Roy Hodgson is in talks to return as Crystal Palace manager following the sacking of Patrick Vieira.
Hodgson, 75, left Palace in the summer of 2021 after four years in charge and is now the clear front-runner to take over from Vieira, who was dismissed on Friday morning after 18 months in the job.
Palace have spoken to a number of candidates, including Adi Hutter, who was most recently head coach at German side Borussia Monchengladbach.
But Hodgson is the clear frontrunner to take over from Vieira.
Palace have already confirmed that U21s head coach Paddy McCarthy will take charge of the Eagles’ next game at Arsenal on Sunday, supported by assistant Darren Powell and goalkeeping coach Dean Kiely.
Palace chairman Steve Parish exclusively told Sky Sports News that he will not rush appointing Vieira’s successor.
Parish said: “Football is a strange game as things can very quickly start not going right. When you feel you can’t get out of a rut, unfortunately then you’ve got to change something.
“Maybe things might have changed [for the better] anyway, but I couldn’t be sure of it so I’ve made the call I have and we move forward from here.
“Everybody loved Patrick, he never lost the players at all. They were still running for him but things weren’t happening. We’re just hoping now that there is some fresh impetus, a few different ideas.
“Maybe we can surprise the opposition by doing something different as we’ve got good players and have got a good squad. They followed Patrick and now they will follow Paddy [McCarthy] and Darren [Powell] to do the best for the football club.
“The mood is never bad and everyone is positive and believe we can win matches. Everyone is still positive for the game against Arsenal on Sunday. We’re not looking past Sunday. We’re not interviewing managers while we have the current set-up as that would be disrespectful.
“We want to give Paddy and Darren a clear run at it on Sunday. We’ve got our own list and that kind of thing but our focus is on facing Arsenal.”
‘Sacking Vieira a mistake – Zaha will be disappointed’
Former Crystal Palace striker Clinton Morrison speaking to Sky Sports News:
“For me, it’s not the right call – I don’t think he should have been sacked. I know the run they have been on is terrible – without a win since the New Year. But I speak to a lot of people at Palace, around the place there has been a lot of togetherness and that’s down to Patrick.
“I know it’s a results-based industry but the run of games they have had is ridiculous. After Arsenal, the next five or six games are all winnable. I would have stuck with him. I don’t know which other manager can come in and turn it around.
“It is a tough job and I don’t know who is out there. Someone like a Jesse Marsch? What Palace are used to under Patrick Vieira might be different to what a new manager comes in and implements.
“So it will take time and Palace don’t have time. They’re in a relegation battle, you need confidence and you need someone who is going to come in and lift the team. There will be someone, as you don’t make rash decisions like sacking Vieira without having someone lined up.
“I do believe the investment wasn’t good enough in January, Vieira needed help in strengthening other areas.
“The biggest problem with Palace is scoring goals. They are too reliant on Wilfried Zaha and he’s been injured for a bit recently. Other players need to step up, there are two players in Ebere Eze and Michael Olise who I think will go to the very top. I think Palace will stay up as they have talented players in the team.
“There are a lot of players who like Vieira, the harmony there is together. Zaha and Vieira had a brilliant relationship. I can’t speak for him but he might be disappointed.”
Crystal Palace’s next fixtures
When Palace regroup after the March international break, their next six fixtures are against teams below them in the table.
The last time the Eagles played a team below them in the league was against Bournemouth on New Year’s Eve in 2022, which was Vieira’s last win in charge.
March 19 – Arsenal (a)
April 1 – Leicester (h)
April 8 – Leeds (a)
April 15 – Southampton (a)
April 22 – Everton (h)
April 25 – Wolves (a)
April 29 – West Ham (h)