What a difference 24 hours makes. Yesterday morning, Crystal Palace fans everywhere scanned the internet for the official announcement that Malky Mackay was the club’s new manager; now, those plans lay in tatters, and rightly so.
When news of the club’s U-turn over their decision to appoint Mackay first broke, the reaction was one of predictable dismay. With time in short supply, the board had seemingly pulled the plug on a deal that looked all but done, leaving the fans in the dark as to our next move and maddened by a perceived lack of professionalism. Little were we all to know the extent of the reasons behind Palace’s sudden change of heart.
Following on from stories of a breakdown in communication between Mackay and the owners, came rumours of minor disagreements over the terms of the Scot’s potential contract, but later that evening, the real reasons were to emerge, thanks to this extensive article in the Daily Mail.
The piece documents a catalogue of wrongdoing dating back months, attached to both Malky Mackay and Iain Moody. A series of text messages and emails containing homophobic, racial and sexual slurs appear, alongside reports of “agents fees” that had mysteriously been included in deals done by Cardiff during the time that the pair held roles at the club.
With Palace thought to have been on the verge of appointing Mackay, the reason for their sudden about turn now seems blindingly obvious with the inevitable investigation into the duo’s prior conduct sure to have impacted heavily on the club, had we given Mackay the job officially.
There are now rumours circulating that as well as withdrawing our offer to Mackay completely, we will also relieve Moody of his duties, as the board look to distance themselves from the affair altogether.
Although there was a sense of widespread anger and frustration spreading across our fan base on Wednesday afternoon, it must be said that the club have undoubtedly made the right decision in pulling the plug on both men before things potentially get ridiculously out of hand.
Quite where it will all end is anyone’s guess, but given the fluid nature of the story, it seems fairly obvious to say that we’re unlikely to have heard the last of Mackay, Moody, Vincent Tan or Cardiff City in relation to our football club.
It may not have felt like it yesterday afternoon, but we appear to have dodged an entire artillery cupboard of bullets by changing our minds at the final moment. The alternative is an almost unbearable thought.