BY ANDREW MCSTEEN
Crystal Palace boss Roy Hodgson admitted his side need to show more confidence as uncharacteristic individual errors unravelled the Eagles in a 4-0 loss away to Chelsea today.
Four second half goals undone a professional first half performance which saw the South London side go in at the break 0-0, but the home side came out strongly in the second period, scoring through Ben Chilwell, Kurt Zouma and twice from the penalty spot through Jorginho.
“Well, all defeats are difficult to take,” said the Palace boss. “When you get beat as heavily as four goals to nil it’s even harder. I thought in the first half we defended extremely well, and I must say I didn’t really see them scoring four goals in the second half if we’d had continued to play in that vein.
“Unfortunately, it was a day where we gifted some goals by some individual defensive errors, and it’s very hard to come over that. Certainly three of the four goals were really down to errors which you hope your defenders aren’t going to make.”
Their problems at the back were compounded by those upfront with no shots on target in the 90 minutes and just four in total, despite an attacking starting XI featuring Jordan Ayew, Wilfried Zaha, Andros Townsend and Eberechi Eze.
“I didn’t think our attacking play was very good and I didn’t think we showed anything like the sort of composure on the ball or quality on the ball, that we would have wanted to do for our passing and movement,” said the manager. “So it was a bad day for us in that respect anyway. We must give Chelsea some credit of course because they defended extremely well and made it difficult for us to get that passing and movement that we wanted.”
When asked what he and his side could learn from the defeat, Hodgson was clear.
“Don’t make any individual mistakes at the back because that tends to cost you goals, but I don’t think that’s a particularly new lesson to learn,” he said. “Also, we need to make certain that we show more confidence in ourselves when we have a chance to break out, get our foot on the ball and that we take advantage of that. We [need] to show the necessary belief in ourselves when that type of situation occurs, but otherwise I’m afraid there’s nothing to learn from it other than the fact that defeats are painful and heavy defeats are even more painful.”
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