Hodgson - Cups the priority

Fulham manager
Image: Hodgson: Two cup quarter-finals

Fulham boss Roy Hodgson is now prioritising the Premier League behind the Europa League and the FA Cup.

Fulham boss to go for Europa League and FA Cup success

Fulham manager Roy Hodgson admits the Premier League now sits behind both the Europa League and the FA Cup in his list of priorities. The Cottagers completed a massive turnaround against Serie A giants Juventus in the Europa League on Thursday night, running out emphatic 4-1 winners on the night and 5-4 victors on aggregate. The win put the Londoners into the quarter-finals of the competition, while an FA Cup quarter-final replay with Tottenham on Wednesday awaits in another fine season for Hodgson's men. Sitting comfortable in mid-table in the league, Hodgson admits that with Premier League survival now likely, the club's cup aspirations have propelled to the top of his wish list. "I don't think we'll go down this year," the 62-year-old former Inter Milan coach said. "Maybe we're a few points short but I'm pretty confident that we will do it, so there's no doubt that the two cup competitions will now take priority, particularly the one on Wednesday, but that might be a competition that come Thursday we won't have to worry about because that game at Tottenham is by no means a given."


Hodgson is by no means suggesting that whichever side he picks in the Premier League, in which they host Manchester City on Sunday, will not be dedicated to finding the points to ensure safety. "I think in the Premier League, with the quality of the opposition, the interest in the game, the full stadiums of people, the cheering, the intensity and the speed of the game, I think it will be very difficult for a serious professional footballer not to be up for games," he said. City's home form has been their main strength this term, but defeats away to Hull City, Everton and Stoke, among others, means Fulham have every right to feel confident heading into the game. However, Hodgson is wary of the expensive squad they possess and admits that his team are taking on a side with realistic chances of becoming a top-four outfit. "I haven't thought that much about who they have lost and who they have beat but it's comforting to think that they have lost against some of the so-called 'lesser teams'," he said. "They do have a lot of good players though and they have obviously spent a lot of money on a team that is capable of winning the Premier League just as Chelsea did a few years before them, and I'm certain that they will be very disappointed if they don't get into the top four."

Around Sky