ulham have adopted their home routine for Saturday’s trip to Aston Villa in the hope it will inspire the end of an away record which goalkeeper Mark Crossley describes as “embarrassing”.
The Cottagers remain the only side from all four leagues yet to win on their travels and are desperate to conclude their dismal run at Aston Villa on Saturday.
In a bid to transfer the club’s impressive home form onto the road, manager Chris Coleman has altered preparations to emulate the build-up to a match at Craven Cottage.
Tickets have been booked for the squad to watch new thriller ‘Inside Man’ at the cinema and the players have been given more freedom than normal.
“We’re going to do a few things differently. We’ll travel up in our own clothes and we’ll go to the cinema – the tickets have been arranged,” said Crossley.
“For dinner we can eat with who we want between seven and eight and we’ll turn up at the game in suits instead of tracksuits.
“It’s all about team spirit. We prepared very well last week before the Chelsea game and we’re trying to copy that.”
Assistant boss Steve Kean revealed the thinking behind the idea was to relieve as much pressure on the players as possible.
“We’ve spoken about changes we can make and are going to treat Villa as a home match,” he said.
“The boys will be wearing their suits to the game, they will be going to the cinema tonight and they won’t eat as a group – they can eat at the restaurant whenever they want.
“It’s psychological because the preparation will be like a Friday night as if we are at home. We’ll be giving the lads a little bit of space to try to relax them.
“It was Chris’ idea. He spoke to Luis Boa Morte and told him we’d give the players some space and take the pressure off them mentally.”