Wenger - Holloway has exceptional talent

Arsene Wenger has praised the “exceptional work” Ian Holloway performed during his spell as Crystal Palace manager.

Holloway left the south London club by mutual consent on Wednesday after his side had taken just three points from their first eight games this season.

But the Frenchman insisted it was “harsh” on the 50-year-old after he got the Eagles into the top flight.

"When you go through defeat after defeat when you want absolutely everything to win, it can drain you down"

Arsene Wenger

"I feel that it's very harsh on Ian Holloway because he has done exceptionally well with Crystal Palace to get them up to the Premier League," said Wenger. "It's very difficult to do that and I find it very quick and very early to separate from Ian Holloway. For me, he has exceptional talent to manage a football team.

"He is a football man. He has something that belongs to him that he is special but you feel there is a strength in there that can take people on board with him.

"When you go through defeat after defeat when you want absolutely everything to win, it can drain you down. That can happen to everybody and when you are a bit older you can maybe deal with it a little bit better. But what is the killer in our job is to lose a succession of games and when you lose five, six or seven on the trot that is difficult to swallow."

Former Stoke manager Tony Pulis has been widely tipped to take over at Selhurst Park and Wenger thinks it would be a wise choice.

"I heard that they wanted to go for a manager with experience,” he said. "Pulis is one of them and of course, if he gets there, he will certainly play his way and demand huge commitment. He has done well at Stoke in the way he wants to play the game and he has been very efficient.

"I believe you can only be a good manager if you play with your gut feeling and that can be different. But you can only be good if you're completely in accordance with the way you see the game."

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