Sunday, July 14, 2024

Confirmed: Rob Holding joins Crystal Palace

Rob Holding has joined Crystal Palace in a permanent deal that is reported to be worth £4 million.

The centre-back leaves Arsenal, heading into the final year of his contract, after seven years at the club with a couple of FA Cup medals and three Community Shields to his name. He has signed a three year deal at Selhurst Park.

Signed out of the blue from Bolton Wanderers for £2 million, Holding was a bit of a punt by Arsene Wenger who became a solid and reliable first team squad member.

Just a month after he signed Holding, Wenger, facing a backlash from supporters for being parsimonious in the transfer market, quipped: “Nobody is speaking about the performance of Rob Holding today. You should be happy; he is English, he is 20 years old, but I’m sorry he didn’t cost £55m, so it cannot be good.”

By the end of his first year, the terraces had taken the player to heart with nicknames (Bobby Holdini) and chants (“He’s better than Cannavaro”) that referenced his talent alongside masters of Italian defending.

He earned both thanks to his performance in the 2017 FA Cup when he stepped up during an injury crisis to star as part of a three-man backline that beat Manchester City in the semi-final before securing an against-the-odds 2-1 win over Chelsea in the final. The image of him mouthing off at Diego Costa is definitely one for the scrapbook.

Three years later, Holding started a second FA Cup final against Chelsea, this time without fans in attendance, as Mikel Arteta’s side came from behind to secure the trophy for the 14th time in Arsenal’s history. Of the 11 players who started in red that day, only two remain on the books – Nicolas Pepe and Kieran Tierney – and their days also look numbered.

In total, Holding made 162 appearances for Arsenal under three different managers. He arguably played his most consistent and best football under Unai Emery but cruelly had his progress hampered by an ACL injury that ruled him out of action just as he was being tipped for an England call-up.

Last season, Holding played 24 times, including 14 matches in the Premier League, but more often than not, it was as a substitute as we closed up shop. When he did start, it became increasingly obvious that the gap was widening between himself and those ahead of him in the pecking order.

Testing himself in pastures new certainly makes sense at this point of his career. He potentially has quite a few years ahead of him at the top of the game and it wouldn’t surprise us to see him thrive if he’s trusted with regular minutes.

We wish Rob all the best for the future.

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Kentish Gooner

£4m for a proven PL centre back in this day and age is daylight robbery, he’s worth at least £10m, but good luck to Rob. Been class from the moment he made his move to us and I’m sure all gooners will wish him all the best.

Determination Cultured

Cos we are shit sellers.


I thought cos he has like 1 year left on his contract and we were a bit desperate to get rid.

Alberto Balsam Mendez Rodriguez

1 year, plus another optional.

Gervinho is Driving

I’m sorry he didn’t cost £50 million


Laters Rob Cannavaro. Wish you the very best of luck. I’ll never forgive your shithousery in the FA CUP. You’ve always been there for the team. And that hair…


I do not understand the price. Can anyone explain? Was it £14 Million?


£1million + 2.5 million add-ons.


£1m + £2.5m in add ons according to David Ornstein or £4m according to Fabrizio Romano, Sam Dean, and most others I’ve seen.

Determination Cultured

When fabrizio says something. We listen.

Spanish Gooner

It’s a player we have got the best part of a decade of service out of for £2m on low wages being allowed to stay in London and get the first team football he deserves. I’m sure we’d have liked a higher fee, but moving him on was the right thing to do.

Tomiyasu vain

I hope though that Fulham (Leno) and Palace remember this generosity in the interest of the player when we come looking for someone they have on thr books

Crash Fistfight

They won’t


He was undoubtedly one of the most under appreciated player during our most volatile periods in the last 6 years. A true professional, and a steller performer who gave it his all despite his limitations in some games. We will always remember Bobby Holdings in the positive light that he deserves. Good luck RH. 👍🏼

Chipper 49

Pleased for him getting his move , he deserves first team football . Think I’d have preferred Spain if I were him but hey. 🤷He’ll always be part of our history for the way he and the BFG took care of Costa in the cup final .
4 million though , really ?

Emi Rates

Honourable mention also for the swift justice he served that thug cunt Arnautovic.

Thank you and all the best at Palace, Rob!


Underated player, great dedication to club and a true professional. Can’t blame him for leaving to get more game time and will do great at Palace. He’s the kinda player that I’d hope would get applause from our supporters when he returns


My daughter is heartbroken. I texted her with the news, and got these responses:

My husband is leaving?


Then there was just Mo from the Wenger Era. Good luck to The Stalybridge Maldini. He can now spread the word on his “truly resilient” hair across South London


Didn’t Eddie make his first team debut under Wenger?


And Reiss Nelson too I’m pretty sure


I meant in terms of being signed by Arsene


Fine then 🙂 but I think even Arsene himself would tell you Eddie and Reiss were LANS


Aaaw man !!! Rob Holding gone !!! I’ll miss that man and I wish him all the very best in his new venture ! Him & Mertesacker in that final will always remain in my memory !
Best of luck Rob & thanks mate you’re a true Gooner !

Mikels Arteta

I think we could see him back at the club one day. In some capacity with the academy/recruitment setup


Seriously how is a proven PL centre back who’s homegrown and English not worth at least double figures? We really need to be doing better with players who are no longer part of the plans next summer.


