Author Topic: Sunday Fulham Stuff - 21/02/21...  (Read 671 times)

Offline whitejc

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Re: Sunday Fulham Stuff - 21/02/21...
« Reply #20 on: February 21, 2021, 10:23:17 AM »
Every word emotional Scott Parker said on Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Harrison Reed & catching Newcastle


Scott Parker, Manager of Fulham celebrates his side's victory after the Premier League match between Fulham and Sheffield United (Image: Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)

You looked emotional at the end, how are you feeling after that?

Yeah, I'm very proud of the team. Really proud in terms of what I asked from them tonight, what I've asked from them this week to be honest with you. It's been a tough week in erms of the games we've had to play, the travel we've had to do. I think we all udnerstood tonight what this game was and what it was about. Very proud.

The message before the game was 'lets focus on us, let's not listen to the noise that has been created around this game because this year there has been one sole focus and that is us'. That's been my constant message and I know with that, showing our qualities, playing with freedom, we'll get results.

Seven points in the last week, that is a team fighting for their lives isn't it?

Yeah, there is not one question in me in terms of what you see there. As a group players, and I include players who aren't involved or starting at the moment - this squad, this group I see every day, and you see them on a Saturday, this group of players are honest, want to learn, want to get better and understand the challenge of this league.

What you need in these moments and in top teams - you have people who are constant Monday-Friday who want to get better and I think that's what you're seeing out there. This team has constant belief, a confident team and that's what we need t continue.

Do you feel like you're on the coattails of Newcastle and Brighton now?

I'll be honest with you, I'm not really looking who is above us or who is around us. All I am focused on is us and what we need to do. We need to keep coming in and we need to keep showing what we've shown or large parts. This team has been so competitive and if you watch our games over the last 15 or 16 the fine margins probably are we got some results that should have been draws or that should have been wins.

While at this present moment at time my focus is on us and us improving and keeping getting better, when the curtain comes down at the end of the season we'll have either been good enough to stay in this devision or not. Main message to this group of players is let's keep fighting and let's keep improving.

How happy were you with the performances of Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Harrison Reed?

They were both exceptional really and I thought everyone today involved was excellent. But the two players you highlight were immense really. Ruben, we all understand his quality, certainly I do. Obviously Harrison has been pivotal in what we did alst year and this season.

Two players that are young, two players in Harrison and even Ruben to a certain extent who have not had a lot of football at this level but they're taking it very well.

What does the win show about the players' ability to handle pressure?

I think that was a massive plus because the pressure was on. It was a result game tonight and performance second but we got both. There was that pressure on it but throughout this year that pressure has been there in many different ways whether there have been question marks around whether the team is good enough for the level or if you can win games instead of drawing them. Throughout that pressure they've managed to come out of it at times. It was a big win.

What did you make about Joachim Andersen's performance and importance of his distribution?

He's been vital in the way we want to play, the style of the way we want to play it's key that you need ball playing defenders - we've got that in all our defenders really. He's been immense since walking in the building, a top player that has been pivotal to what we've done and his distribution, his assist for the goal was first class as well.



https://www.football.london/fulham-fc/fulham-sheffield-united-premier-league-19882170

Offline whitejc

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Re: Sunday Fulham Stuff - 21/02/21...
« Reply #21 on: February 21, 2021, 10:26:09 AM »
Sheffield United boss Chris Wilder left exasperated after Alphonse Areola's 'reckless' challenge on Jayden Bogle did not result in a penalty in Fulham loss... as he concedes top flight 'won't have to put up with us much longer'

    Chris Wilder slammed the refereeing decisions that have gone against his team
    The Sheffield United boss thought they should have had a penalty at Fulham
    Alphonse Areola collided with Jayden Bogle in a painful tackle for the defender
    The Blades suffered another defeat and took a step closer to relegation
    Wilder said the Premier League 'wont have to put up with us much longer'

Chris Wilder bemoaned decisions going against Sheffield United but said the Premier League 'won't have to put up with us much longer' after the rock-bottom Blades' 1-0 defeat to Fulham at Craven Cottage.

Ademola Lookman broke the deadlock for the Cottagers in the 61st minute, with the home side going on to secure only their fourth win of the season.

United had a penalty shout in the final minutes of the game when home goalkeeper Alphonse Areola dived out to deny Jayden Bogle.


