'They made us much weaker': Roy Hodgson slams Crystal Palace youngsters in remarkable rant

Blistering rant: Roy Hodgson (REUTERS)
Blistering rant: Roy Hodgson (REUTERS)

Roy Hodgson has slammed the performances of three of his young substitutes, saying they made Crystal Palace “much weaker” against Tottenham.

Hodgson brought Matheus Franca, 19, and Jesurun Rak-Sakyi and Naouirou Ahamada, both 21, off the bench in the second half of Friday’s 2-1 defeat to Spurs at Selhurst Park.

But, speaking afterward, Palace’s 76-year-old manager gave a brutally frank assessment of the trio’s contribution to the match.

Comparing the 2-1 loss to last weekend’s 4-0 thumping at Newcastle, Hodgson said: “There was no disappointment today. Although, maybe the young substitutes — who we like to think we can believe in and help us to a different level — didn’t show that.

“They didn’t do anything for us at all, really. We became much weaker when I made the substitutions.”

Hodgson did then appear to contradict himself by saying he feels some have “imbued” Franca in particular with qualities he does not yet possess, and insisted the player “needs to be given time".

“I feel sorry for Franca," he said of the Brazilian summer signing from Flamengo, who was making his home debut.

Assessing Palace’s overall display, Hodgson said he felt Joel Ward's own goal, which gave Spurs the lead, was the end of his side’s defensive organisation in the match.

He continued: “It gave them a chance to relax a little bit more, after the pressure we were able to exert on them in the first half. The goal meant that what had given me such encouragement dissipated after that.

“If the game had ended with us continuing as we had in the first half, we’d have drawn. I’m really pleased with what I’ve seen.”