Crystal Palace lost 2-1 against Watford in the Premier League on Saturday
Last Updated: 12/01/19 6:36pm
Roy Hodgson says defeat to Watford is “tough to accept”, but admits he could not say the visitors were undeserving of their win.
Crystal Palace went ahead in the 38th minute after a scrambled own goal from Craig Cathcart, but an equaliser from the Watford defender plus a wonderful volley from Tom Cleverley in the second half gave Watford a 2-1 win.
Hodgson said his side should really have taken something from the game but was impressed with Cleverley’s winner.
“They are a very dangerous team in and around the box and they are good at set plays, one of which led to the equaliser. We were then the recipient of a wonder-goal from Tom Cleverley – it bounced quite nicely for him and he hit the volley quite brilliantly,” he told Sky Sports.
“Then you’re 2-1 down and you’re really chasing the game. It becomes very open when we lose the ball and in the end, you’re not only worried that you’re not going to get the equaliser – which we didn’t – you’re also concerned that on one of the counter-attacks, they’re going to break away and add to the score.
“In the end, it’s one of those game you have to accept but it is tough to accept it because I think we did enough to get at least a point out of the game but to go away with literally nothing is quite harsh.
“But on the other hand, I can’t say it was undeserved from Watford’s point of view either because they played a good game, did what they had to do and when they got their noses in front, they knew how to defend it.”
Christian Benteke made a return to action after being sidelined for 20 games through injury, coming on as a 77th-minute substitute, and Hodgson hopes he and fellow striker Connor Wickham can help Crystal Palace up front.
“Both him and Connor [Wickham] coming back gives us a different type of attacker up there than we have had up to now with Wilf [Zaha], Andros [Townsend] and Jordan [Ayew], who did well today but he is a very different type of player to the other two,” he added.
“We hope we can keep them fit, we hope we can get them match-fit and we hope they can produce some of the form we know they are capable of. There’s going to be 16 tough games coming up, we’re going to need points in those matches and we’re going to need those guys to step up to the plate and score some goals for us.”