Roy Hodgson extends his support for Rob Holding after criticism during his time at Arsenal whilst also talking about Unai Emery following Arsene Wenger as his Crystal Palace get ready to face Aston Villa.
Hodgson’s recent comments underscore his optimism about the centre-back’s potential contributions to his new team.
When questioned about the negative attention Holding had garnered, Hodgson was quick to dismiss it.
He went on to express his genuine curiosity about whether Holding’s criticism was unduly harsh, suggesting a professional distance from the earlier commotion.
His decision to sign Holding was based on the player’s qualities displayed during his tenure at Arsenal.
Hodgson expressed his expectations candidly: “We chose to sign him because we liked the qualities he showed at Arsenal and hope he brings them to us.”
On another intriguing front, Hodgson is set to meet with Villa’s manager, Unai Emery.
Arsenal fans, of course, remember Emery’s brief tenure with the club, which ended in 2019.
Hodgson shared his perspective on Emery’s departure, hinting at his reservations about the decision taken by the Gunners.
Speaking about Emery’s achievements, Hodgson remarked, “He has won cups with Sevilla and Villarreal but we have a tendency in England to think only English matches count.”
The sentiment highlights a broader issue in the footballing world, where achievements in foreign leagues are often overlooked.
Unai Emery’s tenure at Arsenal was brief but notable. He had taken over the monumental task of succeeding Arsene Wenger, arguably the biggest legend in the annals of Arsenal history.
Emery’s time with the Gunners was a topic of contention among fans and pundits alike. Hodgson reflected on this, saying, “He replaced Arsene Wenger at Arsenal but it was decided by the club and possibly public opinion that this guy might be good at winning things abroad but he is no good in England.
“I never shared that opinion.”
Hodgson’s concluding thoughts on Emery’s exit from Arsenal were contemplative: “I did wonder if Arsenal may regret letting him go so early as he didn’t have an awful lot of time there to make his presence felt.”
They did not.