Sam Allardyce has stunned Crystal Palace by quitting as manager. A statement is expected later on Tuesday confirming that the 62-year-old is leaving the Premier League club just five months after taking over and having saved them from relegation.
It is understood, in fact, that Allardyce is not intending to continue in management having told friends that he wants to leave ‘on a high’. He will not formally retire but is not expected to look for another management job.
The decision was taken after a meeting with Palace chairman Steve Parish on Tuesday although sources insist there has been no disagreement or bust-up between the pair prompting Allardyce’s departure.
It had been thought that Allardyce wanted assurances from Parish over the transfer funds available at Palace this summer to make sure they are not in trouble again next season. However, that was being denied on Tuesday night with sources insisting he simply wanted to step down. Allardyce is aware that he is into his 60s and does not want to continue as a manager forever.
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Allardyce succeeded Alan Pardew and took his first game as Palace manager on Boxing Day away to Watford. His decision to go comes just days after he celebrated keeping Palace in the top-flight with their home win over Hull and has left the club reeling.
Only last weekend Allardyce was talking about how the success he has enjoyed at Palace had helped him get over the disappointment of losing the England job after just one match and only 67 days in charge following an investigation by The Daily Telegraph.
Palace gave him his chance back into management with Allardyce also awarded a £2million bonus for avoiding relegation. He signed a contract that took him up to 2019 but has said he wants to go now.
The club also spent heavily in the January window to improve the squad with the signings of Patrick Van Aanholt, Jeffrey Schlupp and Luka Milivojevic the the loan signing of Mamadou Sakho from Liverpool.
Palace’s hierarchy were locked in meetings on Tuesday deciding their next step as they again started to look for another manager.