Chris Wilder bemoaned refereeing decisions going against Sheffield United this season
 

 The Blades boss thought his team should have had a penalty for Alphonse Areola's tackle on Jayden Bogle


The goalkeeper put his body on the line and just managed to get a touch on the ball before the collision, and nothing was given but Wilder did not agree with referee Martin Atkinson or the VAR.

He said: 'Where are these decisions coming from? I'm just not getting it. I'm not getting that as well because we had John Lundstram sent off (against Brighton in December), reckless.

'People talk about out of control and reckless, I'm not sure that goalkeeper was in control and knew everything about that challenge. Whether it's committed, whether it's desire, whether it's brave, it is reckless, no control.
 

Wilder thought the goalkeeper's challenge was reckless and could have hurt his player

'(I'm) delighted that my young, right wing-back, who's going to be a player, getting used to the Premier League is back on the coach with us tonight, and not somewhere else, delighted, because he could quite easily be...without even talking about whether it's a penalty or not, or us getting that penalty and obviously us sticking that penalty away because the skipper is decent on spot-kicks and us trying to win a game of football.

'Obviously covered that point, I don't know if there's anything else to say, we've just got a long list of decisions that have gone against it, we had one that went over the line (last season) that still aggravates me and maybe I'm sure that I didn't cause enough of a fuss but they won't have to put up with us much longer.

'But there'll be another promoted team that maybe comes into the division and will get the rubbish decisions, poor decisions that we are on the end of.'

Scott Parker's men went into the game six points adrift of Newcastle in 17th but have closed the gap to just three ahead of the Magpies' trip to Manchester United on Sunday.

They also recorded only their second home victory of the season, with the first coming in November, to the delight of the manager.

'I'm very proud of the team in terms of what I asked them tonight and what I've asked them this week to be quite honest with you,' Parker said.
 

Fulham managed to get their first home win since November to close the gap at the bottom

'It's been a tough week in terms of the games we've had to play, the travel we've had to do and I think we all understood tonight what this game was and what it was about.

'I'm very proud that the message to the team before the game was us, let's focus on us, let's not listen to the noise that's been created around this game, because throughout this year there's been one sole focus and that's been us. That's been my constant message.

'I know with that, and us showing our quality and our freedom we'll get results really and I think that was proven tonight.'



https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-9282713/Sheffield-United-boss-Chris-Wilder-angry-Alphonse-Areolas-reckless-tackle-Jayden-Bogle.html

Offline whitejc

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Re: Sunday Fulham Stuff - 21/02/21...
« Reply #22 on: February 21, 2021, 10:27:06 AM »
From a Newcastle United fan to Fulham manager Scott Parker: Thank you!

Okay, let’s address the elephant in the room from the start. The majority of you, if not all of you, came to this article with a confused look on your face after reading the selected title. No, this is not click-bait. This article is a real thank you to Fulham’s manager, Scott Parker, but here is the logic behind all this.

With Fulham’s victory over Sheffield United yesterday, the promoted side are within three points of reaching and leapfrogging Newcastle United in the table. Newcastle United have blown a ten-point lead over their relegation rivals, and the crisis will only deepen with an expected loss against Manchester United later today.

The fans have placed Steve Bruce in the hot seat for months now, but Mike Ashley and his executives have stood by their man. According to several reports out of Tyneside over the last couple of weeks, Bruce’s job would only be in jeopardy if the Magpies were to fall into the bottom three.

That could very well happen over the next week if Newcastle United lose today, lose against Wolverhampton on the 27th of this month, and Fulham claim three points against Crystal Palace on February 28th.

Scott Parker’s resurgence with Fulham could lead to Steve Bruce’s departure from Newcastle United.
The pressure is on Newcastle United like never before since earning promotion back to the Premier League after the 2016-17 Championship campaign. A third relegation under the ownership of Mike Ashley?

As neglectful as the business tycoon has been since his takeover, one must believe that he will part ways with Bruce as soon as his men slip to 18th, although that decision should have been made before the team fell into this situation.

With Graeme Jones on hand, he is the only member of the coaching staff the players listen to and give their all for on the pitch. Whether or not he is a long-term solution for the managerial position at Newcastle United remains to be seen, but Parker and his Fulham squad have certainly placed the pressure of the world on Bruce’s shoulders.

I have utilized this platform several times to call for Bruce’s sacking, and everyone knows he should have been relieved of his duties after the embarrassing defeat to Sheffield United. Unless a miracle happens and the Toon manage to impress and take points from their next three opponents, I think we can all thank Parker for Bruce’s departure.

