Alan Pardew pulled no punches over the struggles he and his players have endured recently when talking to the press on Thursday, admitting that he went through his worst week as the club’s manager recently.
In a surprisingly harsh critique of the football club and its place within the English game, the Eagles’ gaffer compared his current employers’ stature unfavourably with Southampton; a move that could easily rub a number of our supporters up the wrong way if it is taken in the wrong context.
Admittedly, he and the squad have been forced to battle through an extremely tough run of league fixtures in 2016, but it feels a little strange to see the manager publicly putting the club down in a press conference ahead of a home game against the league leaders with three massive points at stake.
Perhaps it’s his way of forcing the players to battle through the next few matches rather than coasting, but on the face of things, it’s difficult to know how to react to comments which, were they made by someone outside the football club, would rightly draw a level of vocal criticism from our fanbase if taken at face value.
There is of course an element of realism to the sentiments expressed by Pardew in the article above; a fact any sane Palace fan would readily concede, but his words are hardly a rallying call to arms for a group of fans who have had nothing to shout about in terms of Premier League form since mid-December.
Hopefully, his words act as a figurative kick up the collective backsides of our squad in the build-up to a game which could see us all but mathematically secure our Premier League safety for another year this Saturday.
Casting aside our pending FA Cup semi-final appearance, we could do with a reason or two to be cheerful as we hurtle towards April with an eye on the drop zone. A fact he will be painfully aware of.