Steve Kean reckons Fulham put a smile back on ill manager Chris Coleman’s face by booking an FA Cup quarter-final trip to Manchester United with a 3-0 win at West Ham.
Coleman missed the fifth-round replay after contracting an infection, leaving his assistant to guide Fulham through a hard-fought game which the Hammers dominated for long spells.
But two goals in four second-half minutes from Brian McBride and substitute Barry Hayles, followed by Luis Boa Morte’s last-minute clincher will have helped Coleman get well soon.
Kean said: “Chris woke up ill and he was advised to rest.
“It was mentioned at the hotel that the biggest pick-me-up would be playing Manchester United. I’m sure it brought a smile back to his face.
“I think everybody could see that for the majority of the first half West Ham had all the pressure. But the boys squeezed up much higher on them in the second half and pinned them in.”
Victory ended a dismal run of four matches without a win for Fulham, who were stung by defeat to Wolves last weekend.
But Kean revealed that a team meeting in the wake of that defeat had produced the desired response after Coleman had demanded a reaction.
He said: “The standards we’ve set have been poor of late but we had a meeting yesterday. We watched the horrible goals we conceded against Wolves and worked hard on the training ground.”