Crystal Palace to fine Eze for coronavirus breach

The Anglo-Nigerian was captured watching his former club lose to Fulham at Loftus Road in a third-round clash on Saturday

Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson disclosed Eberechi Eze will be fined internally but he won’t be dropped from his squad.

After the Eagles were knocked out of the FA Cup by Wolverhampton Wanderers on Friday, Eze went to Loftus Road on Saturday to cheer his former club Queens Park Rangers as they suffered a 2-0 loss against Fulham.

Although he returned with a negative coronavirus test before the match, the FA is set to look into the 22-year-old’s attendance as he was not granted approval to go to the game.

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Hodgson, in his reaction, described the playmaker’s decision as being ‘naïve’ and he expressed the club’s disappointment with his actions.

“It was very disappointing of course,” Hodgson told the club website. “I think it’s a lot of naivety on his part to think it was okay to do those things – it obviously isn’t. We’re very upset about it and a bit disappointed too that he wasn’t actually stopped from going.

“I know QPR have done well in that respect and taken some responsibility because of course had we known, we would have stopped it happening.

“He’s apologised, of course, and he’s certainly learned a harsh lesson from it. We’ll certainly act internally to take measures to make certain it’s a lesson he’s well and truly learned.”

Crystal Palace visit Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium on Thursday and the 73-year-old manager thinks Eze who has contributed two goals and two assists in the Premier League does not deserve to be dropped.

Hodgson added, “Does what Eze did deserve leaving him out? I don’t think so.

“But it does merit a fine. We take this very seriously. We don’t want our players breaching coronavirus regulations.

“I think he did it naively and foolishly, not a determined gesture to break a rule but he did. We’re not happy at all and we show that by fining him.

“I’m not a big fan of that over the years, but on this occasion, I think this error of judgement deserves it and he has to be cautious not to make them again.”

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