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The Arizonan

Coleman praises Fulham effort

last updated Tuesday 03rd October 2006, 9:52 AM
Chris Coleman
Chris Coleman

Fulham boss Chris Coleman praised his team's character following their unlikely fightback, although he admitted he thought they had won it when Francis put through his own goal four minutes from full-time.

Coleman said: 'At 3-2, we were thinking the job was done, but it was a great finish from Ashley Young for their equaliser.

'We worked so hard and thought we were there, but we will work on defending set pieces for the rest of the week, because Watford are very organised in those situations.

'We had a chat at half-time, and told the players to get the ball down and start playing. When we started to do what we are good at, we caused Watford problems.'

Second-half substitute McBride made an excellent impression, and Coleman said the former America international was close to his best form after a slow start to the season.

Coleman added: 'Brian is starting to come into his own. It has taken a bit of time, but the goal was a fantastic finish.

'Watford is a hard place to come, and many teams will find that to be the case this season, so I was delighted with the courage we displayed.'

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Watford boss Adrian Boothroyd branded his team 'naive' after they threw away a two-goal lead to draw 3-3 with Fulham tonight.

Adrian Boothroyd
Adrian Boothroyd

The Hornets seemed to be cruising to victory after goals from Marlon King and Ashley Young had put them 2-0 up, but Watford conceded three goals in the last 19 minutes - including a shocking own-goal from Damien Francis - and were staring at defeat.

Young's second goal, in the 89th minute, rescued a point, but Watford are still searching for their first Premiership win of the season after seven games.

'We were naive,' Boothroyd said. 'We managed some wonderful moves, and got ourselves 2-0 up.

'But we are a team used to delivering knock-out punches. We stopped doing what we were good at after we'd gone 2-0 up.

'We were on the back foot and decided to cover up, and that is not what we are about.

'I'm sure I will be able to find positives from this match, but I can't manage it tonight.'

Boothroyd refused to condemn Francis, a £1.5million summer signing from Wigan, for the 86th-minute own-goal that put Fulham 3-2 up.

Substitute Brian McBride and former Watford striker Heidar Helguson had netted to level the scores when Francis, following a period of dreadful defending, thrashed the ball into his own goal from three yards out while under pressure.

Boothroyd continued: 'Damien is a fantastic player, and he has already been a great signing for us.

'We take collective responsibility for what happens. We win together, we draw together, and we lose together, and this is not a time to rant and rave.

'We are responsible for what we do, and Fulham did not have to work hard to score tonight. We gifted them three goals.

'We should never have been 3-2 down, but this is as steep a learning curve as there is.'

 

 

 

 

 

Source Soccernet
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