Roy Hodgson admits the way the Crystal Palace players bought into his methods last season helped them stay in the Premier League. The former England manager was drafted in to stem the bleeding after the Eagles failed to take a point or even score goal from their first seven games last term.
While success was not immediate, there were soon points on the board and the Selhurst Park outfit ended up in 11th place in the table.
That was a remarkable achievement given their start and Hodgson, as he celebrates a year in charge of the team, confessed that he inherited a group of players who were all willing to knuckle down for the good of the club.
“My first impression of the squad was quite positive, but I was coming in at a very difficult time,” he told Palace TV. “However, the players – despite the results and criticisms about playing seven games and scoring no goals – their attitude on the training field was good.
“We established a way of working, and we didn’t have any dissenters saying ‘we don’t like the way you’re asking us to play’, so it was just a question of chipping away day after day trying to improve our performances.”
Palace have won one and lost three of their first four games this term and will hope to improve that record when they travel to the John Smith’s Stadium to face Huddersfield Town on Saturday afternoon.