Glasner debuts as Crystal Palace manager versus lowly Burnley

football23 February 2024 16:45| © Reuters
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Oliver Glasner © Getty Images

Oliver Glasner begins his task of trying to manage Crystal Palace to Premier League survival Saturday when the Eagles welcome a Burnley side that looks increasingly likely to be swiftly relegated before season's end.

Glasner takes over following the resignation of Roy Hodgson, who departed earlier this week after three lopsided losses in four matches.

With Glasner looking on from the stands, interim manager Paddy McCarthy guided Palace to a 1-1 draw at Everton Monday that increased the Eagles' margin of safety to five points. But he takes charge of a team that is still missing arguably its two most important players -- wingers Eberechi Eze and Michael Olise, both sidelined by hamstring injuries.

Eze and Olise were starters in each of the past two league wins for the Eagles (6-12-7, 25 points). But Glasner -- who most recently managed Eintracht Frankfurt and VfL Wolfsburg before that -- said his team doesn't need to be reliant on that duo to earn more points.

"We have everything we need in the squad to win Premier League games, especially at home," he said Friday. "I'm convinced because otherwise I wouldn't sit here. If I was afraid that we would get relegated, I wouldn't be here. I'm convinced of the quality of the Crystal Palace."

Burnley manager Vincent Kompany also insists he hasn't given up on avoiding relegation, despite sitting seven points beneath the line at the moment.

And while the results haven't necessarily been there to inform that perspective, perhaps the performances have.

While the Clarets' 5-0 home loss to Arsenal last weekend was a bad moment, there have been better ones.

Two matches ago Burnley (3-18-4, 13 points) were deservedly tied at halftime away to league-leading Liverpool and missed a pair of very good second-half chances to level again before ultimately losing 3-1. Before that, they rallied from two down to a 2-2 home draw against Fulham through winter addition David Fofana's late brace.

But too often the good performances have ended the same as the poor ones, with the Clarets failing to take any points. And even Kompany admits there's no one clear answer for changing that trend.

"That is the million-dollar question," Kompany said. "How many managers have talked about both boxes and what happened in both boxes? It is putting the ball in the back of the net and keeping it out of your own net. Part of it is confidence, part is experience."