Stefan Johansen said Fulham dominated their FA Cup third round tie at Cardiff from ‘start to finish’ and was delighted to ensure the Whites were in the hat for the fourth round draw.
The Norwegian midfielder continued his fine recent run of form with the equaliser after Fulham had fallen behind to Anthony Pilkington’s deflected free kick, which was a fitting way to mark his 26th birthday. Speaking to FulhamFCTV after the final whistle, Johansen was very pleased that Slavisa Jokanovic’s side had delivered such a composed and complete performance:
Yeah, it’s nice. That’s what we came here for and it’s good to get through to the next round. That was always our goal – so, yeah, it’s nice. I think we have played well for the last couple of games now, but some games we couldn’t see out the result. I think we did it today. I can’t really remember that they had any very big chances so it was a great team performance and, as I say, I’m happy that we’re through to the next round.
He saluted his team-mates character to come back after what he described as a ‘lucky goal’ could have dented Fulham’s confidence.
To be honest, I think it was a bit of a lucky goal. It took a deflection. I think Marcus [Bettinelli] would have been there if it went over the wall, so it was a bit lucky but we always believe we are going to score goals and we did in the end. We wasn’t too stressed about that.
The former Celtic midfielder feels he should be judged by his personal contribution in terms of assists and goals and wants to keep his own excellent form going until May as Fulham push for promotion from the Championship.
As I said when I first signed, I want to help the team with goals and assists. I feel that I am in good form right now so it’s just about keeping that going until the end of the season and count up how many points we get and how many goals and assists I have done.
Johansen also praised Jokanovic’s flexibility – the Serbian head coach switched to a back three of Ragnar Sigurdsson, Tim Ream and Denis Odoi – and the change in system allowed Fulham’s flying wing-backs to cut through Cardiff with ease.
We changed the formation today. We played three at the back and, as I said, I think it went really well. I think we controlled the game from start to finish, even when we went down. It worked out well for us and we just need to continue that because, for me, we have such a good team with the ball, we’re not a team who really should kick it long every time, we want to keep it in the floor, and I think we did this well today.