Mladen's Assessment

Monday 19 November 2012 10:06

Fulham’s goalscorer Mladen Petrić believes his side were unfortunate to come away empty-handed from Sunday’s game with Sunderland.

The Whites were forced to play with 10 men for more than an hour following Brede Hangeland’s dismissal, while our cause was not helped by hamstring injuries suffered by Alexander Kačaniklić and Bryan Ruiz.

Petrić, too, sustained an injury during the game but played through the pain to ensure Fulham weren’t forced to compete with nine men for the remainder of the match.

“It was a hard game for us because it started very badly with the red card for Brede,” Mladen told “Then we were 1-0 down so it was good to come back and equalise, although they scored two minutes after my goal which was a pity.

“I think we have to learn from that game, but we had two injuries so I think that luck was not on our side.”

There was real concern amongst the Cottage faithful when Petrić was withdrawn from action with a mystery injury following his strike.

“I got a kick on my calf when I scored,” he explained. “It made a cut so I had to come off to have stitches put in and then by the time I got back on the pitch it was 2-1. It was a bit painful but I had injections so it was okay.

“I think we tried very hard and we always believed we had it in us to get back in the game. We kept putting pressure on Sunderland and we had some good opportunities again to score but unfortunately we just couldn’t find the net again.”

After seeing our unbeaten run come to an abrupt end at the weekend, the next opportunity for Petrić et al to return to winning ways is at the Britannia Stadium on Saturday when we face Stoke City.

“Of course it will be a difficult game when we go to Stoke at the weekend,” Mladen said. “It will be especially difficult because Brede is suspended and it is the kind of game you need your big centre-back because he’s a tall player and he’s very strong with his head.

“But Philippe [Senderos] played his first game of the season on Sunday and I think he did well. He’s good in the air as well, so I think we have no reason to be scared going into the match. We have a lot of quality in the Team to play a good game there.”