Fulham defender John Arne Riise looking to leapfrog Everton and Liverpool
Friday 27 April 2012
John Arne Riise is targeting a Merseyside double over the next four days that could set Fulham on course for a top-seven finish in the Barclays Premier League.
Fulham tackle Everton at Goodison Park tomorrow and then cross Stanley Park to face FA Cup finalists Liverpool on Tuesday night at Anfield.
"With two good results we can go above both teams and that is a big thing for us," said Riise, Fulham's former Liverpool full-back.
"I knew this was a club that would like to be in the top 10 regularly and be consistent on that.
"I don't think anyone would be expecting us to be fighting with Everton and Liverpool for places in the league.
"In that point we have done well and probably Liverpool have underachieved."
Fulham have rediscovered their form in recent weeks, building a run of three league wins and a home draw with Chelsea from their last four matches.
"It will be a tough game (against Everton) but we have been on a good run of results and I am confident we can go there and hopefully get a good result," Riise told Fulham's official website.
"It has been a tough place to go for the Fulham players and the fans. Hopefully we can change that this weekend."
Striker Pavel Pogrebnyak slipped right back into the groove with a goalscoring return against Wigan last weekend, after missing two matches with an ankle injury.
Clint Dempsey spearheaded Fulham's attack in Pogrebnyak's absence, scoring three times, but together he believes they are a force to be reckoned with.
"Clint Dempsey has done very well when he has played as a striker against Bolton and Chelsea. I really enjoy playing up front when Clint is in midfield because when we are playing together on the field, we are great," Pogrebnyak said.
"The match on Saturday will be a very important contest because both teams are looking for points in the table.
"As we say in Russia 'the appetite comes with the food' and I believe we can do better as a team and finish the season strongly."
Fulham also have striker Andrew Johnson fit and available, although long-term absentees Bryan Ruiz, Steve Sidwell and Zdenek Grygera are long-term absentees.
Manager Martin Jol has been unwell this week but the club were uncertain, when contacted, whether he had been well enough to travel with the squad to Merseyside.
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