Goals Are Again The Issue For Hodgson
Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson was left ruing the sides inability to take chances as we fell to defeat against Everton at the weekend.
Heading to Goodison Park for the game against former manager Sam Allardcye's new side, the game was fairly level and balanced in reality in terms of possession and chances, but after a goalless first half, Everton started the second period far brighter and took the lead through Gylfi Sigurdsson. Five minutes later Oumar Niasse doubled their advantage before Tom Davies made it three with 15 minutes left to play. Luka Milivojevic got the consolation strike inside of the final ten minutes with another penalty.
Having had more chances overall, Hodgson knew it was a lack of a clinical edge that had cost us the game as he spoke with Crystal Palace FC in his post game press conference.
'In the first half we did very well but in the second we went 2-0 down fairly early on but we stayed in the game and played hard, so I`m not disappointed with the performance at all. I`m sad we didn`t get a result because I thought at half-time we were more than capable of getting one, but it`s all about goals and Everton got them and we didn`t so they win the game.'
Hodgson went on to say.
'The team did as much as I expected them to do, but it would have been better for me if the first two goals hadn`t come their way because I thought we would have been able to continue what we did in the first half and restrict their chances.'
Finding ourselves two nil down so early on in the second half always gives you a mountain to climb, but he was pleased to see the reaction from the players at that point - again though, not being able to get on the scoresheet and change the game in that regard ultimately cost us as we had to keep chasing the match.
'It was always going to be tough to come back from 2-0 down, it always is in this league, but I thought we kept playing and tried to come back and I thought that some of our football in that period was more than acceptable, but it didn`t produce the goal, and the third put the game beyond our reach.'
Reflecting on the goals against us on the day, the former England man went on to say.
'The first goal was a long goal kick that got headed up into the air and the second centre-back got caught on the wrong side of Sigurdsson, dived in to challenge and Sigurdsson skipped past him, and Tomkins went for the block and it deflected in. The second was simply we had enough players around the ball in the far corner but it got slipped in and Andros Townsend got caught on the wrong side of his man and allowed the ball to be crossed for them to score the goal. To be honest we didn`t lose today because we were lacking players, we lost because we were punished for the defensive mistakes that we made. All goals are defensive mistakes; there isn`t a goal you can`t not trace back to a defensive mistake somewhere down the line, but we lost because of that - not that we were totally outplayed or because Zaha or Sakho didn`t play.'
One positive from the game in his eyes was the debut of new signing Alexander Sorloth and he was pleased with what he saw from the player.
'I thought he did well - he hasn`t played for two months because the season in Denmark finishes in mid-December. He`s only played two 45 minute friendlies so I was quite surprised he lasted the pace of the game and I was impressed with his determination and aggression.'