Manager Reaction

Saturday 5 January 2013 18:25

Martin Jol admitted that while he was disappointed not to see off the challenge of Blackpool at the first time of asking, he was pleased to at least remain in the competition.

The Whites needed a late Giorgos Karagounis goal to equalise against the Tangerines in the Third Round of the FA Cup with Budweiser, and our Manager was left ruing the lack of a cutting edge at Craven Cottage on Saturday afternoon.

“We were frustrated because we had so much of the play but couldn’t get the ball into the net,” he said. “So that was the frustration and, of course, you get more frustrated after they’ve scored so to score nine minutes before the end was a relief.

“We had to grind out a result and I feel it was a good game for the crowd but if we are a little more productive then we could have scored three or four goals. If you cannot score a goal and it is not your day then you have to be happy with a Replay.”

The Dutchman named a strong starting XI for the visit of the Seasiders – a sign of Jol’s intent with regard to the Cup.

“We played the same team again today so everybody realises that we’re taking things seriously,” he explained. “I wanted that to be a signal to the Team and a signal to the fans.

“There were a lot of changes with other teams and different clubs but we didn’t change it. We did well against West Bromwich Albion, we did well against Swansea City, so I thought I’d play the same team today.

“I can’t blame the players, they did everything they could do. It’s [the Replay] just another game for us so we have to go there and if we do what we did against West Brom then it shouldn’t be a big problem.

“But, of course, with the players they’ve [Blackpool] got, they will be better at home so it will be a big task for us.”

The Whites trailed in the tie for 20 minutes before a fantastic Karagounis strike – his first for the Club – brought his side level.

“He’s been in the Team for the last three games and I told him that he could maybe play 60 minutes today because he’s played the other games, but I had to leave him on,” Jol said of his number 14.

“He’s not only a legend in his country, but he’s a warrior for us. He wants to win and he wants to play for the Team and he’s very good for us. I was very happy when he came here and he showed why today, and that is what you need.

“Out of nothing he scored but, if you look at videos on the internet, he’s probably done that eight or nine times before, and he’s capable of doing that.

“That is something that we probably lack a bit; to have shots from midfield or to score out of nothing, and that is something that we lacked over the last couple of months.”