Roy Hodgson was delighted with the way his injury-hit Crystal Palace came from a goal behind to earn a point with Arsenal at Selhurst Park yesterday.
Jordan Ayew’s deflected second-half strike secured a 1-1 draw, with both teams having chances to win it late on after the sending-off of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
In his programme notes yesterday Hodgson said the injury situation at Palace was among the worst he had known in his managerial career and praised the character of his side in securing a point against the Gunners.
He said: “It is an excellent point. Also, considering the fact that Arsenal began the game so well and we found it very hard in that opening 25 minutes to get close to them and really exert serious pressure.
"We screened off the balls into Ozil and Lacazette quite well but weren't able to get around to Xhaka and Luiz as we would've liked and they ran the game for 25 minutes, showing a fine array of technical skill.
"But we put that right before half-time, got a lot closer to them, made life a lot more difficult for them and that continued into the second half.
“I certainly think it was a point we thoroughly deserved and I'm full of praise for this team who were once again able to go out there and - in very difficult circumstances - produce a performance against one of the country’s top clubs and get a deserved point.”
Hodgson was insistent not to apportion blame to Aubameyang for the tackle on Max Meyer, but added: (Max is) not happy, that's for sure. I know at the time - he was very close to me - that it was a bad challenge.
"I want to emphasize that I am not accusing Aubameyang of trying to deliberately injure our player, I'm sure he didn't. It's the type of challenge that sometimes, forwards when they're recovering and trying to show the right degree of aggression make.”
"But I saw it after the game and saw the same thing presumably that the people at Stockley Park have seen. It's no doubt it's a red card and no doubt that it's a very bad challenge and I'm a little surprised we had to wait so long for that decision to be taken."
“The position of his ankle as the challenge comes in is not a pleasant thing to see. I'd be very surprised if there isn't some ligament damage there but of course we won't know that until Monday.”