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Hodgson looks ahead to 'difficult' Watford FA Cup tie

15 March 2019

Looking ahead to today's FA Cup semi-final clash with Watford, Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson has suggested that though his side have a tough challenge in front of them, they can still be ambitious in the tournament and look to succeed both in the league and cup, with the two not being mutually exclusive.

Asked on how it would feel to win the Cup, Hodgson did allow himself a moment of indulgence, however reinstated the importance of overcoming each hurdle as they come.

He said: "Of course it would be a wonderful thing to do, to win the FA Cup, but there’s a lot to do before we can even hope to achieve that. We’ve got to get through two very difficult games and then we’d face a very tough opponent in the semi-final.

"The final is the stuff of which dreams are made of. We have to confront reality and the present when it comes to the match with Watford knowing full-well if we want to see a dream come true, we’ve got to get through that Watford game."

But, in spite of his pragmatic brand of realism, Hodgson did also suggest that the notion he'll have to pick between league safety and Cup success is not a sensible one, arguing that his Eagles side can and should look to accomplish both.

"I see no reason why we can’t do both," he stated. "Luckily our position in the league - it’s not as good as we’d like - but it’s not precarious at this point in time. There’s no reason why we can’t play on both fronts. Even though it's ridiculously hypothetical, it’s like saying, 'someone has decided you can have one of these two things: walk away with the trophy and play in the Championship next year or you can miss out on the trophy and still be in the league, what do you want?'

"In that, I say I want the latter, to be in the league. What I really want is to be in the [Premier] League holding the trophy next year."

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