Thousands of comments have been made about Palace’s dismal performance against Sunderland on Saturday afternoon but perhaps none have been more pertinent than those which came from Sam Allardyce himself in the moments immediately after the game.
All too often in the modern game, managers are happy to dodge difficult questions by employing technical jargon rather than driving to the heart of the issue at hand, that is not something you can accuse Allardyce of in the interview attached above. He may have only been with the club a matter of weeks but his honest assessment of what was a dismal display against the Black Cats has won him plenty of plaudits amongst the Palace faithful.
There have been one or two supporters who have questioned why Allardyce himself hasn’t come in for as much stick as the players after our 4-0 hammering but in truth, the capitulation of the team just before half-time had far less to do with the man in the dugout than those on the field in front of him. In truth, Hennessey’s goalkeeping blunder which gifted the Mackems an early lead left me feeling sorry for the former England gaffer rather than angry.
You need only look at the spirited display we put in against Bournemouth a matter of days before to see what the team are capable of under Allardyce’s guidance, making Saturday’s limp surrender to a relegation all the more baffling for fans and the man himself. It is therefore to his credit that he came out and backed the dissenting voices of those in the stands so vehmentaly rather than attempting to protect the players from any further backlash.
There are a number of differing schools of thought on the most effective managerial techniques when faced with such a scenario but in this particular instance, Sam clearly felt it necessary to publicly dig out the men who had failed so miserably to execute their roles in what was a stereotypical “six-pointer.”
The day itself may not have made for pleasant viewing for anyone of a red and blue persuasion but Allardyce’s post-match interview certainly softened the blow for me on a personal level. It’s nice to feel as though the man calling the shots on the training ground from day to day empathises with our frustrations after such a heartbreaking display on our own turf.