Roy Hodgson argued that his side were not ‘fighting exactly on a level playing field’ after his side lost to 2-0 Manchester City. 

Gabriel Jesus and David Silva scored both goals within 90 seconds of each other late in the second half which tarnished Palace’s admirable record against the Premier League champions. 

Pep Guardiola named a make-shift back four costing more than £150m against Palace with Joao Cancelo, Benjamin Mendy, Rodri and Fernandinho all featured in City’s defence.

“A makeshift back four with two full-backs who have been brought in with great expense to play there, Fernandinho who has been playing centre-back for a period of time and of course Rodri who played centre- back for Atletico Madrid,” Hodgson said.

“A makeshift back four? I don’t know, I think Pep would have been very pleased with that back four and would have expected them to play as well as they did. 

City’s second goal witnessed them capitalise on Palace’s determination to get an equaliser as Mendy broke on the counter before Sterling set up Silvia in the 40thminute. 

“If you take great chances against them and push a lot of players forward they punish you on the counter-attack.

“I don’t know if we could have done a lot more with the players we had to play against them than we did. I am quite proud of the players, despite coming in 2-0 down with two goals in 90 seconds which is always hard to take. 

“The way they went about their business and the way they worked so hard to keep going, and the way they worked so hard to create a few chances which they did at the end. I don’t know If I could have asked the players of any more than what they have given us today. 

“Could have we created more chances? Yeah maybe if we spent 250m and bring some of the best players in Europe into our team then maybe we can. But at the moment we are not fighting on exactly a level playing field, we are playing a team that is full of world class players. 

“That’s why they win the championship and that’s why they are the champions of England at the moment. 

Palace made changes of their own, with Wayne Hennessey replacing Vincente Guatia in goal while Martin Kelly’s position in defence was taken by James Tomkins and Hodgson explained that both changes were a result of injuries. 

“Guaita has been complaining about a slight problem in his groin for a period of time and we thought possibly that he would recover but he didn’t and there was no thought of us taking a risk with him. 

“He was not far off being fit, but when you have got a goalkeeper like Wayne Hennessey who was absolutely outstanding today you do not take that risk. 

“Martin Kelly was in yesterday’s training session, unfortunately, he felt a slight twinge in his groin and with Guatia, I am hoping it won’t be a long term but Tomkins come in and done an outstanding job.”