Hodgson - Form Is Slowly Turning
Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson has admitted that fighting back from behind to take a point from West Ham this weekend shows the growing confidence and character of the side.
Having fallen two nil down on the day at Selhurst Park, Luka Milivojevic and Wilfried Zaha got us back on level terms in the second period as we took the late point on the day, and Hodgson was taking the positives from the day.
Speaking to Crystal Palace FC as he met with the press following the game, Hodgson knew that coming back from two nil down was it's own statement but he did admit disappointment that the performance hadn't returned a win with the chances we had.
'I still think it`s scant reward personally from the 90 minutes of football. In the first half we weren`t anywhere near as good as we were in the second, and it was merited that we went into it two goals down. In the second half, the domination and the number of times we had the ball in and around the penalty area meant that when we did get those two goals, it was nothing more than the team deserved.'
Having come from behind in the game, and two down at that, Hodgson went on to say that it bodes well for the future.
'It shows me that this team has more character than they`ve sometimes been credited with. I think it would have been very easy for some people at half-time to feel very sorry for themselves wondering how they were two goals down in a game like this, and that things aren`t fair. When you`ve been in football for a while you have to come away from what`s fair because it`s a game, not a science, and you don`t always get what you think you deserve, so it was a strong performance in the second half to put that 2-0 scoreline behind us. I`m hoping that it will give a little bit of confidence and security in the minds of these players, who know that even when things are going against us luck-wise, we can turn it around.'
The former England man had praise for the fans.
'It was an important day for us in terms of who work at the football club in regards to the fans. I don`t think I`ve been involved in a match which goes to the 95th minute with the home team losing and have virtually nobody leave the stadium, and then have the players cheered the way they were as they came off the field. That speaks volumes for our fans, and if we`re going to survive this season, we`re going to need that help time and time again.'
There had to be praise for Zaha with his stoppage time leveller returning the point.
'He rescued a point for us in the 96th minute with an excellent goal, so there`s no doubt where the headlines will end up, and deservedly so. He threatened that goal on several occasions beforehand and Joe Hart had an excellent game and made certain it went to the 97th minute with them still in the lead, but we got a great goal and we`re very grateful that Wilfried got that shot away.'
Hodgson also confirmed that Patrick van Aanholt has damaged his hamstring, but a full assessment isn't in yet so it's fingers crossed time.
'Van Aanholt damaged his hamstring and I can`t tell you how bad the damage is. It`ll have to be assessed and we`ve got to hope it`s not too bad. To rearrange the team like we did also showed the character out there.'
Mamadou Sakho has picked up a calf problem and that's why he missed out on the tie.
'Mamadou Sakho has a calf injury which was after the Newcastle game and he`s not trained all week; he`s been in the treatment room and we were hoping that he would have a Lazarus moment and appear straight onto the field but that didn`t happen. James McArthur got a strange ankle injury against Newcastle when no-one was close to him when it happened, but I wouldn`t rule any of them out of the Spurs game.'