Tim Ream was delighted after Fulham coped with both being reduced to ten men and a barrage of Norwich City pressure to record a crucial win at Carrow Road yesterday afternoon.
The American centre half felt Fulham’s ‘gritty’ performance was a marked change from recent weeks, as he told GetWestLondon’s Ryan O’Donovan after the final whistle. The former Bolton Wanderers defender was himself in excellent form – delivering a dominant display at the heart of the Fulham back four after being recalled in place of the injured Michael Madl.
I’d call it gritty, it was a good character performance for the team and its something that has been lacking lately. Going down to ten men just before half time and then getting the pen just after and then really having to dig in and defend as an entire team was something that we discussed at half time and it was a gritty, hard fought three points and it was nice to get the third goal at the 90th minute there.
Ream also hailed head coach Slavisa Jokanovic’s reassuring words during the half-time individual that helped Fulham’s players focus on the task at hand and lay out a path towards victory with ten men after the shock of Chris Martin’s sending off.
He told us to calm down. I think guys were a little amped up trying to figure out whether it was or wasn’t [a red card]. Everyone was shouting out instructions trying to keep each other focused and he came in and said calm down, we’re going to have to do things a little differently in the second half and it was nice to get the decision our way just after half time and then from there it was keeping our shape and preventing them from having too many clear cut chances.
Whenever you can get a goal just after half time, especially to put us up 2-0, it definitely helped settle everyone down and gave us a good platform to stand on. I felt for the most part we did very well being down to ten and we made it hard to break us down and hard to beat.