This season has been something of a rollercoaster ride for Crystal Palace

It started with optimism under Patrick Vieira, before things started to go wrong. 

Vieira was supposed to be the manager that the Palace project was built around for the foreseeable future, but he ended up taking them on a 12-game winless run that started after his side beat Bournemouth in December, and ended in his last game in charge, a 1-0 loss to Brighton.

But since the appointment of Roy Hodgson, they have turned their season around, pulling clear of the relegation dog-fight and giving themselves the chance of finishing on a better points tally than they did last season.  

But despite the strong end to the campaign, the season hasn’t gone exactly to plan for Palace.

The temporary appointment of Hodgson has seemingly worked wonders for the Palace squad, and has got the best out of Eberechi Eze, who struggled for a starting place under Vieira, as well as Michael Olise, who has recorded four of his nine Premier League assists in Hodgson’s seven game spell.

But has this season been a success for Palace? No, but it also hasn’t been a failure.

With three games to go in the league, Palace are still without a permanent manager for the upcoming season.

Although the Eagles will be eager to resolve their managerial problems sooner rather than later, prior to heading into the summer transfer window, the current Palace squad have performed exceptionally, which has seen the club become one of the more attractive destinations for a manager.

The Eagles will want to get their next managerial appointment correct, as Vieira’s tenure almost set the club back from four years of progression, in which they hadn’t finished in a position lower than the season before, since 2019/20.


Upon Roy Hodgson’s return to Palace, he appears to have worked out the Eagles' strongest line-up, something that Vieira didn’t seem to know. 

Over Palace’s four wins since Hodgson has been in charge, the Palace gaffer has only made two changes to his starting 11.

One change was to bring Odsonne Edouard into the starting 11 when Wilfried Zaha was injured, and the other change was to start Sam Johnstone in goal when Vicente Guaita was injured.

Other than those isolated incidents, Hodgson has kept the same team, and more importantly, the same formation.

Under Vieira, Palace played a multitude of formations. The Eagles had played a 4-4-2, a 4-2-3-1 and even a five defender formation when the Eagles travelled away to Liverpool earlier on in the season.

But under Hodgson, the Eagles have played with the same shape in every game, the 4-3-3. And Palace have been successful with the formation as well.

The Eagles have accumulated 40% of their wins this season playing the same formation under Roy Hodgson.

The Expectations for Palace’s season crumbled once Vieira was sacked, and it was all about saving the club from relegation for Hodgson.

So while this may not have been the season that Palace fans would’ve hoped for, the end of the footballing year would’ve provided them with enough optimism of what this team are capable of going into next season.

With three games remaining, Palace can truly express themselves, and demonstrate their qualities for their potential new manager. Whoever he may be, he will have seen the abundance of talent that the current group has.

While the reappointment of Hodgson was frowned upon at the time, the current Palace manager has done a great job of raising the stock price of the club, so despite the rocky start to the season, it could be an exciting time to be a Palace fan.