Hodgson happy with team selection

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Football News

Fulham boss Roy Hodgson will be "absolutely amazed" if the Premier League take action against the club in light of his team selection for Sunday's defeat at Everton.

Hodgson made nine changes to his line-up, with eight players rested and one enforced through injury, as he instead focused on arguably the most important game in the club's history on Thursday.

"After the performance we gave, against a very strong Everton team, I would be absolutely amazed if people have the temerity to discuss our team selection," said Hodgson.

"We're going into very dangerous ground when the Premier League decides whether teams are strong or not. Hull made six changes to their team (against Sunderland) because they chose to change six players.

"So I should also be entitled to change players when I want to, especially given the situation we find ourselves in. I am not at all convinced that if the same 11 players who were in Hamburg had played against Everton we would have given as good an account of ourselves as we did."

With the second leg of their Europa League semi-final at home to Hamburg in mind, Paul Konchesky, Aaron Hughes, Danny Murphy, Brede Hangeland, Dickson Etuhu, Damien Duff, Zoltan Gera and Simon Davies were all left at home.

Given the 17-hour journey to Hamburg for last Thursday's goalless first leg due to the chaos caused by an Icelandic volcano, and a trip up to Merseyside sandwiching the two European games, Hodgson's choice was hardly a surprise.

To Fulham's credit, they came within seconds of claiming a point, only to be denied by a contentious penalty from Mikel Arteta with what was virtually the last kick of the game in a 2-1 loss.

The Premier League, though, handed Wolves a suspended £25,000 fine for making 10 changes to their side for a Carling Cup tie against Manchester United in December which they lost 3-0.

Fulham at least have mitigating circumstances, whereas Wolves boss Mick McCarthy simply chose to field a weakened team for a match 75 miles away.

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