In my eyes, it is a matter of “when” for Steve Bruce, not “if”. Yesterday’s result that favored Fulham makes today’s trip to Old Trafford all the more critical and difficult for Newcastle United. Kick off is scheduled for 19:00.



https://newcastletoons.com/2021/02/21/newcastle-fan-fulham-manager-scott-parker-thank-you/


Offline whitejc

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Re: Sunday Fulham Stuff - 21/02/21...
« Reply #23 on: February 21, 2021, 10:28:16 AM »
Graeme Souness' astonishing outburst on referees as Sheffield United denied Jayden Bogle penalty

Sheffield United were denied a late penalty in their 1-0 defeat at Fulham and Graeme Souness launched a stinging attack on referees in this country as a result

Graeme Souness questioned the standard of officiating in the Premier League after Sheffield United were denied a stonewall penalty in the dying stages of their 1-0 defeat at Fulham.

Jayden Bogle was upended by Alphonse Areola with United looking to find a late leveller at Craven Cottage but neither referee Martin Atkinson nor the VAR deemed the challenge worthy of a penalty.

It prompted an angry outburst from Souness, who claimed the referees in this country are not up to scratch and suggested Areola's tackle was an 'assault' on Blades full-back Bogle.

"If that challenge, I'm reluctant to call it a tackle, if that challenge happens anywhere else on the football pitch, it 's a sending-off! Not just a penalty, it's a sending-off," he said.

"I just don't get referees.

"They make it up as they go along, referees, they really do. What planet are they on?

"The problem we have with referees is they're just not very good, the last World Cup how many English referees did we have? None. That's how good our referees are.

"That is an assault. I'm not saying he has gone deliberately to hurt him but that is a foul all day long, it's a penalty all day long and for me, it's a sending-off.

"They really do make it up as they go along. When I played it was 'i's okay, you've got the ball first and then his momentum takes the player out', today it's he got the ball first but the momentum then injured the player so it's a foul.

"That is what you are describing there, that is a penalty seven days a week and I just don't know where they get these referees from.

"We saw one in the first game [Liverpool vs Everton] with [Dominic] Calvert-Lewin, for me that's not a penalty on Trent Alexander[-Arnold], he has fallen over before he gets to Trent Alexander[-Arnold]. It's not a penalty and that is definitely a penalty.

"100%, all day long. I can't back Chris Wilder up any more, that is a penalty all day long. It's a ridiculous decision by another very, very poor referee."

The failure to award a penalty only served to compound the Blades' misery after Ademola Lookman's second-half strike put United's relegation rivals ahead at Craven Cottage and a 20th defeat of the season leaves Chris Wilder's side with a near-impossible task to preserve their top-flight status.

But Souness believes the Blades boss will rightfully be frustrated by the failure to come away from the game with nothing to show for it as he doubled down on his criticism of the officials.

"Look how high he is, he came out and said it was a 50-50 challenge, but he's endangering the opposition," Souness added.

"The quicker we get a different setup for referees and get some ex-players into the game... because we're in great danger of killing the Premier League with these referees and the Premier League has the power to come up with a different way with the referees.

"Ex-players should be involved in our game, they've had their chance, our referees are so poor. So poor.

"There are lots of ex-players who would like to referee.

"Ones who have finished with injury, not everyone plays in the Premier League and earns serious money.

"Get some ex-pros trained up and you won't have incidents like that where managers are tearing their hair out all the way back from Sheffield."



https://www.examinerlive.co.uk/sport/football/news/souness-sheffield-united-bogle-areola-19882251

Offline whitejc

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Re: Sunday Fulham Stuff - 21/02/21...
« Reply #24 on: February 21, 2021, 10:29:40 AM »
Andersen ‘buzzing’ after big win

Centre back Joachim Andersen was delighted after Fulham recorded a massive win by beating bottom-of-the-table Sheffield United at Craven Cottage last night.

The Whites moved to within three points of safety after Ademola Lookman’s second half strike sunk the Blades. The Danish defender felt Fulham’s recent improved performances fully merited a return of seven points in a week, which has breathed new life into Fulham’s bid to beat the drop.

Andersen told FulhamFCTV after the final whistle:

“When we came into the dressing room, everyone was buzzing and, like you said, it’s been a fantastic week and something we’ve been waiting for and something we deserved because we played so well in the last months and we didn’t get the results we wanted. This week, we are getting there and we’re getting seven points out of nine and that’s really positive and we just have to continue now.

He was delighted with another composed defensive showing that left goalkeeper Alphonse Areola almost a spectator until his late, vital intervention at the feet of Jayden Bogle.

