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Chris Baird has targets Europa League group qualification

last updated Tuesday 02nd August 2011, 10:21 PM

Fulham defender Chris Baird
Fulham defender
Chris Baird
Chris Baird
Fulham defender Chris Baird has targeted qualification for the Europa League group stage but expects a tough match in Thursday's third qualifying round second leg against RNK Split.

The Cottagers endured a frustrating night in last week's first leg as they struggled to a goalless draw in Croatia.

After victories over Faroese minnows NSI Runavik and Northern Irish part-timers Crusaders, the west Londoners had been expected to secure another win at Dugopolje's Stadion Hrvatski Vitezovi but Split proved dogged opponents.

Boss Martin Jol admitted in last week's post-match press conference that he anticipates another difficult match in the second leg and Baird has echoed his manager's sentiments.

'I can see that myself as well,' he told Fulham's official website. 'I think the draw was a good result for us because they weren't a bad side.

'I'm not making excuses. The pitch was a big factor for us but they also made it a tough game.

'Now we'll be on our own surface, with our own fans behind us and I would fully expect us to get the win.'

He added: 'It's been great to be in the Europa League again.

'Obviously the results show that we're taking it seriously.

'We've had a few tough games but we've come through them.

'The last game against RNK was a hard one but hopefully we're going to get the win we need back at the Cottage.

'We'll be hoping to get into the group stages again. We're in the competition and we want to do well and get as far as we can.

'It's going to be hard no matter what but, at the end of the day, it's just down to us. Stroll: Fulham eased through the early rounds of the Europa League 'If we can get into the group stages it will be magnificent for the club and great for the boys.'

Source Daily Mail
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