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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Feb 24, 2009

Hodgson reiterates schedule frustrations

Roy Hodgson says Fulham "tried every avenue" to get on Tuesday night's FA Cup fifth round replay against Swansea moved to give his players time to prepare for the match.

Hodgson's side have had just a day of rest since their 2-0 defeat of Premier League strugglers and have had no training time.

The Cottagers boss has made no secret of his annoyance at the schedule his side have been forced to endure - with Chelsea's Champions League meeting with Juventus ruling out a Wednesday fixture - and insists that every effort has been made to find an alternative.

But despite Arsenal being granted a later date for their fifth round clash due to European commitments, Fulham's pleas have fallen on deaf ears.

"Our people tried every avenue to get the game changed so that we would have a better preparation time but unfortunately they didn't succeed," said Hodgson.

"I don't want to make any more of a fuss of it than I'm already making by saying that one day's preparation is not enough.

"That's just stating an obvious fact. There is nobody in football who thinks that playing on a Sunday in the Premier League and again in the FA Cup on a Tuesday is a good idea."

Sunday's win was made possible by the return to form of Bobby Zamora, who grabbed his first league goal since September and set up a second for strike partner Andy Johnson.

Now though, Hodgson may be forced to break up the successful strike partnership to avoid burnout, with the likes of Danny Murphy, Dickson Etuhu and Clint Dempsey also in the frame for a rest after all action displays against Albion.

"We have a high energy game and we ask a lot of our players," added Hodgson.

"With only one day's rest it's going to be very hard for those players to go and give the same performance again.

"I'm not anxious to make big changes, that's not something I want to do, but it might be forced upon me because I want to put a team out that can run around for 90 minutes and work hard.

"The last thing we want to do is have players getting injured because we're asking them to do things they're not able to do."

One player who is desperate to be involved is Wales midfielder Simon Davies.

The winger has friends who both play for and follow Swansea and made some bold predictions ahead of the first tie which his team-mates were not able to make good on.

Now he is hoping to put things right at Craven Cottage.

"Before the game it was me texting them saying 'we'll be giving you a roasting' and I got egg on my face on that one," said Davies.

"Hopefully there's a few things we can put right.

"I've got a few friends who are (Swansea fans) and a lot of friends went to the game, that's why it was frustrating.

"It was my local team, and they were saying 'My God, Fulham were lucky, you were crap'.

"We're looking forward to it and if we play like we did on Sunday we're confident we'll get the result."

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