There are always two parties negotiating. And their batnas can be wildly different. Everyone knew Arsenal wanted to treat rob with respect, that rob wanted to move, and there have always been questions about his true ceiling.
I think he will do well at CP, but they didn’t have to buy him.

Crash Fistfight

Well, I Tavares rips it up this season we’ll get a whacking £12m for him. What more do you want?!


Top guy, he always did his best, and I think he’s a decent character to have in the group. I wish him all the luck in the world. Got a lot of time for him.


Shocked at the price. OK, I of course don’t see him ahead of Gabriel, Saliba, or White, but I’ve always thought he was a very good player. I always liked him a lot. Sad to see him go, but hope he finds success!


Love this guy. Underrated player. Great bloke. Deserves the best.


Almost teared up during that vid – to me he is he most likable arsenal player along with granit from the last 3 years – him and Tierney dancing in the amazon doc – damn…I also know how much he would of liked to help the team even as a sub. I want to win but I don’t ever want us to become a team of bots like man city. All the best Arsenal legend Rob♥️

Spanish Gooner

Lovely to see corporal jenks in the goodbye video from Arsenal


Love me some Rob Holding.
Wish him well in every game but two each season from now on.


The low price suggests it was Arsenal pushing the move rather than Palace.
Good luck Rob, and hope you get to play against ‘Nutter’ Costa again one day.


That fee is shameful and atrocious. He’s a decent, English, proven PL defender. I’m sure this was more about getting the wages off the book and getting something for him before his contract expires , but CP got the much better end of this deal.

Mikels Arteta

If the only other interested parties where 2 clubs in Spain, CP would only have to match their valuation knowing they can offer higher wages

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

So… is Pepe now Saka’s backup


All the best to rob


We must be the most reasonable club to deal with when it comes to transfers. 27 year old defender with years of premier league experience and we can’t even get 10m for him. Yet, teams are selling kids with barely a years EPL experience for 30m. There is something seriously wrong with how we value our players.

Crash Fistfight

Apparently Man City 𝘳𝘦𝘫𝘦𝘤𝘵𝘦𝘥 a £30m+ bid for some lad who spent the season on loan at Sheffield United.

Nottingham Forest just paid £11m for some defender from Norwich I’ve never heard of.

The list goes on.

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

The 30 odd million for Balogun is our record fee received. That says it all


Amended it is £1m + £2.5m add on check Ornstein latest post. We need another guy to help Edu, he is piss pooorrrr at selling.

Crash Fistfight

That is putting it lightly.

He manages the club’s money like a rich kid spending their trust fund.

Gunnar Elí

Holdini ❤️

Determination Cultured

Surprised pep or man u’s haggy-antonyisabrazillianwinglegend-rashesisbetterthansakambappe&slicedbread boy didny sign him just to unlock the secrets to his golden locks.

Death by 300,000 Passes

A true Gooner! Good luck, Rob! Time to show them what you can do!


It’s an odd one.
Rob Holding was not good enough for the first team but his departure leaves us think in defence now that Timber has a long term injury. Just have to hope that Saliba – White and (assuming he does not leave for the lucrative Saudi Arabian league) Gabriel as centre backs.
Good luck to him though..


Good decision to stay in the Premier League. He can do well at Palace, who have a good team. Afterall, he’s better than Cannavaro!

Arteta ball

Good luck Holding. Its always sad to see an arsenal player leave when things don’t work out especially for young english players.

Merlin’s Panini

We’ve had our pants pulled down by Palace with this one. Holding is a decent centre back with good experience in the league. £4million is not even half his worth but he had to go to get more game time and fulfil his potential.
For a while I thought he would be our new Bouldy.
I hope he does well there. He could thrive in the atmosphere at Selhurst Park where they love to make things hard for the opposition. He loves a bit of shithousing despite clearly being a genuinely nice bloke. Good luck to him, except against us.

Awesome Wenger

Good luck legend!
Better than Harry Maguire

He’s got no hair but we don’t care...

We’ve had some stunning recruitment over the last few years, including the capture of Rice BUT the selling continues to be laughable.
£4M for Rob Holding is shameful.

Crash Fistfight

By “stunning” do you mean we’ve paid a lot of money for them? Because I can’t think of any player purchases that were shocks, any players that were ‘discovered’ or any bargains under Edu (how many have been for exactly what the selling club asked for before we spent weeks ‘negotiating’ with them?).

Frankly, I’ve no idea why people think he’s doing a good job. I think he’s doing the bare minimum.

Dr. Gooner

Martinelli for 6 million
Trossard for 20
Big Gabi for 26
Gabi J and Zinchenko for 30s
Odegaard for 30s
Tomi for 18
Kiwior for 13
Even Ben White for 50 or Ramsdale for 30s

You don’t see value there?

He’s doing a good job because Arsenal are signing players that are making us better, even if you don’t think the above represents good value. Look around and tell me which club has bought better in the last 2-3 years. City, Real Madrid… after that, crickets.


It’s sad that, when we’re holding on, Holding on will no longer be an option.


Watch him becoming CP player of the season. I think the style of play there suits him more. All the best Rob and sorry you didn’t cost us 55mil !

Mikels Arteta

He should don the number 55!


And now only three players remain who played in the first team under Arsène.


Rob might not have the highest talent, but he’s definitely up there when it comes to Heart.
He just takes the chance when given. Doesn’t sulk or moan and gives support to team behind the scenes.

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