LONDON (REUTERS) - Tony Pulis is relishing the task of trying to maintain his proud 21-year record of never having been relegated as a manager after officially taking over at struggling Crystal Palace on Monday.
"Everybody talks about me being a firefighter but I've been promoted out of every division in English football. I've been to an FA Cup final (in 2011) and taken Stoke into Europe," the 55-year-old told reporters.
"I'm still very, very ambitious. I like climbing hills and this is going to be a tough job but one I relish," said Mr Pulis who has signed a two and a half year deal at the south London club.
Promoted Palace are second from bottom despite a morale-boosting 1-0 win at Hull City at the weekend.
Mr Pulis said caretaker manager Keith Millen, who oversaw the Hull win, would stay on the coaching staff.
When Mr Pulis was asked why he had joined Palace he replied: "Why not? It's a club in the Premier League, it's a smashing club, it's got great history.
"This is an opportunity and a chance to try and achieve something that Palace haven't achieved yet and that is to get promoted into the Premier League and then stay there." Mr Pulis, who has also managed lower league Gillingham, Bournemouth, Bristol City, Portsmouth and Plymouth Argyle, left Stoke City by mutual consent in May after seven years in charge.
Two years into his reign he guided the club to the top flight after a 23-year absence. Mr Pulis replaces Ian Holloway who left Palace in October after less than a year in charge.