“We spoke about how it was going to be a little bit the same game like Burnley. They also want to play long balls to McBurnie and I think we dealt with that really, really well – also against Burnley we did well. A clean sheet is always good – but to be fair, I just want to win, I don’t care about the clean sheet now! Of course, a clean sheet helps the team and if we can have a clean sheet and a win that’s always good.”

Andersen said that Fulham upped the intensity after the break having dominated the first half but failed to convert a number of presentable chances that had come their way.

“We spoke in the half-time [interval] about that. We were doing really well but we needed more people in the box because we need to have four or five players in there because it’s more difficult for defenders. I know that as a defender – it’s more difficult with bodies around you – and I think we did that better in the second half and we had some big, big chances to make it two or three nil. We have to do that better. We still have to finish our chances and that’s something we are working on.”

He denied that Scott Parker’s side had switched to a more direct approach after the interval, insisting that Fulham had always intended to try and play balls behind the Blades’ backline. It was Andersen’s own superb pass that unlocked the Sheffield United defence for Lookman’s winner.

“That was something we spoke about already before the game. There was no difference from the first half to the second half in the way we were playing with the ball. I think maybe there were a little bit tired and there was more space. Also, for the goal with Ade there was more space in behind. You know if you can get Ade or some of the other offensive goes one on one things are going to happen and luckily we scored.”

Andersen is targeting another three points at Selhurst Park against Crystal Palace next week as the Whites look to pile more pressure on the teams directly above them in the table.

“Again, a game we need to win. A game we can win. I think Crystal Palace is a team that suits us; we just have to play our game. Like I said, we’ve been doing so well for months now and we just missed the small things. It seems that things are coming our way now. I hope we can build on that and continue.”



https://hammyend.com/index.php/2021/02/andersen-buzzing-after-big-win/

Offline whitejc

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Re: Sunday Fulham Stuff - 21/02/21...
« Reply #25 on: February 21, 2021, 10:30:20 AM »
Super Eagles Legend In Attendance At Craven Cottage As Lookman Nets Fulham's Winning Goal

1994 Africa Cup of Nations-winning striker Efan Ekoku was in attendance at Craven Cottage on Saturday night as Ademola Lookman enhanced his growing reputation by scoring the game-winning goal for Fulham in a 1-0 win over Sheffield United.

Ekoku, who usually works as a commentator for Premier League Productions, was on commentary duties for the domestic audience for the game in southwest London.

Manager Scott Parker picked four Nigerian players Tosin Adarabioyo, Ademola Lookman, Ola Aina and Josh Maja in his starting lineup and a fifth Josh Onomah was a non-playing substitute.

Fulham were the better team in the first half but didn't have the real creativity in the final third to test the Blades goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale.

Two-goal hero against Everton, Maja was very quiet in the first part of the game but it was down to poor service.

The big moment came in the 61st minute when Lookman cut inside and drilled a shot into the back of the net for his fourth goal in Fulham colours.

Aina tried his luck with a dipping drive which was saved by the Sheffield United goalkeeper in the 73rd minute.

Following the win, Fulham are now three points from safety before the London derby against Eberechi Eze's Crystal Palace next Sunday.

Ifeanyi Emmanuel



https://www.allnigeriasoccer.com/read_news.php?nid=39027


Offline whitejc

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Re: Sunday Fulham Stuff - 21/02/21...
« Reply #26 on: February 21, 2021, 10:30:47 AM »
Andersen anchors Fulham’s survival surge

Fulham have had an awful lot of loanees lately, but it is hard to recall one who’s slotted in as seamlessly as Joachim Andersen. The Danish defender is more than just the critical piece in Scott Parker’s revamped rearguard – he’s a leader of serious stature as well. Vocal on the field, a calm and composed communicator who reads the game impeccably, Andersen’s importance to Fulham’s relegation battle was underlined by the fact he was handed the captain’s armband just four games into his Craven Cottage career and he has grown gradually in importance ever since.

Andersen’s partnership with Tosin Adarabioyo has blossomed into one of the league’s most successful. Before the pair arrived at Craven Cottage, Fulham had conceded eleven goals in four fixtures and looked like a basket case at the back. Oppositions were rampaging through a shambolic defence at will and relegation appeared a foregone conclusion. The task in front of Andersen and Adarabioyo – neither of whom had played a single Premier League minute – was considerable and yet they provided a reassuring sense of security from the outset, with the Whites grabbing their first point of the season straightaway at Sheffield United and a clean sheet against West Brom in their very next outing.

