Fulham boss Roy Hodgson has warned against any kind of complacency ahead of their FA Cup clash with non-league Kettering.
Fulham’s nine-match premier League unbeaten run was ended by London rivals West Ham at the weekend and the Cottagers now face a tricky fourth round visit to Blue Square Conference side Kettering.
Kettering have already accounted for League Two sides Notts County and Lincoln City during their cup run this season and Fulham midfielder Simon Davies revealed that Hodgson has already spelt out the dangers.
“The manager has already been telling us in training that if we go there thinking we’re going to have an easy time, we couldn’t be further from the truth,” said Davies.
“If we play like we did against West Ham we’re going to be in for a shock. First and foremost in any game of football you’ve got to compete and, hopefully, after that you can impose your skills and game plan on them.
“Until that happens, we’ve got to compete and fight them all the way until we can break them down.
“We’ll be preparing for this game the same as we do far all games. I’ve played a few games at their ground for Peterborough reserves – it’s a nice stadium and hopefully the pitch won’t be too bad.
“We’ve just got to go there and enjoy it. This is a different game from the norm so if we can go there and show enthusiasm for the challenge and perform to our standards then we should win.
“We’ve just got to get back to what we’re good at which is being strong defensively and trying to hit teams on the break.
“The game is going to be a tricky one, it’s potentially a massive banana skin and we’ve got to be as professional as possible to get the result.”
Fulham will have to tighten up in defence after conceding poor goals against the Hammers in a disappointing league defeat.
But Davies believes the 3-1 setback may have come at just the right time in order for them to re-focus on their goals.
“Maybe that game against West Ham was a timely reminder that we only get points and victories by working hard for each other,” added Davies.
“Every point is hard to get. We hadn’t lost since the start of November and with a very important part of the season coming up, that reminded us what we need to do to kick on and win games.
“The most disappointing thing last weekend wasn’t just the defeat but the way that we lost, so we’re looking to bounce back as soon as possible.
“The mistakes on Sunday were there for all to see but generally I don’t think we threatened them enough and our possession wasn’t good enough.
“It was very frustrating and everyone was very disappointed about it, from the manager to the players. The only thing we can do about it is train hard this week and get through to the next round of the cup.”