Marco Silva insists Fulham’s better than expected performances in the Premier League doesn’t mean that they will be taking the FA Cup lightly.

The Fulham head coach insists the world’s oldest club cup competition is very important and wants his side to go as far as possible in this season’s edition. Silva told his pre-match press conference this afternoon:

“It’s definitely our ambition to do well in the FA Cup. A historic competition, a really important competition for all the clubs, but mainly we are looking for ourselves. It’s a competition that myself as a manager, and our players, we are going to do our best to go through in the competition and keep all the ambition to do our best.

Of course it’s a special one, and I’ve mentioned that to our players. It was the first time when we played against Hull City, and this will be the same. We are preparing the game like we prepared the previous ones for the Premier League. For us, it’s really important.”

Silva knows that Fulham can’t take progress for granted with the Whites facing in-form Sunderland, who will be backed by a massive travelling support at Craven Cottage, tomorrow afternoon.

“It’s always a really tough game in this situation. It doesn’t matter if you are facing Premier League sides, Championship sides, League One sides, whatever it is, it’s always really special – their ambition, their desire. I think everyone will understand when the game starts.

A big number of fans follow their team as well. All of us know how Sunderland is as a football club, and when they are in a good moment how they can be really well supported by their fans. Tomorrow we are going to feel that we are playing an FA Cup match against a club with a great fanbase, and a squad that wants to come here and do their best to go through in the competition. It’s up to us to play at our very best because our desire and our ambition is really to play the next round.”

The Fulham boss hinted that he may include some fringe players in the starting line-up against the Black Cats.

“Some players are deserving their chance, definitely. For me, it makes sense. Of course, like I said before, it is a really important competition for us. We rotated the players against Hull away from home, and some players performed well, some players got that chance, and probably again it’s a moment for us to see some performances, see some pop up. Some are deserving more minutes as well, and it will be a moment for some of them to start the game.”