A loss to Crystal Palace has given former Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson an opportunity to vent his displeasure with the sport.

Despite falling down early on Saturday at Selhurst Park, Liverpool rallied to win the Premier League match 2-1.

Thanks to Mohamed Salah’s 200th goal for the club and an injury-time strike from replacement Harvey Elliott, the Reds were able to mount a comeback.

After a scoreless first half, Palace took the lead with a penalty kick by Jean-Philippe Mateta. But everything changed when, seconds before Salah scored to level the score, Jordan Ayew was sent off for a second yellow card.

Up until that time, the Eagles had been the superior team.

However, the away side suddenly woke up, scored twice, and the game was done. After the final whistle, booing erupted at Selhurst Park for the second consecutive game.

They had been for the players three days before after a lackluster performance in a 2-0 loss to Bournemouth. However, this time, the whistles were for the referee, whom the home supporters felt had cost them the match.

What did Hodgson say about Premier League referees?

When the match ended, Roy Hodgson—who was already under a lot of strain as a coach—gave a very candid interview with TNT Sports in which he bemoaned the rules and the officials in soccer.

“I’ve been in football a long time, and games like today make me realize that when the day comes to leave it behind, I won’t be missing anything. If you want to describe my mood as disillusioned, you’ve probably chosen the right word. Yes, I’m disillusioned.

“This game was pretty much an amalgam of what the game is these days. You never know going into the game whether you’re going to give a good performance and then the referee is going to give a penalty in the 91st minute.

“Or because of VAR when the ball is adjudged to have hit someone’s hands even though they’re in a natural position. That’s the reality of our situation and it’s the same with the sending-off. Why do we get a sending-off? Because a player couldn’t get away quick enough before the opponent kicked the ball against him so he’s wasting time”, added the Palace boss.

What did Hodgson say about Van Dijk’s part in Ayew’s red card?

The game-changing second yellow card to Ayew allowed Hodgson to criticize Virgil van Dijk of Liverpool for his part in the expulsion: “Van Dijk took the opportunity to get him the first yellow card by kicking the ball against him [while trying to take a quick free‑kick].

“That’s very disappointing for a player of Van Dijk’s quality and status in the game. The second yellow I thought was a good challenge and even if it was deemed a foul it wasn’t a yellow card offence.”

Following Sam Johnstone, Jefferson Lerma, and Odsonne Edouard’s recent injuries, the English manager is facing a selection issue due to Ayew’s ban. To make matters worse, the Selhurst Park outfit has only managed one victory in their past nine games.

“We’re going through a bad spell but I’ve never had any worries about the team. We have to get players fit again and if we’re able to add in January that will be helpful too. But this group will be able to keep this club in the Premier League”, he ended.

Photo credit: IMAGO / Sebastian Frej