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Fulham coach Marco Silva welcomes Southampton amid George Cohen sadness

last updated Friday 30th December 2022, 7:18 PM

Fulham Football Club

Fulham coach Marco Silva
Fulham coach
Marco Silva
Marco Silva
His Wiki page
Fulham’s year will end in poignant circumstances on Saturday, as we pay tribute to George Cohen at Craven Cottage.

The Fulham family will join together ahead of kick-off to celebrate the life of one of our greatest sons, prior to our clash with Southampton.

Our guests arrive in London currently sitting at the bottom of the standings, but when asked if it represents a good opportunity to end the year on a high, Silva replied: “I don’t see it in this way, sorry.

“The Premier League is the Premier League. I understand the question, the last few results for them were not the best.

“Of course, they changed the manager. The manager had the break, four weeks at least to prepare the team well, and they will be ready.

Fulham defender George Cohen
Fulham defender
George Cohen
George Cohen
His Wiki page
“The last one was not the best result for them but they will want to react. In the Premier League, you cannot think that will be an easy game. Never. And if you think that, you are going to lose in that moment.

“We respect Southampton, like we would respect them if they were first in the table. The way we prepare is as if we were playing the team who is first in the table.

“We have to be really strong to play at our best level to win the football match, because they want to react. We want a reaction from ourselves from the good game we played, and of course we want to keep the same level, if we cannot do better.

“And if we are at our best level, we will have chances to win. At home, with our fans behind us, the atmosphere in our stadium will be special because of all the things [in honour of George] before the kick-off.

“The year has been so special for us, the fans will be there to enjoy with us, and they will play a key part in that game.”

There was a lovely moment at full-time on Monday when Roy Hodgson – having been a pundit during Fulham’s victory over Crystal Palace – politely asked Marco if he could attend the Club’s tribute for Cohen.

When Marco met Roy.

And Silva was more than happy to extend an invitation to our New Year’s Eve fixture.

“It will be a pleasure for us to have Roy with us,” he said. “It’s important for him to be there, but he’s always really welcome at our football club.

“And he’s always welcome from me personally as well because he’s one person that I really respect. Since I joined the Premier League, every time I played against him we always had good conversations.

“He’s a real gentleman, and someone that I have all the respect for and who will always be welcome. In this moment, even more, because it’s an important moment for us, but I know that it’s a really important moment for him to be there.

“It will be an emotional moment before the match, for sure, with what we’re doing for George, like it was [at Crystal Palace], but this time at home with our fans it will be much more.

“It is a moment for us to be all together again before the kick-off.”

It has been a sensational calendar year for the Whites, something that Silva recognises while still aiming even higher.

“It's been really special for our football club,” he admitted. “Not because of the promotion, but the way we did it – the title, the way we were so dominant all that season.

“After that, we knew that we it was important for us to start this Premier League chapter in the same way. We knew it was really important to keep the momentum, in a different competition of course, a completely different challenge for us.

“There have been special moments for us in 2022 but we want more, and we want the next one, if possible, to be even better.”

Source Geoff Pruce at Fulham FC
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