'We, the management, decide who the penalty takers are' - Hodgson vents his rage

Christian Benteke was not supposed to take the penalty that he missed in Crystal Palace’s draw with Bournemouth.

Christian Benteke takes a penalty, unsuccessfully, against Bournemouth
Christian Benteke takes a penalty, unsuccessfully, against Bournemouth

CHRISTIAN BENTEKE RISKED the wrath of Roy Hodgson after demanding to take a stoppage-time penalty, only to miss it as Crystal Palace drew 2-2 with Bournemouth to fall back to the foot of the Premier League.

Jermain Defoe’s double, the first taking him to 200 career league goals and the second a stunning narrow strike, sandwiched a Luka Milivojevic penalty and Scott Dann’s goal in a thrilling first half at Selhurst Park.

Palace saw wave after wave break up on last-ditch Bournemouth defending, saves from Asmir Begovic or poor finishing until Charlie Daniels fouled Wilfried Zaha in the second minute of additional time.

Belgium striker Benteke took the ball away from Milivojevic, but his weak effort was easily saved and Hodgson was furious with his player’s decision.

“Benteke got hold of the ball. It was a unilateral decision, no one on our team was able to wrest the ball from him,” Hodgson told BBC Sport.

“We, the management, decide who the penalty takers are and don’t expect players during the course of the game to change those decisions. We’re not on the pitch if it was a training session we could have done something about it but it was a Premier League game and we’re a long way from it.

“We tried to shout out our instructions, they obviously didn’t get as far as the penalty spot.”

Hodgson seemed to be involved in a heated discussion with a home fan after the game, but was quick to clear up the incident.

“It wasn’t an altercation, the guy was only asking a question,” Hodgson said. “He was asking why Benteke had been told to take the penalty. I was telling him he hadn’t.”

Despite falling back to the foot of the table, Hodgson does not expect it to have any lasting impact on his players’ psyche.

He said: “The fact is even if we had come out of the bottom three we’re still very much anchored near the foot of the table.

“We missed an opportunity. I believe we did enough to get the three points, if you miss penalties at home you’ve only got yourself to blame.”

Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe still had a gripe with the awarding of Palace’s second penalty, despite Benteke missing it.

Gavin Cooney
Reports From Qatar

Get Gavin's exclusive writing and analysis from the 2022 Fifa World Cup

Become a Member

He told BBC Sport: “It was an incredible game, real end to end, two teams very attack minded.

“It was on a knife edge, especially in the last 10 minutes but we’re very aggrieved with the last penalty. Charlie’s got the ball and as soon as the referee pointed to the spot you think that’s the game lost.

“I’ve only seen it live and I’m backing my player to tell me the truth and he says he got the ball.”

The42 has just published its first book, Behind The Lines, a collection of some of the year’s best sports stories. Pick up your copy in Eason’s, or order it here today (€10):

Five’s the number of the week as Ronaldo leads Madrid to blistering rout of Sevilla

Benteke demands last-minute peno (and misses), Swansea pick up three big points

About the author:

The42 Team

Read next:


This is YOUR comments community. Stay civil, stay constructive, stay on topic. Please familiarise yourself with our comments policy here before taking part.
write a comment

    Leave a commentcancel