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Fulham boss Chris Coleman blamed his side’s ‘unacceptable’ FA Cup exit on desperate defedning.

Despite previous controversy with referee Mark Halsey, Coleman had no complaints with Vincenzo Montella’s sending off for a clash with Robbie Keane in the dying moments of the match.

‘Vincenzo raised his elbow and swung out, you can’t raise your elbow,’ said Coleman. ‘He’s caught Robbie Keane in the mush. It was frustration.’

Coleman added: ‘We lost it through poor defending, it wasn’t like we didn’t create a chance.

‘You can’t defend like that against a team like Spurs with Keane, Mido and Berbatov.

‘With the first goal our positioning was terrible, the second was identical. We were naive and nervous.’

However, Fulham also had their chances and Paul Robinson was forced to save spectacularly from Brian McBride and Moritz Volz as well as when Mido almost put through his own goal.

Fulham are in position to challenge for a top-half finish but could also be dragged into a relegation battle, which Coleman is aware of.

He added: ‘Luckily we’ve got 32 points, 12 away from the bottom three but if we defend like that there’ll be a relegation battle.’