Neil Redfearn says he would settle for a point away at Fulham tonight, insisting Leeds United’s goalless draw with Nottingham Forest on Saturday was proof of their new-found assurance in the Championship.
Leeds will look for a first win at Craven Cottage in exactly 30 years this evening but Redfearn claims a mentality of “don’t get beat” is behind the form responsible for taking his side out of the relegation fight which Fulham are embroiled in. The London club – favourites to win the Championship before the season started – are 20th in the table and struggling to make themselves safe after a torrid year.
Leeds were in a similar state three months ago, beaten 1-0 by Fulham at Elland Road and in danger of falling into the relegation places, but a spell of impressive and consistent results have convinced Redfearn that his team are adjusted to the demands of the Championship.
“We understand the division now and we’re far more like a Championship side,” Redfearn said.
“It’ll be a difficult game tonight because Fulham have good players, players who can hurt you on their day. But they’re in a difficult situation and we’re
well aware of that as well.
“If we can win, great. If we can’t win, we don’t get beat. That’s been the motto for the past couple of months. It’s brought us rewards.”
United fought out a tight draw with Forest at Elland Road on Saturday, a result which inflicted further damage on Forest’s faint hopes of reaching the play-offs.
The Nottingham club have experienced their own revival since appointing Dougie Freedman as manager at the start of February and Redfearn said the underwhelmed mood at the end of Saturday’s game was a “measure of how far we’ve come.”
“The disappointment was that we filled the stadium with our supporters and we wanted to send them home happy with a win,” he said. “But it wasn’t for the lack of trying.
“I thought we played well and perhaps lacked a cutting edge in the final third but the performance was sound enough. We defended well, a clean sheet against a free-scoring Forest side that have been getting threes and fours against people.
“We’ve kept a couple of clean sheets back-to-back now and we’ve tightened up at the back. It’s a measure of how far we’ve come that we’re disappointed that we haven’t beaten Forest.”