The dramatic metamorphosis to a more parsimonious presence at the back has continued over a longer period. Undoubtedly helped by Parker’s switch to a five at the back, Fulham have conceded just seventeen goals in the nineteen league games that Andersen has played in – with seven clean sheets. The latest of which, in the home win over bottom of the table Sheffield United, might prove to be the most crucial – lifting the Whites just three points away from safety. Adarabioyo leads the list of Premier League defenders for number of clearances, whilst Andersen himself is sixth. The Dane is second in the Premier League in terms of aerial duels won and tops the charts for number of interceptions in his own penalty area.

Andersen’s primary responsibility remains keeping the ball out of the net, something he has proven remarkably adept at, but his contribution to Fulham’s resurgence is far greater than mere defensive reassurance. In many ways, he’s the perfect fit for Parker’s own footballing philosophy. Comfortable with the ball at his feet, Andersen will regularly raid forward himself – he did it twice to great effect against the Blades – and frequently unlocks opposition rearguards with raking passes. One such marvellous through ball proved the difference last night, releasing Ademola Lookman into the inside left channel for the winning goal, but just as important have been his precise passes to find midfielders in space at the start of several Fulham moves. He was successful with 94 of them last night as Fulham passed the Blades into submission and rarely wasted a ball.

You sense the 24 year-old’s impact off the field has been just as transformational for Fulham’s fortunes. One of the greatest contrast between this team and the two that have been relegated from the top flight in the past seven years has been their resilience. Even when the situation seemed bleak, this side haven’t wilted. Much of that has to be down to the character of the individuals involved. Andersen, an organiser at every defensive set play, has impressed with his intelligence, professionalism and winning attitude which has clearly transmitted to his team-mates. In a relegation battle, these characteristics can represent the difference between success and failure. There’s simply no understating Andersen’s influence.



https://hammyend.com/index.php/2021/02/andersen-anchors-fulhams-survival-surge/

Offline whitejc

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Re: Sunday Fulham Stuff - 21/02/21...
« Reply #27 on: February 21, 2021, 10:32:57 AM »

BBC Sport comments from neutrals about Newcastle relegation fight after Fulham win


Really interesting reading through these BBC Sport comments following Fulham’s Saturday night win over Sheffield United.

Only seven days ago, Steve Bruce’s Newcastle United had a ten point advantage over Scott Parker’s Fulham.

Now that gap is only three points and Fulham have a better goal difference.

In their last 14 Premier League games, Fulham have only lost three times and only to top four clubs – Chelsea, Man Utd and Leicester. With two wins and nine draws, picking up 15 points from these 14 PL matches, only conceding 11 goals in the process.

For Newcastle United, the last 15 matches (all competitions) have brought 11 defeats and only two wins, plus two draws, conceding a massive 27 goals in the process. The last ten games seeing Bruce’s NUFC team concede two or more goals on eight occasions.

The comments from neutrals on BBC Sport especially telling when it comes to how they see this relegation battle playing  out, with it increasingly looking like a straight battle between Fulham and Newcastle United for that final spot in the bottom three.

A club that neutrals are divided on, whether to sympathise with, or laugh at, this never ending nothingness of supporting Newcastle United year after year.

The BBC Sport readers comments, mainly from neutrals, tells us much about Steve Bruce and Newcastle United at the moment.

‘Hopefully this marks the beginning of the end for woeful Newcastle.’

‘As a Manchester United fan, I hope we thrash Newcastle to give Fulham a helping hand. Great guy as a manager.’

‘Looks like it’s a straight race between Fulham and Newcastle.

My money’s on the toon for the drop.’

‘West Brom, Sheffield Utd down, Fulham alive & kicking! Newcastle beware…’

‘Last game of the season is Fulham v Newcastle!’

‘Hope Fulham stay up as they are easy on the eye and TRY TO PLAY decent football as opposed to much of the rubbish at the bottom end of the table.’

‘It’s okay fellow Newcastle fans, the media have been telling us for months we’re lucky to have Bruce. What do we expect?…’

‘Fulham look like staying up.’

‘Fulham will stay up if they continue to play football and be offensive.’

‘Squeak, squeak, squeak…

The sound of Geordie sphincters everywhere.

I hope Fulham stay up. Fans should be back next season and it’s cracking away day.’

‘Newcastle are in trouble!’

‘Watch out Bruce, Fulham’s coming for ya.’

