Crystal Palace have announced the appointment of Frank de Boer as their new manager. The Dutchman has penned a three-year deal to succeed Sam Allardyce, who announced his departure and potential retirement last month just a couple of weeks after leading the Eagles to Premier League safety.
De Boer emerged as the favourite for the Selhurst Park job last week, with main rival Mauricio Pellegrino eventually taking the reins at Southampton. The 47-year-old had been without a club since an unhappy stint in charge of Inter Milan ended after just 85 days in November 2016 following a disappointing run of just four wins in 11 Serie A matches.
De Boer had previously established his managerial credentials at Ajax, where, after spells as a youth coach and assistant of the Dutch national team, he became the only manager in Eredivisie history to win four consecutive titles.
He spent the majority of an illustrious playing career that included 112 international caps in Amsterdam and Barcelona, later turning out for the likes of Galatasaray and Rangers as well as Qatari duo Al-Rayyan and Al-Shamal.
Palace scheduled a 14.00 BST press conference on Monday (26 June) to officially confirm De Boer's arrival, having previously whetted supporters' appetites with a clever tweet that pictured white smoke billowing out of the chimney of a local Caribbean takeaway in Pope-esque fashion.
"I'm very excited because it's been a long period where I haven't managed a squad, but I'm also excited to be a manager in the biggest league in the world," De Boer said during his first interview with cpfc.co.uk. "Crystal Palace is a great club with fantastic facilities to work in and a fantastic fanbase, so I can't wait to start.
"I did my homework and we have a solid squad. Of course, they struggled last season especially in the beginning, but with Sam Allardyce they managed to get out of the relegation zone. We have a very solid squad with some very good players, with [Christian] Benteke the most famous as well as [Wilfried] Zaha."
Asked as to his summer transfer plans, he added: "I want to know everyone first; that for me is very important. I of course have my ideas because I have watched videos on the squad so I might know there might be a player that can be interesting for us, but I firstly want to see everyone and then we can make decisions."
Palace chairman Steve Parish, who conducted a long and detailed search for Allardyce's replacement, praised De Boer's "calibre and experience". The club also took the opportunity to announce that international gaming company ManBetX had agreed to become their new shirt sponsor on a multi-year deal said to be the eighth most valuable in the Premier League.