Roy Hodgson spoke in his weekly press conference earlier in the week to preview Crystal Palace's home clash with Manchester City, seeming like a positive figure in the face of one of the league's most demanding tests.
He spoke at length on the prowess of Pep Guardiola's side but also explained how his Eagles side managed to overcome them back in December, crediting hard work and clinical use of possession.
Beginning his press conference, he assessed the opposition, saying: "No team is unbeatable. No team poses a threat you couldn’t possibly deal with but everyone understands what a good side they are and their attacking talents. They’re one of the best teams in my opinion in and around the penalty area. It’s a big task but we’ll do our best. We kept a clean sheet against them a year ago here so why can’t we do it again?
"It was a good performance in the week against Spurs from both teams. It’s quite a proud moment when you’re in the Premier League and realise this is the level of football you’re involved in yourself. Not quite the heights they’re reaching but in the ballpark. You can’t just judge performances on the fact they didn’t win the game."
And with Hodgson being one of the few men in the league to be able to speak with authority on how to approach and ultimately defeat Manchester City, he offered some insight into what it was that allowed his side to take three points from the fortress that is the Etihad Stadium.
He said: "It took a lot of hard work. I thought the players were unbelievably disciplined. They worked very hard to fulfil the tactics we had going into the game. On top of that we were able to use the relatively few chances we created ourselves, one of which was a wonder-goal. It was a great occasion and a great victory for the club. I just hope we haven’t angered them so much they try to punish us for having the temerity for beating them on home turf!
"I think the only way you’re only getting a result against them is first of all if your defence is in unbelievable form and your players are willing to work harder than perhaps they ever have on the field before. The major formula if you like for winning the game is you know you’re not going to have the ball as much as they are, you’ve got make certain that when you get your chance you take it which is pretty much what happened at Man City.
"I can’t come off there saying we beat Man City 3-2 because we outplayed them from the first minute. I like playing at home and the atmosphere and the support we get from the crowd but it doesn’t alter the fact that we’re playing one of the best teams in Europe, let alone the Premier League."
READ NEXT: Injury update: James Tomkins.