Hodgson Blames Injuries & Throw-Ins For Palace’s Loss In FA Cup Quarter-Final

0 Posted by - March 18, 2019 - News

Roy Hodgson has blamed injuries and throw-ins for Crystal Palace’s failure to advance beyond Watford in the FA Cup, after the Hornets ran out 2-1 winners in Saturday’s Quarter-Final between the two sides at Vicarage Road. 

Having lost Mamadou Sakho a few weeks back with a problem which required surgery, Hodgson and his Palace staff were dealt the significant blow of doing without Wilfried Zaha too, thanks to a hamstring problem the winger picked up against Brighton last weekend. Having not trained on it for a few days following the game against the Seagulls, there was some hope that the 26-year-old would return for the FA Cup tie but when push came to shove, it was deemed to be far too big a risk for the club to take with our Premier League status still not secured. 

It seems as though Hodgson is hopeful if not certain of Zaha returning for the first game back after the international break at home to Huddersfield, which explains the risks that would have come with playing him at Watford and potentially causing far more damage to an existing problem. With both he and Sakho missing, it’s no surprise to hear the boss reference it in summing up where the tie got away from us. 

Having got back to all square thanks to Michy Batshuayi’s equaliser, Hodgson also bemoaned the amount of throw-ins which followed Watford’s second goal of the day. Understandably given what was at stake, Watford did all they could to run the clock down after re-taking the lead and whilst I can agree with Roy that is was frustrating to see, the obvious solution to such a thing would have been to show more proactive tactics once back on level terms in a bid to prevent Andre Gray’s winner from finding the back of the net. 

We all know that hindsight is a man’s best friend but as supporters, we’ve now seen back-to-back games in which Palace have regained parity after falling behind, only to figuratively take our foot off their throats and concede once more. The passive nature of our play on both occasions has been maddening to see and without any real tactical explanation from the boss, I’m not sure moans and groans about a high number of throw-ins really cuts it. 

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  • Gordon March 18, 2019 - 7:39 am Reply

    Don’t think Roy can be criticised for reflecting on the unavailability of 2 key players and the frustration we all felt as the ball seemed to spend so little time in play during the last 10 minutes as we tried to respond to Watford’s late goal.
    With hindsight we might question whether it would have been better to take more risks by pressing hard for the win before Gray scored or whether, perhaps, it could have been us rather than Watford who made the decisive substitution. But, at the time, we were giving as good as we got and there was the propect of extra time to consider. Our options on the bench were limited. With Zaha missing & Schlupp covering for PVA, the stage was set for Bakary Sako to make a key contribution, so for me his absence through injury was particularly frustrating. But without fresh attacking midfielders to call on from the bench, the only change we could make would have been to switch to 2 strikers and I think I’d have chosen to hold fire if I’d been in Roy’s shoes rather than commit ourselves to such a high risk strategy for potentially 70 minutes or more.

  • Steve. March 18, 2019 - 7:47 am Reply

    I didn’t notice the ball being out of play that much…but I did notice Watford doing what any team would do and take the ball to the corner flag and frustrate the opposition.
    In any case if the ball was played out by Watford..the throw in mean Palace have possession…oh wait, that’s where we lose it again as our throw ins are in the main useless… and guess what Watford get the ball back.
    Nah that’s pretty feeble Roy…we were unable to retain possession by finding our own players.

  • tzcar March 18, 2019 - 8:00 am Reply

    i feel rh,is losing the plot.he knows their is unrest and it,s building amongst the fan,s to rh excuses.last season we were on par with watford.now whose the better team.the performance is and should be a reflection of the manager.and the general fan,s recognise this. therefore the failure is largely down to the manager.his tactics lack sparkle,and are out of date.this is becoming the general consensus.

    • Gordon March 18, 2019 - 10:23 am Reply

      In suppose Watford are currently pretty much where Burnley were last season. Burnley’s current position shows how close the margins are between success & failur for most clubs in the PL Some clubs will punch above their weight occasionally but that’s not to say that they’ve “arrived”. I’d far prefer we punched at our weight and were stable.

  • tzcar March 18, 2019 - 11:53 am Reply

    watford are a much better team than burnley.closer to wolves in style/performance all credit to them.in the end we,ve stood still,same old relegation scrap.now it,s time to think of the future,and progression.i love what roy,s done for us and his-self.but my instinct say,s we need change come june.

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