Ahead of the club’s confirmation of its participation in the Queensland Champions Cup for its pre-season tour in Australia, Roy Hodgson spoke with Palace TV to express his opinion on the team’s trip to the southern hemisphere.
“It’s something we’ll look forward to,” he said. “It’s an opportunity for the club to mark itself in an area of the world I think we probably are known because of our previous captains in [Tony] Popovic and [Mile] Jedinak, but they [Australian fans] won’t have had the chance to really see the team play close up. This is an ideal opportunity for them to do that.”
Turning his attention to the benefits of a pre-season tour and the personnel he may be able to call upon, Hodgson said: “I hope we’ll be able to get the bulk of the players that we’re working with at the moment to go over there with us and if we can do that of course it’ll be very useful.
“Those early couple of weeks set a bit of a tone for the rest of your pre-season preparation and it’ll be interesting for the players to do it in a different environment. We’re pretty used to our environment here, we like it; it’s a good environment, the training fields are fantastic, but it’s quite nice sometimes to go somewhere you’ve not been before and to experience new things.
“I remember the first time I went to Australia was an exciting prospect because we’re talking about a very, very interesting country, especially from the sporting point of view.
“I think the players, especially the ones that haven’t been there, will really enjoy the experience of seeing Australia at first hand and being able to immerse themselves a little bit in Australian culture, which I’m sure they’ll know a lot about from watching films and television. But to actually be there is another matter. It’ll be an experience for everybody.”
And finally, drawing upon his time advising Melbourne City in 2017, Hodgson outlined his experience working in Australia and explained what his role there was.
“It was a consultancy role I suppose, or a mentoring role. The club had a very good young coach [Michael Valkanis] but he hadn’t had a lot of experience and they were going into a play-off situation.
“They just thought... maybe having someone with more experience, to ask questions of, lean against, discuss all matters in football, they asked if I would go over and spend some time as long as the play-offs lasted.
“I was over for about three or four weeks before they got knocked out and it was a very good experience, but my role really was a role on the sidelines. I only did one coaching session when I was there and that was a demonstration session with the Melbourne City Academy team for the coaches at the club. I didn’t do any work at all with the first team.”
You can watch the full Roy Hodgson interview regarding the 2020 summer below!