Manager Watch: Solskjaer off to a flyer, Palace thriving under Pulis

FA Cup

With so many coaches having been given their marching orders this season, Manager Watch has decided to celebrate some managerial success for a change.

FA Cup weekend continues today but we have already seen some notable results. Sheffield United grabbed a fantastic victory over Aston Villa, Arsenal beat north London rivals Tottenham 2-0 and Blackburn held Manchester City to a 1-1 draw.

But two sides in particular stood out on Saturday, in no small part down to their managers. In tribute, Manager Watch has decided to celebrate the success of two of the Premier League's newest coaches.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer

Manchester United legend Ole Gunnar Solskjaer got off to a flying start as Cardiff boss this weekend, as his Bluebirds side claimed an impressive FA Cup upset at Newcastle United.

And what was particularly encouraging was the manner of the victory.

Solskjaer's side had, understandably, struggled to contain an in-form Magpies side for the opening hour of the game and the 40-year-old responded by throwing on Fraizer Campbell.

Newcastle took the lead moments later but Campbell, and Solskjaer's second substitute, Craig Noone, both struck late in the game to seal a dramatic triumph for the Bluebirds.

It seems Solskjaer's reputation precedes him, with the 'super-sub' from Norway now picking the men who come off the bench and change a game. Any more of the same and the 40-year-old could prove a truly inspired choice by owner Vincent Tan.

Tony Pulis

Another man to triumph on Saturday - and over an extended period of time now - was Crystal Palace boss Tony Pulis.

Palace went to the Hawthorns to play a West Brom side that had not lost under caretaker boss Keith Downing (with Downing also claiming that the Baggies can go all the way and win the FA Cup this year) and won 2-0.

Goals from Dwight Gayle and Marouane Chamakh guided the Eagles to the fourth round and it is the success of such players that epitomises Pulis' effective management style.

Simply put, the 55-year-old is a man manager who possess the ability to motivate almost anyone. And Pulis' motivational skills have reaped superb rewards at Selhurst Park so far.

As well as progressing in the FA Cup, Palace have won five in nine under the former Stoke boss, with their only defeats coming against Chelsea, Newcastle and Manchester City.

Who could have seen that coming when the Eagles were rock bottom of the Premier League in November?

image: © flawka

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