Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson explains Jason Puncheon's situation after summer move to Middlesbrough collapsed
Jason Puncheon remains part of Roy Hodgson's plans at Crystal Palace despite speculation regarding the player's future.
The 32-year-old was linked with a move to Middlesbrough in the summer, when Boro boss Tony Pulis was keen to sign the midfielder who he worked with at Selhurst Park.
Talks took place between the club and the player's representatives but Puncheon decided to stay and fight for his place in South London.
Since then, Puncheon, who signed for Palace back 2013 and has played over 150 games for the club, has barely featured for the Eagles in the league.
He has played regularly in the cup competitions and played the full 90 minutes as Palace lost 1-0 to Boro at the Riverside in the Carabao Cup.
Hodgson was asked about the midfielder's future after the game, and insisted Puncheon still has a future with the Eagles.
"He's played in all of the League Cup games and came on as a substitute (in the league) so he's obviously very much part of our plans," said Hodgson.
However, in most of his recent appearances for Palace, Puncheon has been deployed as a central midfielder - rather than out wide where he operated earlier in his career.
In the middle of the park, Palace already have Cheikhou Kouyate, Luka Milivojevic, James McArthur and Max Meyer, and it appears Puncheon is some way down the pecking order.
With that in mind, Hodgson admitted he wouldn't stand in the player's way if he requested to leave in January.
"Who knows what January is going to bring," said Hodgson. "What offers are going to come our way, what players are going to come and knock on my door and complain about not getting enough football - I'll have to wait and see.
"At the moment Jason Puncheon is very much part of our plans, the way we play and he's very disappointed tonight because in the previous two rounds we've done really well and won and tonight we missed an opportunity by not being able to win this game."