Football: Hodgson challenges Batshuayi to step up in Premier League

Football: Hodgson challenges Batshuayi to step up in Premier League

Premier League - Crystal Palace v Burnley
Crystal Palace's Michy Batshuayi on Feb 13, 2021. (Photo: Reuters/John Walton)

LONDON: Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson said on-loan striker Michy Batshuayi should score in the Premier League if he wants to prove a point, not in an international mismatch between Belgium and Belarus.

Batshuayi, who is on loan at Palace from Chelsea, scored the opener for Belgium as they hammered Belarus 8-0 in a World Cup qualifier last week and told reporters that playing for the national team was a breath of fresh air.

The forward has made only 16 league appearances this season and Hodgson said that while he can understand why players might vent their frustrations on international duty they should try to be "a little bit careful" with what they say.

"Because playing 60 minutes against Belarus and scoring one of eight goals is not quite the same as if he comes on against Everton and helps them to a 3-0 win by scoring a couple," said Hodgson.

"I'd put that in a different league in terms of achievement. Without wishing to denigrate them in any way, the quality of a Belgian team against a Belarus team is not like two Premier League teams playing together."

Palace, who are 12th in the league, travel to Everton later on Monday (Apr 5).

Source: Reuters