Fulham boss Hodgson: We can't relax

Fulham boss Roy Hodgson attempted to cool celebrations after victory over Birmingham City.

Hodgson joined chairman Mohamed Al Fayed and the players for a lap of honour after goals from Brian McBride and Erik Nevland had fired the Cottagers to a 2-0 victory over Birmingham.

The result - their third win in four games - has edged Fulham out of the Barclays Premier League relegation zone for the first time since Boxing Day.

Victory over Portsmouth at Fratton Park in next Sunday's finale would complete a remarkable escape act and Hodgson is ready to demand one last push from his side.

He said: "We've been written off for a long time and I understand that because we've been at the bottom of the table for a long time.

"It's not been easy for myself and my players to consistently face questions like 'is that the end?' and 'are you finished?'.

"To say the right thing and what you believe without making yourself look foolish is difficult.

"The atmosphere right now is euphoric and I'm happy about that because you need to take all the good moments that come in football.

"But it's not finished yet and the euphoria of this week could turn into sadness next Sunday if we're relegated.

"But if that happens, and most people thought it would happen long before this, then we will have gone down fighting and playing football.

"The players will have to be ready to play a cup final against Portsmouth.

"I'm just happy we've got the chance because after the Liverpool defeat it looked like it would take a miracle to survive."

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