Crystal Palace boss Roy Hodgson sung the praises of young defender Tyrick Mitchell as he scored the winner in his side’s 3-2 win over Aston Villa.
The 21-year-old left-back scored an 84th minute winner that lifted Palace into 13th in the Premier League, and Hodgson thought the result reflected his team’s qualities.
Speaking to Sky Sports, he said: "I thought we got back to the best of what we have been in the last few years in the second half. We were aggressive and hard-working. We chased balls down and gave them much less time.
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"Our start was slow and they were looking quite comfortable so I put it down to the pure desire and pure professionalism. We came back from behind but I thought we were very good value for our three goals as there were other opportunities.
"The message that we gave them at half time was that we felt we were getting back into the game before messing it up. We really believed if we kept up the progress we were making at the end of the first half then with more determination, aggression and desire.
"It would have been a fantastic second half had [the fans] been here today! We need to enjoy this victory then have a couple of days to make sure we are in the right frame of mind from the start against Arsenal. We have a number of our fans back and we want to show them it's been a very good season for the football club and there's lots of good times to come."
The former England manager noted that Mitchell was given a round of applause from his senior teammates in the dressing room.
"Tyrick Mitchell got a round of applause when he walked into the room,” Hodgson said.
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That is something more deserving than that. His performance today was outstanding in every respect. To get an assist and the winner against a team of Aston Villa's quality - happy days for him.
"We had Aaron Wan-Bissaka break through and do well for us and now we have Tyrick Mitchell. He has got in the team before and had to drop out through injury. What he needs now is an injury-free period but he has all the qualities I think needed to be a very good Premier League left-back.
"It's delightful to welcome [James Tomkins] back. His injury is such an unfortunate one. At least he will be in contention for the last two games of the season."
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