Looking Up

Saturday 2 February 2013 09:00

Martin Jol looked back on our midweek match against West Ham United and admitted that the win could prove pivotal later in the season.

With Manchester United next up on Saturday afternoon, Jol was delighted to take three points from our clash with the Hammers – a result which saw us leapfrog our London rivals in the Barclays Premier League table.

“If West Ham had beaten us it would have been crucial points for them,” Jol said. “But we were lucky enough and fortunate enough to get the points against them.

“It was a vital game for us - it was almost a must-win game because the managers of the other clubs were maybe thinking that Fulham would be the club that gets dragged into the [relegation] situation, or Norwich City, or West Ham.

“Now Stoke City are above us but are not far away from us so we will look up [the table] now. Of course you look down because you need wins – with 28 points you will go down, that is for certain. But there are other teams with bigger problems than us so we will try to be sharp and motivated and inspired to get a few wins.”

But while the Dutchman was naturally thrilled to see his side secure a first league win since New Year’s Day, he warned that there is still a long way to go in the season and that things can change very quickly.

“The pressure is never off,” he stated. “Look at West Ham, they were doing so well. Look at my friend Chris Hughton at Norwich, they were unbelievable and they are on less points than us now, so you are never out of trouble.

“That is what I said, there are always eight or nine teams fighting against relegation and that is not something to be proud of but it’s sport, it’s football, it’s the Premier League. I can remember two years ago when Birmingham City won the Carling Cup and had to play all these games and then went down, and they were fine before that. I remember they were not even in the bottom three, so we are aware of the situation. 28 points is good but not great – we could have had more but we could have had less.”