Belfast Telegraph

I'll guide my beloved Palace to success, vows Hodgson

 

By Declan Warrington

Crystal Palace have confirmed the appointment of Roy Hodgson as their new manager in place of the sacked Frank de Boer. The Croydon-born Hodgson will be returning to the club with whom he began his playing career in 1965.

"It is very rewarding to find myself here now, in different times, as the Palace manager at a club that I have always loved and admired with a huge potential," he said.

"The ambitions here are realistic and there is an enormous potential for growth and I hope we can achieve our goals."

Hodgson, 70, had emerged as the clear front-runner for the Palace role even before the 1-0 defeat at Burnley on Sunday which sealed De Boer's fate, the Dutchman departing just 77 days into a three-year contract.

Palace are the first team in England's top division to lose their opening four games without scoring a goal since Preston 93 years ago.

It is also Hodgson's first role since his ignominious departure from the England job after their shock Euro 2016 defeat to Iceland.

"I didn't want to end it (my career) on a bad result but I think the 56 games and the seven defeats is not so bad," he said.

"I think we changed the team around and the young, exciting team you see today is the team I was putting together.

"We lost a knockout game and I was very sad about that. I can't put that right but I'm very pleased to be back at the highest level with a good football club."

Palace represent Hodgson's fifth Premier League appointment, after Blackburn, Fulham, Liverpool and West Brom.

He will make his bow as Eagles boss in Saturday's Premier League clash with Southampton at Selhurst Park.

He added: "I am very excited to be back in club football and it is a long while since I have enjoyed the day to day sessions of training."

Former Palace caretaker-boss Ray Lewington will again be linked with Hodgson as assistant manager, while a new first-team coach will be announced shortly.

• Northern Ireland international Stuart Dallas was on target for Leeds United last night in a 2-0 home win over Birmingham City.

Samuel Saiz also netted to help fire Leeds to the top of the Championship.

Dallas secured three points for the hosts with a late left-footed strike.

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