New lease of life for troubled Palace
PUBLISHED: 15:39 25 August 2010 | UPDATED: 15:39 25 August 2010
Delighted fans and celebrities are revelling in the flipped fortunes of a football club which emerged from administration and signed an international ace, writes Kate Nelson.
Spirits will be high at this Saturday’s match against Scunthorpe with news that Crystal Palace which was stuck in a financial quagmire rose from the depths and secured former Ajax and Barcelona star Edgar Davids on Friday.
Relieved supporters said there had been some ‘buttock-clenching moments’ as the club teetered on the edge of extinction when no buyer for the cash-strapped team could be found.
The acceptance by The Football League of Crystal Palace’s new owners, led by Steve Parish, Martin Long and Steve Browett, marked the end of the administration process last Thursday, enabling it to move forward into the new season.
The consortium of businessmen, called CPFC 2010 Ltd, bought the club in June and fans now believe there lies a ‘very exciting’ future for The Eagles.
Independence Day and Austin Powers 3 actor and Palace fan Jim Piddock, 54, said: “I’m overjoyed not only that we’re out of administration, but also by the approach CPFC2010 has taken. Not since the days of Arthur Wait have I felt that the club is in such sound hands.
“There were some buttock-clenching moments where the club was close to the precipice. But they handled things superbly and played their cards perfectly. I’m very excited about the future of the club.”
Crystal Palace dropped from ninth to 21st in the Championship when they were deducted 10 points for going into administration in January this year.
Securing Davids is the latest blessing in the team’s remarkable turnaround, although it is not known when he will make his debut.
The dreadlocked newbie, who is under a pay-as-you-play deal, said: “I hope I can be a positive influence here.
“I’ve trained with Ajax for the last couple of weeks, it’s gone very well. It’s an exciting time for the football club- it’s an exciting time for me. I just want to enjoy football.”
Fan Neil Witheroe, 34, from website Palace Echo said: “Coming out of administration is immense. Now we need to get more people through the gates- these men have put their money where their mouth is and now it’s time for fans to do the same, not least so they can see our new signing.”
Manager George Burley said: “It’s great to be out of administration, it’s great to have Edgar here. It’s a smashing club, the fans have been great.”