Glenn Hoddle was pleased with his sides cup win against Plymouth in the FA Cup 3rd round. As a player Hoddle had many fond adventures in the competition, holding 2 winners, and one runners up medal. Including one from 1980 when Spurs knocked Wolves out at the Semi Final stage. Hoddle scored a free kick in the match that eventually went to a replay with Tottenham running out convincing 3 -0 winners at Highbury.
‘We totally dominated the first-half. I’m delighted we kept a clean sheet and pleased to be into the next round where we will hopefully get one of the big teams at Molineux.’ he told Wolves World after the match.
Mark Davies returned after a lay off recovering from a hernia operation, and Hoddle was quick to acknowledge his contriburion.
‘Davies should have scored . but he was good on the ball – particularly in the first half. He’s only a young man and got lots to learn but he’s got lots to work with.’
Another singled out for praise was under fire striker Leon Clarke. Clarke has come in for harsh critiscism of late, but Hoddle hasn’t chosen to withdraw him from the spotlight.
‘I stuck by Leon and played him today. He worked hard and I’m pleased he got us the winner. The goal will give him confidence.’ he said
The 11,041 fans that turned up, Wolves lowest this season, and lowest for quite a while also witnessed, bang on time, Paul Ince’s full return from rehibilitation.His presence is always guaranteed to galvanise the strength in the team, and the mood of the crowd and is coming back into the side at a critical time.
‘Paul was earmarked to make his first start in this game. He got back into the penalty box (on 90 minutes) to make a great defensive header which just shows his fitness levels.’ said Hoddle
After the match, Tony Pulis was philosophical, accepting that on paper, the result was probably a foregone conclusion.
‘We are at a different level to Wolves. I understand that and I hope the supporters understand it too.’ he said.
But he also pointed out that the history books will show over their 2 quickfire encounters, there was only one goal to seperate the teams.
‘In over three hours of football in the last week Wolves have only beaten us by one goal so I’ve got to take a lot out of that in terms of my players’ character and commitment,’ Pulis noted
He also pointed out that given the two clubs resources, a 1-0 scoreline should not be thought of as a disaster.
‘We’ve come to a club that has thrown on a substitute that cost them £2million and if they don’t get promoted this year they will be devastated and rightly so.’said Pulis.
But the last word falls to Hoddle who will now continue to concentrate his efforts on guiding Wolves to promotion. The performance may not have been pretty, but it got the job done. Hoddle said
‘There are quite a few clubs who would love to swap places with us so I am delighted with the result and pleased with the performance,’