I don’t want to see a headline saying “Hodgson must go”

EXCLUSIVE: As part of a wide-ranging interview about his new book and football, one of Palace’s best-known fans, Kevin Day, says it could be time for change. By ELLA HOPKINS

Roy Hodgson: says he’s not ready to retire yet

Roy Hodgson, the Crystal Palace manager, has said ahead of tonight’s Premier League game at Arsenal that he would like to continue in the job beyond the expiry of his contract in the summer.

The future at the club of the 73-year-old former England boss has been a talking point among Eagles fans for months, with Palace’s sometimes cautious playing style causing growing disquiet.

And in an exclusive Under The Flyover podcast interview with Inside Croydon, Kevin Day, one of the club’s best-known celebrity fans, has added his voice to that debate.

“I don’t want to see an Inside Croydon headline saying, ‘Kevin Day says Hodgson must go’,” said the comedian and TV comedy writer, while adding that he “wouldn’t be upset” if the club were to find a new manager.

“I think this will be Roy Hodgson’s last club,” said Day, who writes scripts for television programmes including Match of the Day 2, A League of Their Own and Have I Got News For You.

“I don’t want him to be sacked, and I don’t think Steve Parish wants to be the man who sacks Roy Hodgson.

Professor-like: with his languages and literature knowledge, Hodgson is like an Oxford don, says Day

“When we get back to watching football, I’d like to see Palace play more positive, attacking football.

“I think Roy’s done a fantastic job for us, keeping us up.

“The fans that don’t like Roy Hodgson are Liverpool fans and England fans. The two biggest jobs he did he probably wasn’t right for.

“But if you talk to Fulham fans or West Brom fans, or fans of Milan or clubs in Switzerland, they love him. They think he’s brilliant.”

Hodgson came out of retirement and took over at Selhurst Park in 2017, when the club was going through one of its latest relegation battles.

Croydon-born Hodgson has enjoyed a 45-year managerial career, but over that time, Day says, football has changed significantly.

“When he started playing and managing football, he didn’t have to deal with agents or the media on a daily basis. He just coached football players who were the same age as him. Now football has become the seventh or eighth thing he has to do in a day after talking to Sky or the BBC.

Kevin Day: be careful what you wish for

“I just think there comes a time”, Day said, “where it becomes increasingly difficult for him to communicate with younger players.”

“But there is that element of you beware of what you wish for. Like we did with De Boer. You can get a young, interesting continental manager who comes in and does a terrible job.” It was De Boer’s sacking, 10 weeks into the job and after four straight league defeats without a single goal, that led to Hodgson’s appointment.

Hodgson, who speaks five languages and is an expert on Russian literature, is “one of the most interesting people I’ve ever met”, says Day, who compares him to an Oxford Don.

“He’s very unlike the cliché of what people outside football imagine a football manager would be.

“When he’s not Palace manager, people will be a lot more affectionate towards him than they are now. They’ll realise what he’s done for us when he’s no longer with us.

“He probably won’t be too unhappy to leave football when he does.

“But I would like it to be his decision.”

Kevin Day’s new book, Who Are Ya? 92 Football Clubs – and Why You Shouldn’t Support Them, with a foreword by Gary Lineker, is published by Bloomsbury.

You can hear Day discuss the book, his passion for Palace, who writes Lineker’s jokes and how to start a career in comedy on the latest Under The Flyover podcast, unique content that is available in advance exclusively to Inside Croydon subscribers.

Click here to sign up as an Inside Croydon supporter today and hear the Kevin Day interview in full.


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2 Responses to I don’t want to see a headline saying “Hodgson must go”

  1. Ian says:

    most of what Mr Day has said I would agree with however his comment regarding both England and Liverpool is untrue. I as a Liverpool fan since the age of 5 a crystal palace fan since 1978 and (even with dual nationality) a full supporter of England since a child also. If anything, mine and many supporters (Liverpool and England)views are that Roy had a poor time at both England and Liverpool but not due to his ability or Roy as a person, in fact far from it. In this spell at Palace he has done sterling work in a difficult environment no more or less than he has always done. He is an extremely experienced Manager. If people do not like the way the team plays and how he sets them up, they need to take into account that perhaps neither does he but he has a duty to the club to get results and that he has done to the best of his ability. When his contract is up if he and the board feel he can do well for another year then he would have my and many’s full support to do so and we will put up with the style as there have been memories of beating Man Utd last September and a high score at WBA with many other matches over the last few years. Yes there have been bad ones also and that is football life. As a Liverpool fan had a bad day with the 7 nil Aston Villa game, I also had a bad day with the beating 7 nil by Liverpool of my home team, but watched a great game with Palace playing their all (ok heads went down after three but still). Roy should not be sacked he should be promoted as even if retired he has so much to offer the club.

  2. Chris Summer says:

    Be careful what you wish for Palace fans.

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