Slavisa Jokanovic praised his players for never giving up after they secured what he described as ‘a great win’ with virtually the last kick of the game at Middlesbrough this afternoon.
The Fulham head coach hailed his team’s character after they absorbed constant pressure from Tony Pulis’ team before moving to within just a point of the Championship play-offs thanks to Ollie Norwood’s penalty in the fifth minute of stoppage time. Jokanovic told his post-match press conference at the Riverside Stadium:
It was a great win for us. This kind of victory – when we’re fighting for important targets – we must win the types of game like the one we won today. This type of victory 100% encourages us, fills us with confidence, and gets us ready for the challenge that is ahead of us.
The Serbian was briefly bemused when he was asked whether he was surprised that Fulham’s winner arrived so late in the contest.
Why not? We didn’t plan to win the game with this type of moment, but it’s a part of the game. It’s part of the competition. And we must be especially satisfied with the result. In the last 20 twenty minutes we started to dominate the game, playing with more confidence. We moved the ball well and created some half-chances.
Jokanovic believes the manner of Fulham’s win over a potential play-off rival could fill his side with confidence as they attempt to repeat last season’s feat and put together a late run to get into the top six.
It’s a positive success for us. This is only three points, but it gives us a positive push for the next challenge that is ahead of us. I expect we’re going to have a positive week ahead of us, working hard and getting ready for the next step.