Coleman happy with attitude
By Alex Livie. Last Updated: January 1, 1970 1:00am
Fulham chief Chris Coleman has praised his troops for the way they ground out victory against Charlton on Monday.
The Welsh tactician has conceded that Charlton were the better side in the opening 45 minutes, but Fulham claimed victory thanks to goals from Brian McBride and the returning Claus Jensen.
Coleman's side went into the international break on the back of a four-game winless run, but they responded with a battling success on home soil.
Fulham came on strong in the second half and Coleman feels his players are benefiting from the new fitness regime at Craven Cottage.
"The players have dug in and you saw tonight in the first 45 minutes we did not play great football, Charlton played well, but we hung in there," Coleman said on Sky Sports 1.
"That's what we are all about at the moment, we are more resilient and tougher to play against.
"Physically we are very strong and very fit, we have taken that on one step form last term and the players are fitter and stronger."
Coleman was particularly impressed with the defensive efforts of Zat Knight and Ian Pearce.
"The first half, certainly offensively, we were frivolous with our passing," added Coleman. "Charlton had the better chances and maybe last season we would have been one-nil down, but the two centre backs Zat Knight and Ian Pearce have been fantastic.
"They have had their critics and I am delighted for them, they have been fantastic together and if they hadn't been there tonight we would have gone in one or two-nil down.
"But second half the guys came out and were a lot better."
McBride broke the deadlock with an excellent finish and Coleman lavished praise on the powerful American.
"He is a dream," Coleman said of McBride. "Any manager who has had Brian will tell you his attitude is fantastic.
"But he has quality as well. He is not quick, but he is so strong and he holds the ball up and he will score a goal.
"His attitude is 100 percent and he is a joy. He is such a favourite here."