I think we’ve got to be fairly satisfied with the draw at Middlesbrough considering where they are in the table. Although seeing as we were two of the highest-scoring teams going into the game, I was quite shocked to see it end 0-0. It just shows that we can go away from home and be hard to beat and get a good point. It’s nice to get a clean sheet, particularly against one of the teams who look like they’ll be there or thereabouts at the end of the season. The Charlton draw prior to that wasn’t what we wanted but we’re unbeaten in two games on the road now, and you can’t really argue with that. You try to win your home games and not lose your away ones, so hopefully we can start adopting that pattern and build up some momentum.
It’s been three weeks since we last had a game at Craven Cottage, and I must say I’ve been missing the old place. It feels like I haven’t seen Gentleman Jim in ages, so it will be good to catch up with him and Sammy. Obviously Sammy’s new to the team since we launched the radio show, but we all have a laugh and a joke up there, so it will be good to get back. Hopefully it’s not too cold up there on the gantry and it’s an exciting game that we can commentate on and be very biased towards Fulham! When you go away to a team like Middlesbrough and you come away with a well-earned point and a clean sheet, you need to build on that result. And three points against Leeds will make that result even better.
Leeds are coming into it having changed their manager, and I think it was a bit harsh on Uwe Rosler. I don’t understand how you can hire a manager who’s considered good enough, but then 12 games later he’s not. I’ve seen them play a few times and thought they looked quite good, so it was a surprise. But yet again we play another team coming to the Cottage who’ve changed their manager – it seems like it happens all the time. It will be a difficult game because the shackles are off the players and they tend to give an extra 10 or 20 per cent, so it’s going to be an even tougher match now. I definitely buy into the whole ‘new manager syndrome’ factor. In the first game after the change I think the work rate and commitment certainly goes up.
Leeds will be bringing a lot of fans on Wednesday, which doesn’t surprise me as it’s a massive club. I remember playing for Fulham in the Premier League against them at Elland Road and that was a great atmosphere. They had some big players but they’ve since been relegated and had their money problems and many managerial changes. So they’re lacking stability really which is a shame because they’ve got good fans.
After Leeds we’ve got our second home game in a week against Reading, and they’re doing really well. It just goes to show, Steve Clarke had a rough period there and he’s come through it and they’ve started the season really strongly. They got a 1-0 win at home at the weekend so it will be a difficult game but we have to try and take advantage of being at home and get six points out of these next two fixtures.
It’s easy saying it, but six points this week would make everything look rosy. That’s the thing with this league, we keep saying it but if you get that momentum and go on runs and stay unbeaten, then you stand a great chance of reaching the Play-Offs. Me and Jim always speak about how fantastic it would be to finish up in that top six. I played a lot of games for the Club and most of them were in the top league, so to get up there would be great for the players. Me and Jim would love an away day at Wembley, too! Our fans are a good bunch – I travelled to Charlton with them with Barry Hayles and we had a fantastic time, so hopefully we can push ourselves up the league for them and have that excited feeling going into games.
Tickets for Wednesday's game are still available to buy, priced at just £20 adults and £10 juniors. (Prices increase by £5 on matchday).