Head Coach Reaction

Saturday 27 January 2018 18:00

Slaviša Jokanović praised his squad for fighting back to claim all three points at Oakwell.

Fulham went down to a Liam Lindsay goal in the first half, but a Ryan Sessegnon strike and two stoppage time goals ensured the Whites went home happy.

When the Head Coach was asked if his side were worried heading into the half-time break, he responded with a smile. “Nervous? We are always nervous,” Jokanović said. “This is part of football.

“We started a little bit nervous,” he continued. “We didn’t play with enough pace, and they pressed us very hard. After that we tried to play a little bit more direct.”

But a sending off for Dimitri Cavare on the stroke of half-time changed the game. When questioned on whether this might have tilted things in Fulham’s favour, Jokanović acknowledged that “the second yellow card was an important moment for my team.

“In the second half of the game we played with more patience, moved the ball very well and fortunately we scored the goal early,” the Head Coach said, referring to Fulham’s spirited start to the second half.

“We also tried to look to the bench to try and find some kind of solution. And then, in injury time, we scored two goals more.”

When asked about Matt Targett’s debut, the Head Coach was very enthusiastic. “It was great,” Jokanović said.

“He’s a fast player with a very good left foot. He helped us when we tried to be more aggressive on the pitch. He’s only had three of four training sessions with us. He still needs a little bit of time to adjust himself. He’s a player with Premier League experience; he did a great job for us today and I can expect he still can be even better.”

This victory put the Whites in the Play-Off positions, but Jokanović refused to look too far ahead. “We are only thinking about the next game, how to win that game, and if that’s successful, then we’ll only be thinking about the next game after Forest,” the Head Coach said, emphasising the squad’s incremental approach.

“We are going step by step,” he continued. “We have good momentum, we can be satisfied, but we haven’t done anything. We still must be focused and concentrated in our work. Taking it step by step—this is our job.”

“This doesn’t guarantee us anything. We need to keep going. We need to focus and push hard in training. If we are in the top six at the end of the season, only then is when you can say whether or not it was a success for us.

“This is our fourth league win in a row,” Jokanović pointed out. But the Head Coach still urged his team to remain focused. “We were always thinking about how to win the game,” he said.

“This is the best thing you can think about right now.”

Make sure you're at the Cottage next Saturday as we aim to make it five straight league wins when Nottingham Forest come to town.