As a source of Crystal Palace news, one of the biggest advantages associated with Frank de Boer’s arrival as manager is the interest in the Dutchman from across Europe. The piece below is an astoundingly detailed analysis of his time as Ajax boss.
Whilst Palace fans have been conditioned to see our new boss’ spell with Ajax as a total success and his months with Inter Milan as an unmitigated disaster, the reality is actually far more nuanced. Of course, Frank’s four consecutive Eredivisie titles give the impression of a completely stress-free period but there was actually a huge amount of in-fighting from the boardroom down; a tale told with real care and attention by the writer, Priya Ramesh.
There is often an urge when writing an article analysing a manager to focus solely on the positive aspects of their approach but as I’m sure you’ll agree, the above piece benefits massively from looking at de Boer with a critical eye, weighing off the pros and cons of his style in a neutral manner rather than veering off into the realms of hero-worship.
Although I and plenty of other Palace fans are hugely excited about what de Boer will bring to the table in SE25, the sensible ones amongst us are well aware that it’s an appointment with an obvious sense of risk attached to it. Having never played or coached in the Premier League, Frank will have to be tactically adaptable if he wants to be a success with us and thankfully, the aforementioned article goes a long way to exposing the tactical blind spots de Boer suffered with in Holland, giving us all a flavour of the challenges he’ll be forced to adapt to whilst in England.
If you’re happy to expose yourself to the bigger picture rather than hoping that we’ll have cruised to a Premier League title win by early April, I really recommend setting aside a few minutes to read the piece at the top of the page. It’s one of the most impressive things I’ve read online in years.