Allardyce relieved after crucial win

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Blackburn boss Sam Allardyce is confident that Wednesday night's late 2-1 victory over Fulham can go a long way to exorcising the spectre of relegation from Ewood Park.

Allardyce concedes that despite his best efforts to focus his players' attention away from any negative press, but having gone to Craven Cottage in 18th, they returned to Lancashire three places higher and with a morale-boosting second-half display to further bolster their spirits.

"We've secured a very important victory, our second away win on the trot, which shows us the team are in very good form," said Allardyce. "We showed our commitment, our fitness and then our quality to make sure we got this very important victory."

Such a conclusion looked unlikely when makeshift striker Clint Dempsey made light of some generous defending to put Fulham one up inside 90 seconds.

But driven on by the impeccable Stephen Warnock, Rovers conjured an equaliser from El-Hadji Diouf - despite concerns over offside - and an 85th-minute winner courtesy of Jason Roberts.

Allardyce added: "Mark Schwarzer pulled off some great saves, which in the end showed we might have won it even more comfortably. But we've got the win and it's a huge relief from a mental point of view.

"Continuing to see yourselves in the bottom three doesn't help, even though you tell them 'you can't look at the papers, stay away from them'.

"It's impossible not to see it, not to see where you are, it's in your face all the time. People are talking about relegation all the time when you're in that position.

"So we're relieved to be out of that position for a bit. Relegation is not something we're out of but victory here has made life much easier to get out of it.

"Now they can look at the papers if they want to!"

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Mark Schwarzer
Blackburn Rovers
Premier League
El-Hadji Diouf
Stephen Warnock
Jason Roberts
Clint Dempsey

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