THE JOL VERDICT
Martin Jol gives his considered view on our 4-0 FA Cup victory over Fulham on Sunday…
Martin Jol gives his considered view on our 4-0 FA Cup victory over Fulham on Sunday…THERE WERE TWO sides to our game against Fulham on Sunday. Defensively we were very good and we competed well against a tough team - Michael Dawson and Anthony Gardner were particularly strong at the back, while all the players performed with determination and passion, which is what I want. Then we were clinical in taking our chances when they came along.
If we can show those qualities in each game our ability will pull us through and we will get the results we want. At Craven Cottage we scored two very simple goals from Mido flick-ons, which were finished very well by Robbie Keane. You need quality players to do that and we've got them, but we haven't done it in all our games away from home as we did last season where eight different players netted.
We kept a clean sheet on Sunday for the first time in a long while against Premiership opposition, something you want in every game, but obviously not always possible. I have stated that we have a more talented team now, but we have taken a step back in the defensive respect. Last season we kept 13 clean sheets but we have suffered with injuries and suspensions this time around with having played so many games.
We have still won 21 games so far, but our league form has struggled as a result of all the fixtures and we must learn from the experience. Hopefully we will be rewarded by winning a prize at the end of it all, but it won't be easy in the FA Cup after we were pitted against Chelsea on Monday.
When I saw a former Spurs manager in Terry Venables making the draw I thought we might be okay, but we ended up with the toughest draw possible!! The positive thing is that we have given a good account of ourselves in the last couple of seasons at Chelsea - last season we were doing well at 1-1 until a very late goal from William Gallas.
We had a good home game against them in November and we now face a similar challenge to repeat that success.
We will go there with an army of Spurs fans behind us for a massive game. It was the same on Sunday and it is always a great feeling to have such a huge support. Of course we have got a good chance, but they are very strong and I would have much preferred it if we were at home.
Everton are next for us on Wednesday and we do need to turn our league form around. It is still about us and we have to do better, but against Fulham we had a team who proved they wanted to do well, who wanted to grind out a result and we know with our strikers that we are capable of scoring goals against any team.
This is our game in hand and that is important. Our results up at Everton over the last couple of seasons have been good and hopefully it will continue.
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