Mourinho’s former assistant could take over at Crystal Palace

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Aitor Karanka, a former Real Madrid defender and assistant to José Mourinho during his time with the Spanish giants, may be in line to replace Ian Holloway at Crystal Palace. Palace have been without a permanent manager since October 23, when Holloway stepped down. Since that time, the club has been linked with Wales manager Chris Coleman, former Stoke City boss Tony Pulis, and Martin O’Neill, who accepted the Republic of Ireland gig this week.

Appointing Karanka would be a bit outside the box. The 40 year old may have been Mourinho’s number two at the Bernabéu, but he has no experience taking on the No. 1 role, nor has he worked in England. But Karanka did well in his interview this week, impressing Palace co-chairman Steve Parish. It doesn’t hurt, either, that Mourinho himself speaks highly of his former assistant, saying “”I think the club that gets him, whether in England or another country, will be a lucky club.”

After losing to West Brom last weekend, Crystal Palace have now lost seven in a row. The side, temporarily managed by Keith Millen, are bottom of the Premier League, and have the thankless task of facing Everton on Saturday. If Karanka is brought on board, he could be in place after the international break, in time for the clash against Hull City.