Fulham midfielder Derek Boateng was pleased to play a valuable role in Fulham’s narrow victory over Stoke City.

The Ghanaian international entered the action on the hour mark as a replacement for Giorgos Karagounis and was a dominant force in the middle third of the pitch, helping nullify the visitors’ attacking threat before watching Darren Bent grab the game’s only goal.

“He’s a really good finisher,” Derek said of his match winning teammate. “He’s done a great job since he came in and everyone is really happy with him. Hopefully he can continue to score important goals like that.

“It was a very, very important victory for us. Before the game we knew that it was going to be hard but we’ve been training well so it was very good for us that we were able to get the win and three points in the end – that’s the most important thing.

“It was quite a nervy game but we managed to score a fantastic goal that proved enough to win it for us and, like I said, it was a really important one for us.

“We really, really wanted it on Saturday – we knew what position we occupied in the table so we put everything we had into winning the game. We worked so hard and I give thanks to God that we won the game in the end.

“It was very, very important to go into the international break with three points because when we come back we’ll still have that confidence which we can take into the game against Crystal Palace.”

The victory over the Potters was only Boateng’s second competitive appearance in Fulham colours – his first at Craven Cottage – and he admitted his delight at being given a run out in front of the home supporters.

“I’m very happy to have played in front of the Fulham fans,” he said. “They are good fans, they are always supporting the team and that is so important. So I’m very, very happy to be a part of it and to help us get the win.

“We have a lot of players and everyone is fighting for their position and everyone is looking forward to playing. I’m very patient and I know that my time will come and when I get the chance I have to take it. I’ve been working really, really hard for it and I was very happy to come on and help the team to win.

“I’m pleased with my performance but the most important thing was to get the three points – that was good for us and we deserved it for the hard work that we put in. Now we’ve got seven points and we are looking forward to the next game.”