Roy Hodgson has ruled out any possibility of Fulham playing for the draw that would take them into the next round of the Europa League tonight.
The Fulham manager feels that such an approach would be dangerous with Shakhtar Donetsk possessing plenty of quality and an away goal – meaning that one mistake could prove very costly.
Playing for a draw is a difficult thing to do, you automatically give the initiative to the other team. I don’t think it’s in our nature or in our style of play to do that, surrender the initiative and try to shut up shop for 90 minutes.
I think we want to play them, match them at least in their play and that means attacking well and defending well. Certainly there is going to be nothing in our preparations that will take into account that we only need a draw.
We are preparing to play well against a team that we know will come at us and try to cause us problems. First of all we will try to stop that and then when we get the ball we can cause them some problems.
An away goal is useful, of course, you make the task a little bit easier for yourself. But it’s an away goal in a defeat so they’ve still got to win the game.
Shakhtar will be perfectly aware of that and I don’t think they will under-estimate us. Their coach, who I spoke to after the game, was impressed with our performance at Craven Cottage and I’m sure his team will be preparing, as we are, for another tough encounter.