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Goals from Ryan Giggs and Wayne Rooney allied to a Javier Hernandez double saw United to a one-sided win, with Aaron Hughes’ late effort scant consolation to the travelling Cottagers faithful.

With Fulham facing a fight to stay in the Barclays Premier League Jol may quietly view his side’s exit in a positive light, but the Dutchman appeared downcast and hurting after seeing his troops so thoroughly outclassed.

“We tried to have good intentions and play our football but we couldn’t,” Jol said.

“We couldn’t link up from the back and we couldn’t keep the ball.

“It was still 1-0 at half-time so we were still in it, but we came out and they scored two early goals and the game was finished.

“Luckily enough they only scored a fourth goal because it could have been one of those days that they scored six or seven.

“But it’s a one-off game and we lost it. For us the most important thing is the league.”

Jol is quite happy to see relegation rivals Wigan and Reading carry on in the Cup while Fulham focus on collecting the 12 points he feels they need to survive.

“It’s no guarantee of safety, but on the other hand, I always like it if teams, especially those around us, have replays or stay in the Cup,” said the Cottagers boss.

“So in that respect it’s probably better to be out of it. It’s quite simple – we need four or five wins. But if you leave it up until the end of the season, you could probably end up with a problem.

“If we win those games as soon as possible, it could be easier. I think you will need 36 or 37 points to be safe and at present, there are probably eight teams who are fairly concerned.”