Parish’s “Relegation Plans” Caused A Huge Storm In A Tiny Teacup

0 Posted by - March 1, 2018 - News

Yesterday, Crystal Palace chairman attended a Sports Industry Breakfast Club meeting, where he was quizzed on the club’s current state. In what was a wide-ranging chat, one quote in particular caught the attention of the press and caused quite a commotion.

Predictably, Parish was asked about the planned redevelopment of Selhurst Park, with particular interest placed upon what the club would look to do in the event of relegation, prompting Steve to give a detailed answer which was subsequently boiled down to an alarming headline for the sake of shock, awe and the holy grail of modern media, web traffic.

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What I actually said today… Asked 'just how much of a risk is investing in a stadium when the club is not guaranteed Premier League safety', Steve Parish said: "The football club has been going since 1905, and will still be going in [the year] 3005. Relegations and promotions are temporary things. What I've got to make sure is that in any eventuality, we can fulfil what we need to do to that are the long term goals of the club. So somehow, under every set of circumstances, I've got to try to make it happen. That's the job. People say to me 'is it (the stadium redevelopment) going to happen if we get relegated?' Well, there will be different challenges to making it happen, and unfortunately in football – you have this unique thing (relegation) – this destroyer of value – but you have to somehow learn to manage it. It exists. Three teams are going to get relegated each year. We're in a difficult situation this year – make no mistake. One of the big challenges of being involved in sport is on a Monday morning when you have lost in the last few minutes [v Spurs], we as a club have to find a way of keeping going. We have to make a plan. People say to me 'What I am doing right now?' I'm planning for the Championship – people say 'oh don’t worry / you won't go down'… given there's very little I can affect right now. .. I'll go to training tomorrow, I'll chat with the manager – if there's anything – anything – I can do to help – talk to the medical dept, I'll do it. Have a difficult conversation with someone, I'll do it. Whatever the manager needs doing, I'll do it. But really at the moment – it's down to the players and those guys. They know it and I know it. What MIGHT happen is that we end up in the Championship. So I can't start thinking about it when it happens. Goes on … So we have to plan for those eventualities. And of course within that we are looking at the stadium, the Academy, other plans – what plans can we still fulfil, and what can't we fulfil – that's the job of running a football club.

A post shared by Steve Parish (@chair4palace) on

Before going any further, I have to admit that I too was slightly sucked in by the hysteria. Having been away from social media between the hours of 11am and 3pm, I returned to discover talk of the club openly planning for life in the Championship and took the bait to some extent, only realising later that Parish’s words had been taken drastically out of context in a bid to encourage a discussion over the foolishness of his public admission.

Well known outrage-whore Adrian Durham, flanked by former Palace chairman Simon Jordan used the platform of TalkSPORT to lambast Parish for his perceived idiocy, prompting Steve himself to hit back via Twitter, having felt that his overall sentiments were being twisted for the purpose of a lively phone-in debate. In truth, the whole furore acted as the perfect example of a figurative storm in a teacup, once the full quote was released by Parish on Instagram in the hours that followed.

Describing both promotions and relegations as transient events in the life of any football club, Parish admitted that, whilst the prospect of dropping down a division is a possibility, the plans regarding the stadium must not be impacted by that sense of fear. I’m sure you’ll agree, once you’ve read the above quote in full, that his views do in fact make sense in the circumstances, but a measured discussion over the gradual improvements in off-field infrastructure at Crystal Palace FC doesn’t make for attention grabbing radio.

In an ideal world, Roy and his players will make it through the current rough patch before putting enough points on the board to secure our place in the division for another year, placing any immediate worries of a drop into the second tier on the back-burner.

It won’t be an easy task but we’ve been in plenty of similar binds over the years. My only hope is that we can get through this one and put measures in place to ensure we’re not faced with the same ever-repeating story for years to come.

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  • t.carter March 1, 2018 - 9:30 am Reply

    yes very good.but let,s not forget the transfer window.palace had a great chance to inprove the squad and still well clear of relegation zone.instead what a u really belive this squad will save our not convinced.parish has NEVERbeen decisive enough,no clear strategy.if we go down and this is now 50-50.i expect parish to go and take freedman with him.yes,we,d like a nice stadium,but if u asked most supporter,s,the promise of premiership football would mean more.

  • Graham March 1, 2018 - 10:55 am Reply

    Any sensible club below the top 6 should always have contingency plans in place for relegation – if you look at some of the teams that have gone down in the last few years you realise that almost no-one is immune to the possibility. I would have been more concerned if Parish had said he wasn’t planning for relegation, particularly considering our start to the season. My philosophy in life is “Prepare for the worst but hope for the best”, that way if the worst (or something approaching it) does happen it shouldn’t break you

  • Spiceboy March 1, 2018 - 11:21 am Reply

    Hoppo u were right about sakho he basically should be back he is just being a tart. Kelly defo back for Man U & tommo injury not too bad at all maybe all 3 ready to go wknd. We can but hope.

  • t.carter March 1, 2018 - 11:56 am Reply

    i think u miss my point graham.because of parish and freedmans cock up,s AGAINin the transfer window,we are in this situation.parish,s record on transfer deals,IS APPPALING.he is totally to blame.and if we go down,he should be sacked.just think of the de-boer fiasco.

  • Eric The Ninja March 1, 2018 - 5:08 pm Reply

    Gonna start a Kickstarter to buy Simon Jordan one million gob-stoppers, who’s in?

  • Lawro March 2, 2018 - 10:31 am Reply

    I think he’s right to have considered relegation. In the last 5 seasons 12 different teams have been relegated (Hull, Norwich and QPR have been relegated twice). Of those teams only 5 (Burnley, Newcastle, Hull, Norwich and QPR) have been promoted back again and only 2 are in the Prem this season (and Newcastle haven’t had the chance to get relegated yet and could well do this year). Of the 12 relegated teams one is in League One (Wigan) and one could well be there next season (Sunderland). Not to at least consider relegation would be negligent by Parish. If he doesn’t and we do go down then there’s no guarantee we’d survive in the Championship let alone come back up again. The team would be devastated by players leaving. Yes he should have done more in January and the summer, and yes De Boer was an incredibly poor choice, but he cannot change that now, he needs to look at what he can do, and if that’s relegation and what we do then, then he needs to do that too. I’m sure they’ve also considered us staying up too.

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