Roy Hodgson (born 9th August 1947) is an English football manager and former player, currently managing Premier League club Crystal Palace. Hodgson was born in Croydon, Surrey. His mother was a baker in the town, and his father, Bill, a Newcastle United fan, worked as a bus driver south of the River Thames. Hodgson's family lived in the same building as Steve Kember, one of Hodgson's schoolmates at John Ruskin Grammar School. The two played on the school football team, a side which also included Lennie Lawrence and Bob Houghton, who would go on to play a prominent part in Hodgson's career, joined the school in the sixth form.
Hodgson was a moderately successful youth player with Crystal Palace, but was never able to break into the first team. After leaving Crystal Palace he played non-League football for several years with Tonbridge and Gravesend & Northfleet. At the age of 23, he completed training to become a fully qualified coach. He then joined Maidstone United, where he played and also served as assistant manager to Bob Houghton.
In 1972, after a year at Maidstone, he moved to Ashford Town (Kent), while also working as a PE teacher at Alleyn's School in south London. The following year, he moved to Pretoria, South Africa to play for Berea Park, despite the sporting boycott of South Africa in effect at the time. In 1974 Hodgson returned to England for his final playing spell, joining Carshalton Athletic. Again he supported himself by teaching, this time at Monks Hill Comprehensive. later renamed to The Quest Academy.
Hodgson has managed sixteen different teams in eight countries, beginning in Sweden with Halmstads BK in the 1976 season. He later guided the Switzerland national team to the last 16 of the 1994 World Cup and qualification for Euro 1996; Switzerland had not qualified for a major tournament since the 1960s. From 2006 to 2007, he managed the Finland national team, guiding them to their highest-ever FIFA ranking of 33rd place and coming close to qualifying for a major tournament for the first time in their history. He managed the England national team from May 2012 to June 2016. Other clubs that Hodgson has managed include Inter Milan, Blackburn Rovers, Malmö FF, Grasshoppers, FC Copenhagen, Udinese, Fulham, Liverpool and West Bromwich Albion.
Hodgson served several times as a member of UEFA's technical study group at the European Championships and was also a member of the FIFA technical study group at the 2006 World Cup. Hodgson has worked as a television pundit in several of the countries in which he has coached
Hodgson is married to wife Sheila, and together they have a son, Christopher. Hodgson is known to be a fan of the authors Sebastian Faulks, John Updike, Philip Roth and Saul Bellow. Hodgson is multilingual: In addition to his native English, he speaks fluent Norwegian, Swedish, German and Italian, as well as some Danish, French and Finnish.
Hodgson was made a Knight, First Class, of the Order of the Lion of Finland in September 2012. He received an Honorary Doctorate from the University of York on 22 January 2016. The honaris causa degree was conferred upon Roy Hodgson by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor of the university