Roy Hodgson was left to rue the weather conditions in Crystal Palace’s 2-1 FA Cup quarter final defeat to Watford on Saturday, mainly regarding his side’s failure to adapt while the hosts took advantage of the blustery encounter.
In a poor first half showing from the visitors, they fell behind to Etienne Capoue’s 27th minute opener, which came after a succession of corners for the hosts in windy conditions at Vicarage Road.
“It was a close game, once again a game at this stage of the season affected by conditions – the wind was difficult, and you can’t get the ball down on the ground as much,” the 71-year-old said. “At half-time there wasn’t much to say – they had a lot of corners and used the wind to their advantage.”
Palace came out with renewed vigour in the second period and deservedly drew level after Michy Batshuayi pounced on Adrian Mariappa’s mistake 17 minutes after the restart.
However, after failing to capitalise on their second half improvement, substitute Andre Gray landed the killer blow ten minutes from time, as Watford reached Wembley for the second time in just three years. Hodgson was pleased with his side’s second half improvement, but was left to rue the Eagles inability to make their dominance count.
He added: “In the second half we played a lot better, got a deserved equaliser and we were looking like it could be us to get the second goal. But, it was the opposite, a good goal from Gray wins it for Watford.”