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Last Updated: Monday, 22 May 2006, 21:32 GMT 22:32 UK
Palace change guard

By Saj Chowdhury

Simon Jordan and Iain Dowie
Jordan appointed Dowie in December 2003
The body language of Crystal Palace chairman Simon Jordan and his former manager Iain Dowie told its own story as they announced their working relationship had come to an end.

During a 35-minute news conference Dowie only once made eye contact with Jordan.

Seated next to each other, Dowie angled himself away from the direction of Jordan's glare.

Both were keen to stress this was not an acrimonious split, despite rumours of a bust-up after the recent play-offs.

You should do some clothes shopping, get a bit of decent clobber

Simon Jordan's advice to Iain Dowie

"I'll miss Iain, the banter and the sparks that flew," said Jordan. "I'll miss his facetious comments.

"The players and a large section of the fans will miss him. He took hold of the club and was the only manager out of the ones I've employed to have done that."

Dowie was slightly taken aback by Jordan's compliment.

"For that to come from Simon Jordan is very unusual," he said.

Jordan and Dowie were football's 'odd couple'.

Tracksuit-wearing Dowie did most of his talking on the touchline, leaving the more outspoken and controversial views to be aired by his debonair perma-tanned boss, notably in his Observer column.

Dowie was appointed by Jordan in December 2003 on an 18-month contract after he resigned as boss of Oldham.

He was Jordan's seventh managerial appointment during his four-year tenure as chairman.

It proved to be a masterstroke as Dowie took the club into the Premiership at the first time of asking, despite Palace being 19th in the table when he took over.

Jordan provided his employee with over 2m to spend on transfers during the summer of 2004 in order to bolster the squad.

But when Palace were involved in a relegation scrap after Christmas, Dowie's pleas for additional funds went unanswered.

"We haven't shown enough ambition. I feel we should have got some more bodies in," Dowie said in February 2005.

"I said before the window opened that getting a couple of players might prove the difference between us staying up and being relegated. I stand by that."

Dowie also hinted that Jordan had harmed their chances of bringing in new players.

"We're in the real world and we have to deal with agents - if you speak to every other manager, they will say the same," he said.

Despite Palace's subsequent relegation, Jordan stuck by his manager, who had signed a four-year deal at the start of the previous season.

Midway through last season, Dowie was said to have considered a move to either Portsmouth or Rangers, after reports of a row with Jordan.

More speculation followed after their play-off defeat to Watford, with Middlesbrough, Charlton, Ipswich and Preston touted as possible destinations for Dowie.

Even so, Dowie insisted it was his family in the north of England that was behind his departure from Selhurst Park.

Despite those family pressures, Dowie plans to go to the World Cup, which drew a sharp riposte from Jordan.

"You should do some clothes shopping. Get a bit of decent clobber."

Dowie finally looked at his former boss and afforded a smile.



SEE ALSO
Palace reject 8m bid for Johnson
22 May 06 |  Football
Boss Dowie leaves post at Palace
22 May 06 |  Crystal Palace


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