Roy Hodgson believes Crystal Palace and Norwich are proof big-spending does not always guarantee results, although expects life to get tougher over the coming months.
When the Premier League transfer window shut on August 8, the Canaries had only spent £1.1million while the Eagles had splashed out £11million.
This is in contrast to Southampton, Brighton, Newcastle and Aston Villa, who all spent in excess of £50million this summer, but have fewer points than Palace while Norwich are above the latter two.
Hodgson feels there is value in sticking with the squad you have, especially if you have had success like Daniel Farke’s team enjoyed last term when winning the Championship.
“We all know money doesn’t guarantee you any success, it’s just something that excites people towards the end of transfer window to see who has spent the most and who has won the transfer battle,” Hodgson said, ahead of Saturday’s fixture at Selhurst Park.
“You would be hopeful the money you are spending is on good players and good players will make you a better team, but there are no guarantees that will make you better than the team that hasn’t spent much at all.
“There is another aspect to this too where when a team have a wonderful season like Norwich did in the Championship and they have good young players they are introducing into the team, sometimes keeping that team together you get the benefits of all the success.”
He continued: “They know each other, they know exactly how each other plays and they have good players and all of those things can help you, certainly at the start of the season before sometimes the grind sets in.
“Of course that is when real judgement of teams has to be made – 14, 15 or 18 games into the season where the euphoria has passed long ago and it does become once again about the day-to-day work and day-to-day performances.”
Palace will check on the fitness of Mamadou Sakho on the morning of the home game with Norwich, but should have James Tomkins in the squad again.
The former West Ham defender played an hour for the Under-23s against QPR on Monday and Hodgson is delighted to have him fit after he suffered a serious groin injury in April.
“We have been a bit cautious because it was a quite serious muscle injury that he had and we wanted to get that game out of the way so at least he feels he has played some competitive football,” he said.
“He is fully fit and the only thing he lacks is match practise as did Mamadou Sakho when I had to throw him in the deep end at Tottenham.”
Christian Benteke is also expected to feature against Norwich and trained normally the day before the game, with the forward not required to be present at Lavender Hill Magistrates’ Court where his case for two speeding charges was adjourned until November.
At the start of July he pleaded guilty to the two offences, which took place in January and March.
“There are no excuses for it,” Hodgson admitted. “If it happens you can’t justify it in any way and you have to hold your hands up and plead guilty to the charge I guess and hope it is not going to be too draconian in the measures they take against you.”
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