Kevin McDonald admitted that he was below-par against Birmingham on Saturday – and has urged Fulham to channel the disappointment of losing their unbeaten record into reaching their usual high standards against Burton Albion tomorrow night.
The former Wolves midfielder was not alone in having an off-day against the Blues and struggled when he was shifted in a makeshift centre back position after the sending off of Michael Madl, but felt Fulham were significantly short of the level required to earn wins in the Championship.
We were all disappointed on Saturday. We were sloppy from start to finish, individually and collectively. As a team we were really poor and it’s not been like us for the first five games of the season, nothing like that.
It was a shock to our system but Birmingham came in and set up the way they set up and it was hard to play against, they defended well and they counter-attacked well.
They made it really hard for us. They let us have the ball and as soon as we got the ball they really pressed us quick so we found it tough but we know we are better than that. We didn’t deserve anything from that game and we have to put that behind us as fast as we can.
The beauty of the Championship’s hectic schedule is that an opportunity to put things right immediately arrives tomorrow night with the visit of Burton, who have already surprised a few of the division’s bigger names under the management of Nigel Clough. McDonald has no worries about confidence being dented around the squad.
It’s fine, it’s one bad game. We had a bad game on Saturday and I’m sure there’ll be a couple more throughout the season. So that’s football, that’s how it is.
I think the confidence is always going to be alright around here. We’ve looked good as a team, we’ve shocked a few teams already with our performances, we’re not going to let that drop. We’re going to continue to perform to highest level possible and then on Tuesday hopefully go out and give a good performance first and foremost and hopefully get the three points.
McDonald knows that Burton will be well organised and determined to keep up their own impressive run since the start of the season.
We know ourselves what we’ve got to do. It’s at home, the pressure is on us. They’re playing with a certain freedom because they’ve been promoted and have no pressure on them at all.
So I can understand why they’ve scored a lot of goals but it’s up to us to go in now, get on the ball, dictate the match and really take the game to them.