the past couple of years for no more than £1m each and now they are rueing the missed opportunity.

Main Forum: Nigel Forum

Odds: Promotion 20/1, Relegation 3/1


If Charlton finish above Palace then I think we’ll be safe. With a lack of signings and the loss of key personnel a struggle seems imminent. That being said, they seem to have a knack of squirming their way out of difficult situations. Some astute loan signings will see Palace safe. Just. 21st position and a final day reprieve.

Compiled by: @WSS

How do you see the Stripey's doing this season ? Seen as the 2nd least likely club to be promoted, will Palace fare better than some expect ?


  • Will just survive, but if Zaha leaves this month, they will follow Barnsley.
  • Down you go you bastards!

    Good preview.
  • The photo did make me laugh. Relegation and at 3/1 that will return a nice bit of money as well. Everyones a winner
  • If they keep Zaha, who is a quality player they will be fine, but as said above if he leaves I can see them struggling.
  • Sis-ter Aaacctt, Sis-ter Aaaact


  • Heart says relegation head says they might just avoid it.
  • Hate em'.
  • My usually over overoptimistic Palarse mate is actually saying their going down so relegation it is for them in my book.
  • Jonny Williams is a cracking player, and Zaha improved loads last season. But I think they could struggle this season. Really depends on who they can get in between now and the end of the transfer window though.
  • They are the Glaziers, not the Eagles. As has been said before, You can't change your own nickname as my old mate Sh*tface will confirm.

    I predict they will finish seven places below us and also below Millwall
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  • Looks bad for them, they didn't look overly good last season and the loss of key players suggests they may struggle.
  • I've got a really good mate who is a Palace fan, so don't have the same hatred as some of you, but I think they'll struggle this year. Too many experienced players sold and not replaced. They do have a good youth team though so you never know ;-)
  • Somewhere near the bottom hopefully 24th :)
  • Sold a lot of decent players, and not replaced them with quality. I think they'll struggle big time, but got a sneaky feeling they'll scrape it again unfortunately. 21st for me.
  • hopefully second bottom above our real rivals Millwall
  • nolly said:

    hopefully second bottom above our real rivals Millwall

    That will do me too now you mentioned it :)
  • God I see this thread coming back to haunt us.
  • Valley11 said:

    God I see this thread coming back to haunt us.

    Pffft, I don't.

    Us 12th-18th, Palace in a relegation scrap.
  • Good article AFKA, but isn't their manager Nigel Freedman?
  • WSS wrote it, not me
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  • If Moses goes to the Bridge they may cop a good sell on fee .
  • Administration and relegation would suit me, just my own irrational personal view so no need to analyse or debate.....
  • WSS wrote it, not me


  • Think u got the promotion odds wrong. its about 80-1
  • They always look like they will struggle and always do ok, I don't see why this will change. If we finish above them and scum we will have had a good season. Nigel's will be on they always have just enough.
  • Palace supporting colleague expects nothing better than last year but says gaps will be filled by a few good youngsters coming through which given their recent record sounds about right to me.
  • edited August 2012
    Honestly i think they will be safe, as others have mentioned every year they look quite weak and every year they stay up comfortably.
  • I think this is the season they finally go down.
  • Honestly i think they will be safe, as others have mentioned every year they look quite weak and every year they stay up comfortably.

    Didn't they only survive on the last day a couple of seasons ago? I seem to remember it was a do-or-die match against our mates from Sheffield. Leon Clarke might even have scored(!)
  • and another against stockport wasnt it on the last day of the season?
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