Hodgson: Zamora form has softened the blow of missing out on Crouch

25 December 2009 11:29
Roy Hodgson insists Bobby Zamora's dazzling form has ensured Fulham have noregrets at their failure to sign Peter Crouch.

Crouch completed a £9million transfer from Portsmouth to Tottenham in thesummer after rejecting a move to Craven Cottage.

In the same transfer window Zamora turned down an offer from Hull afterdeciding to fight for his place in west London, and Fulham have benefitedenormously.

Zam the man: Bobby Zamora

The 28-year-old striker scored his 10th goal of the season in Saturday's 3-0drubbing of Manchester United and has been a revelation in recent weeks.

'No I don't wish we had signed Crouch because luckily Bobby Zamora has come uptrumps and has played so well,' said Hodgson.

'Crouch had the chance to join Fulham or Tottenham and he chose them. Thatmeant we were able to keep Bobby. With Bobby playing well it's not somethingwe've missed.

'When Bobby was on his way to Hull, as was being mooted at the time, it wouldhave been much more problematic for us.

'Peter made his decision and we're pleased he's doing well but we've survivedwith the players we have.'

Rejected: Crouch chose Spurs over Fulham

Zamora has thrived under the burden of becoming Fulham's main striker duringthe absence of Andy Johnson through injury.

Outstanding and at times unplayable against United, he will also spearhead theattack against Tottenham on Boxing Day and Chelsea 48 hours later.Fulham relish playing the bigger clubs - they have already beaten Liverpool andUnited this season - and Hodgson hopes capital rivals Spurs will also come acropper.

The match will see the Barclays Premier League's two outstanding Englishcoaches lock horns and Hodgson is full of admiration for his rival.

'I'm pleased to be playing Tottenham on the back of a couple of good resultsagainst Basle and Manchester United because they are in excellent form,' hesaid.

'In fact, they've been in excellent form since Harry Redknapp has been managerthere.

'He rescued them from relegation and it's been upwards ever since. We have anenormous amount of respect for them. They've bought very wisely, signing some excellent players, and have investedvery heavily to have a good season.

'But it's good to be playing at Craven Cottage so soon after the ManchesterUnited game. When you're playing well and winning, the mood is good and it createsconfidence. 

Respect: Harry Redknapp has been impressed by Roy Hodgson's Fulham job

'It can be easily broken by a couple of bad results but we're going into thegame at least hoping to reproduce the performances of the last few weeks.'

Johnson returned from training this week after recovering from the groin injurythat has kept him sidelined since October.The former England marksman is available to play against Spurs but is highlyunlikely to start.

'It hasn't been decided if Andy will play. Clinically he's fit enough,' saidHodgson.

'He hasn't played many games so it would be risky to put him in there.He's physically fit to play and I can select him if I want.'

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Source: Daily_Mail

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