Roy Hodgson has spoken out about our form, our fans, Rafa Benitez and Yohan Cabaye in his press conference today ahead of Palace’s trip to St James’ Park on Saturday.
The former England boss took over from Frank De Boer at in September, with the Dutchman being sacked after just four Premier League games – where they’d failed to score and goal or pick up a single point.
Since then, Hodgson’s Palace had suffered three straight defeats by an aggregate scoreline of 10-0, however his side put in a much needed performance last weekend to beat reigning Champions Chelsea 2-1 at Selhurst Park.
This saw them score their first goal and pick up their first set of points in the league this season, meaning they’ll be arriving to St James’ with some newfound confidence on Saturday.
Here’s what Hodgson has had to say on all things NUFC in his pre-match presser today:
Hodgson on Rafa Benitez:
“I think Rafa Benitez is doing very well and did well to almost save them in that year (March 2016) he joined.
“Then he stayed with them and brought them back up – they have had a great start.
“He’s done very well. The fans there love him, the players obviously like and respect him. It’s a team that’s had work done on it.
“It is a team that has had work done on it and I can only watch Newcastle and congratulate them on a good job.
Hodgson on our start to the season and the atmosphere at St James’:
“Newcastle have had a good start, a deservedly good start. We must be ready for them.
“They’re a good footballing team and they were every bit as good as I expected against Southampton.
“They were organised at Southampton and it is a fanatical atmosphere at Newcastle– it is always a challenge, however well they are playing.
“Playing at Newcastle is like coming to Selhurst, it’s a fanatical atmosphere, the support is as good as ours.
“They’ve had a very good start and we have to give exactly the same performance that we did against Chelsea.”
Hodgson on Yohan Cabaye:
“I am seeing the best of Yohan Cabaye at the moment.
“He is performing extremely well and comparing his form here to elsewhere, I can only judge him on what I have seen here at Palace.”
Some very complimentary comments from Hodgson, who clearly won’t be taking us lightly on Saturday.
Here’s hoping we can put off field distractions aside on Saturday and earn what would be a big win over a *potential* relegation rival.