Cairney: Job To Do

Wednesday 2 May 2018 13:00

While hoping Reading do the business on Sunday, Tom Cairney knows Fulham need to first concentrate on the threat posed by Birmingham City.

Garry Monk’s side need a draw to ensure they’re playing Championship football next season, but the Whites want to condemn them to defeat to give ourselves the best possible chance of automatic promotion.

“It’s going to be a really, really tough game,” Cairney told fulhamfc.com. “We’re going to be under the cosh at times when they throw a few men forward.

“We’ve got to turn up and win the game. Obviously it will be difficult because Birmingham still aren’t safe.

“A point guarantees safety for them so I’m not sure how they’ll start the game, but it should be a great match.

“The mood’s positive. We’re 23 unbeaten so you can’t be anything but positive, but obviously the one thing that we’d wish is to have it in our own hands. That’s the only negative thing.”

Fulham will be backed by 3,300 travelling supporters at St Andrew’s, and with the home areas sold out too, it should be a vociferous afternoon in the Midlands.

“It will be a really good atmosphere because when their fans turn up it’s actually quite loud,” Cairney said.

“It’s going to be one hell of an atmosphere. Fulham fans are coming up in their numbers and it’s going to be a great occasion, an exciting 90 minutes, and I just hope when I’m playing I hear a cheer from our fans that tells me Reading have scored.

“We’ve still got a lot to do but with the way we’ve been playing and the belief that’s in the team, anything can happen in football.”

Cardiff City will be keen to know how Fulham are faring, and Cairney believes the Bluebirds players will be aware of the score at St Andrew’s.

“I think you can always gage a feeling from the atmosphere what other results are,” he explained. “I reckon any player who says he’s not thinking about that is lying, it’s always in the back of your mind what’s going off elsewhere.

“At the end of the day we’ve got to pick up points to stand any chance of getting promoted [automatically], so that’s what we’re going to try and do.

“There will be a lot of pressure on Cardiff but there’s been pressure for quite a while and they’ve dealt with it well, to be fair to them.

“Whether there’s a bit extra on final day, we’ll see, but if we score an early goal or get ahead and the news gets to Cardiff City then that could make it a little bit edgy for them.”

When asked if old pal Sone Aluko would be getting some messages of encouragement in the lead-up to the weekend, Cairney replied: “He’ll be getting a kiss if he does us a favour, I know that!

“I think he might get a few texts off the boys, even Chrissy Martin too. I’ll take anyone in the Reading team helping us out, though.”

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