Fulham V Tottenham Hotspur at Craven Cottage : Match Preview

18 February 2017 02:34
Fulham V Tottenham Hotspur - view commentary, squad, and statistics of the game live.

Fulham boss Slavisa Jokanovic looking to earn 'prestige' from Spurs showdown

Fulham boss Slavisa Jokanovic admits his side's high-profile FA Cup clash against Tottenham provides him with the perfect stage to show off his managerial credentials.

The Cottagers host Spurs - who will head to west London following back-to-back away defeats - in the fifth round after thrashing Premier League side Hull 4-1.

Jokanovic, the former Chelsea midfielder, has impressed at Fulham since he took charge of the club in December 2015, guiding them to eighth in the Sky Bet Championship table ahead of Sunday's fixture.

The 48-year-old Serbian is, however, out of contract in the summer and while he is in talks with the club over a new deal, a strong performance against Spurs will do little to harm his burgeoning reputation.

"It's a great opportunity personally for myself," Jokanovic said. "I don't see this game in front of us like one normal game. It is an extra present for us.

"If we can win it can be prestigious for the club, for the players, and why not for myself?

"In this life you can spend the money and you can earn the money, but if you spend the prestige it is a very complicated life in front of you. I am going to fight for some kind of prestige in this game."

Tottenham have won just two of their last 14 matches on the road. They suffered a 2-0 defeat at Liverpool last weekend before a surprise first-leg loss in the Europa League against Belgian side Gent on Thursday.

"I watched the game last night, and Gent played very good football," Jokanovic added. "They were aggressive and strong.

"I believe they (Spurs) will change the team a little bit and they will use some different players but this team is full of quality.

"This is the FA Cup. We must respect this competition and play with energy and with ambition to pass the round.

"I will try to field a competitive squad. I will try to choose the best team for what is in front of us, and what is in front of us is one of the top Premier League teams. It's not time for myself to try to make some experiments in February."

Meanwhile, Tottenham midfielder Harry Winks will be the apprentice taking on the master if he gets to face Fulham's Scott Parker.

When Parker was leading Spurs into the Champions League under Harry Redknapp in 2012, Winks was 16 and still coming up through the club's youth system.

Parker was a guiding influence on the talented teenager who, now aged 21, is enjoying a breakthrough season at White Hart Lane as third pick in central midfield behind only Mousa Dembele and Victor Wanyama.

It is perhaps no coincidence that Winks' tenacity, efficiency and will to win are all reminiscent of Parker in his prime.

"He was a top player and a top person as well," Winks said.

"He was great with me, always giving me advice, and his career speaks for itself and he's a player I'd love to aspire to get one day.

"I think when I first trained with the first team he was near the end of his time at Spurs and I was in and out of the sessions.

"As a young scholar just looking up to someone like Scott and training with him it was more like I was in awe of him.

"Hopefully if I do get the chance to play against him it will be respect on both sides, but I will go out and try to win."

Parker, at 36, is 15 years Winks' senior and no longer a regular starter for Fulham, who sit eighth in the Championship.

Winks recalled how Parker called him in after training one time for some specific, individual feedback.

"Being a midfielder himself. He was coming to the end of his career at Spurs and he was looking more to the coaching side," Winks said.

"Obviously he has a lot of advice to pass on and me being a young player coming through the academy I was just trying to get as much advice as possible. Scott just seemed to be perfect for that.

"I remember there was one session after training I went into a room with him and we watched clips back of his game and he talked me through what he thought was good in his game and what I needed to watch back and do myself.

"He is just an all-round midfielder. He has captained England, he is a top player - his passing, his tackling, his mentality.

"When he goes on the pitch, he always gives 100 per cent and that is what I like to emulate as well."

Defender Jan Vertonghen is available for the tie.

Vertonghen is likely to start on the bench after recovering from an ankle problem but Danny Rose and Erik Lamela are still out with knee and hip injuries respectively.

Harry Kane sustained a knock to his knee in Spurs' Europa League defeat to Gent on Thursday and may not be risked.

Source: PAR