ange postecoglouCrystal PalaceFootballHeung-Min Sonjames maddisonMicky van de VenPremier Leagueroy hodgsonTottenham Hotspur

Hodgson pays glowing tribute to ‘very, very good’ Tottenham after Palace win

Tottenham Hotspur’s poise in possession killed Crystal Palace’s hopes after that Joel Ward own goal gifted Ange Postecoglou’s Premier League leaders the advantage at Selhurst Park, Eagles boss Roy Hodgson admits. 

At one point in the first half, there was only one team which looked like scoring. And it wasn’t the side sitting pretty at the top of the table. 

Guglielmo Vicario had been by far the busier of the two goalkeepers in South London – the Italian pulled off one particularly eye-catching, peak-David de Gea-esque reaction save early on – while Tottenham were made to wait over 40 minutes for their first shot on target. 

Crystal Palace v Tottenham Hotspur - Premier League
Photo by Charlotte Wilson/Offside/Offside via Getty Images

But once James Maddison fizzed a ball across the face of goal, diverted in by the helpless, hapless Joel Ward, Tottenham seized the game in a vice-like grip, Postecoglou’s controlled, death-by-a-thousand-passes approach keeping Palace at arms’ length as Spurs doubled their lead through Heung-Min Son soon after. 

Tottenham beat Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park

“I thought we gave them a good game throughout. We were playing against a good team,” Hodgson tells Sky Sports. “When that first goal goes in, with all their ability to keep possession, that unfortunately changed things a bit. 

“I don’t think we could have done more than we did against them because they were determined not to let us do what we wanted to do.

“We were playing against a team who were top of the league. They were 2-0 up, and we were trying. We wanted it, and we want to do the right things. But they’re not top of the league for nothing.” 

Spurs go five points clear

Maddison, arguably the best signing made by any Premier League club over the summer, played a major part in both goals, with Cristian Romero and Micky van de Ven laying the foundations at the other end. Tottenham’s new look centre-half partnership a throwback to the Jan Vertonghen-Toby Alderweireld days.  

“They have very, very good players,” Hodgson adds. “They’re organised defensively and, what’s more, with a 2-0 lead, it was very easy for them to take all the time in the world on the ball and we were the ones trying to chase and hurry them.” 

Tottenham are now five points clear at the top, albeit having played a game more than reigning champions Manchester City.

Related Topics



Back to top button