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‘I wouldn’t recognise him’: Roy Hodgson yet to meet new Watford boss Rob Edwards

By Jonathan Veal
PA Wire

Outgoing Watford boss Roy Hodgson is willing to talk to his replacement Rob Edwards, but will not be making the first move.

Hodgson is retiring at the end of the season and Edwards has already been named as his successor having guided Forest Green to the League Two title.

The 74-year-old, who admits he would not be able to recognise Edwards, says the appointment makes sense and would offer advice, but only if the new boss wants it.

Asked if he had already spoken to Edwards, Hodgson said: “No. Quite frankly I wouldn’t recognise him, I haven’t seen him.

“He doesn’t need to speak to me, his talking is going to be speaking with Gino Pozzo, that is who he needs to be speaking to.

“If he wants to speak to me I will be more than happy to speak to him but I am not going to impose a conversation on him, but if he wants to speak to me and hear anything I am thinking I am more than happy to speak to him but it would have to be an initiative that comes from him.

“I know who he is and what he has done but I haven’t seen him or be able to recognise him.”

When Edwards take the reins in the summer preparing for life in the Championship, Hodgson will be beginning a second attempt at a life of retirement.

The former England, Liverpool and Fulham boss is adamant that there will be no coming back from this decision.

“There is no doubt this feels worse, partly because the team is relegated but also knowing that this retirement will definitely be the serious retirement and I won’t get tempted back again after this stint,” he said.

“I have to come to terms with that and it is only right that I come to terms with it. It has been a fantastic innings that I have had, an incredibly long career and a very pleasurable one, I have enjoyed every moment of it, it is the right moment.

“Having said that I was out there on the grass today coaching a small group of players and I still realise I still quite like that side of the job, but I will have to ween myself off it.

“It’s dangerous to say never because I am relativity fit and healthy, I am not retiring because I couldn’t do it, it’s not that sort of situation but at the same time, next time I will give myself a stern talking to and say, ‘Even if you think you are capable, it is not the right thing to do’. My CV won’t be floating around various clubs, that’s for certain.”

Hodgson is dealing with a “ridiculous” injury list for his side’s final home game of the season against Leicester, with up to 10 players possibly out.

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