‘Well done Fulham from a Wolves fan. You are on a roll. Hope you stay up. Always a great away day.’

‘Fulham have a gem in Scott Parker. You can see the positive changes through his coaching and onto the pitch. I really think they will stay up and finish mid-table next season.’

‘Newcastle won’t be happy this evening.

I can see Fulham staying up and unfortunately Newcastle going down.

Fulham are getting better and only lost 1 more than Arsenal. They’ve only lost 4 more than Liverpool too!’

‘We are after you Geordies!!! Watch out!!!’

‘Most Blades have accepted for a while now that its going to be Championship football next season, injurys and poor finishing have been a constant problem. Good luck for the rest of the season Fulham, hope you can topple Newcastle.’

‘I predict Fulham to stay up and Newcastle to go down. Scott Parker has a determined look and a good strong jaw. Steve Bruce has the face of a loser.’

(Villa fan) ‘Would love for Fulham to get above Newcastle and send them down

‘Great result Fulham. I’ve said it since Bruce took over that he’d only take NUFC one way. He’s a fraud of a manager.’

‘Well played Fulham.

With their last game being at home v Newcastle the last relegation spot could well go to the wire.

Newcastle fans should be worried.’

‘Newcastle have Sheffield Utd and Fulham as their last two games.

Winning those will be enough to stay up.’

‘I feel there’s the making of a good side in Fulham with a good progressive manager, quite the polar opposite of Newcastle at the moment.’

‘Nervous times for Newcastle.’

‘I am a Newcastle fan and I am not nervous, I couldn’t care less, I always said we were lucky to still be this far ahead of Fulham considering how we have played of late, but yes we will drop, we have the perfect duo Ashley and Bruce.’

‘Fulham’s defence is really quite strong for a team in the relegation zone, their goal difference is healthy and they’re hitting form – Brighton and Newcastle will be nervous, maybe Burnley too.

I’d like to see Fulham stay up, they play some nice football. Newcastle on the other hand have a team filled with good players, but play turgid football.’

‘Fulham staying up and reeling in the toon army.’



https://www.themag.co.uk/2021/02/bbc-sport-comments-from-neutrals-about-newcastle-relegation-fight-after-fulham-win-newcastle-united/

Offline whitejc

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Re: Sunday Fulham Stuff - 21/02/21...
« Reply #28 on: February 21, 2021, 10:33:28 AM »
Parker full of praise for way his players coped with pressure to beat the Blades

Scott Parker hailed his team's ability to cope with the pressure of Saturday night's must-win clash with Sheffield United as they came away with only a fourth win of the campaign.

Ademola Lookman's goal on the hour was enough to get the better of the rock-bottom Blades and it brings the Whites to within three points on Newcastle, and safety after a mini run of seven points from three games.

It was a game Fulham knew they simply had to win and, though it was far from pretty, they had the character to get over the line.

"I'm very proud of the team. Proud in terms of what I asked them tonight, because pressure was on," said the Fulham boss.

"It was a result game tonight, with performance second.

"Throughout the year that pressure has been there in many different ways - the question marks over whether this team is good enough for this level and can you win games instead of drawing them.

Throughout that pressure they've managed to come out of it. It was a big one."

Parker continued: "It's been a tough week in terms of the games we've had to play - the travel we had to do and I think we all understood tonight what this game was about.

"The focus before the start was on us. Let's not listen to the noise created around this game.

We've shown that with our quality, playing with a freedom, we'll get results and I think that was proven tonight.

"There is not one question from me about what you see there in a group of players - including the ones who are not involved. This group of players is honest, want to learn, want to get better, understand the challenge of this league and what it brings sometimes.

"What you need in this moment - in top teams - is people who are constant, Monday to Friday, and get better and I think that's what you're seeing out there. This team has belief and confidence and that's what we need to continue."

Parker added: "I'm not looking at who's above us and who's around us, all I'm focusing on is us and what we need to do. When the curtain comes down at the end of the season, we'll either be good enough to stay in this division or not, but my message is let's keep fighting, let's keep improving, let's keep moving."

Parker was happy to single out midfielders Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Harrison Reed for their contributions.

He said: "They were both exceptional. Immense. Ruben we all understand his qualities and Harrison has been pivotal. Two players who are young and have not had loads and loads of football at this level, but certainly their taking to it very, very well."



https://www.capitalfootball.co.uk/single-post/parker-full-of-praise-for-way-his-players-coped-with-pressure-to-beat-the-blades