Martin Jol praised Fulham’s fighting spirit after his side snatched a vital home win in the closing stages of this afternoon’s tight fixture with Stoke City.

Darren Bent came off the bench to grab the winning goal seven minutes from time and Jol insisted his players ‘fought like lions’ to record their first home league win since April 1.

Relieved, emotional, whatever you want to call it, we needed those three points for sure. We realise we didn’t play our best match but there is a lot of relief because we needed the points. Although they looked better than us, for all their pressure they only had a few chances. They could have a penalty and we could have had one as well.

We need wins and wins will give us more stability. I can cope with the pressure. The players realise that and, if the manager can cope with it, they can cope as well. Today we showed a great team spirit and fought like lions.

Jol reserved special praise for his match-winner Bent.

It’s great to have someone like Darren Bent. I always do that with players [try to nurture the best out of them]. They always have good seasons when they are with me.

Darren Bent will have a good season. He knows what my intentions are. Sometimes he can’t start but my intentions are still to use him and get the best out of Berbatov and Darren Bent.