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Cottagers winger confident of Europa progress

FC Twente 1-0 Fulham

By | 1st December 2011

Fulham’s summer signing Moussa Dembele believes that his side will qualify from the Europa League group stage despite a heart-breaking 1-0 defeat to Dutch runners-up FC Twente.

In a toughly contested match away from home, the Cottagers always looked second best and were punished when Austria international Marc Janko struck with just over a minute left to play.

Moments later, Andy Johnson received a second yellow card, ruling him out of the final group stage match at home to Odense on December 14.

A win over the Danish club, which has already been eliminated, will ensure progress for Martin Jol’s men as they control their destiny with a one-point lead over third-place Wisla Krakow.

Therefore, Dembele insists that focusing on the preparation for that match will put the Cottagers in a strong position to succeed.

“Everybody will work hard enough to win the final game. It’s very important to us and I think we’ll win it,” Dembele told ESPN immediately after the full-time whistle against group winners Twente.

The 24-year old Belgian added: “We tried to play our way and we would have been happy to take a point, but Twente had most of the game so maybe they deserved to win.”

Following Steve Bruce’s sacking from the Sunderland hot-seat, speculation is rife in regards to the next manager in line to be axed.

With the Cottagers only three points clear of relegation after the first 13 matches of the Barclays Premier League, many believe that they have underachieved considerably thus far.

However, it must be noted that they are only one of the two teams to have taken points away from leaders Manchester City this season and were also impressive in bringing Arsenal’s domestic winning streak to a halt at the Emirates last weekend.

The vast potential within the squad is precisely why Dembele is convinced that defeat against Twente will not add any pressure on Jol and the squad.

“What happened at the end is a bit disappointing for us, but we’re not playing badly as a team,” he concluded.

An exciting Monday night fixture at home to Liverpool awaits the Cottagers, who are sweating on the fitness of both Dembele and Damien Duff.

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