Sunderland v Fulham: Symons happy with underdogs tag
Fulham will head into Saturday's FA Cup fourth-round tie at Sunderland as second favourites, which is a tag manager Kit Symons is more than happy with.
After being relegated from the Premier League last season, Fulham have been inconsistent so far in the Championship this time around.
However, they have won their last two matches, including a 3-2 victory over Nottingham Forest on Wednesday, thanks to a hat-trick from striker Ross McCormack.
Sunderland have been in poor form since the turn of the year, with their only win in 2015 coming at home against Fulham's Championship rivals Leeds United in the previous round of this competition.
In the league, they have gone five matches without a win, with their sole point during that run coming from a 0-0 draw at fellow strugglers Aston Villa.
And Symons is content for all the pressure to be on Sunderland to help his side achieve a positive result at the weekend.
"We'll be considerable underdogs on Saturday, but I'm quite happy with that," he said.
However, Symons may have to cope without his captain Scott Parker at the Stadium of Light after the midfielder was forced off during the win over Forest.
"There's a few knocks and a few cuts and bruises from last night as you would expect, but overall, looking pretty good," he said.
"Scotty Parker's probably the biggest concern because he came off with a bit of an ankle injury last night so we're not sure if he's going to be fit to travel or not.
"But other than that we came through relatively unscathed, so all looking alright."
In more positive news, Fulham could welcome back midfielder Lasse Vigen Christensen, who has missed the last four matches with a hamstring injury.
"I'll need to speak to the physios after training but Lasse Christensen's been in training for this week and he's looking good so I'm expecting him to be travelling and to be back in the squad," Symons said.
Sunderland, meanwhile, will be without Lee Cattermole, Adam Johnson and Wes Brown for Saturday's match.
The club's first team coach Charlie Oatway has revealed that midfielders Cattermole and Johnson have minor problems, while defender Brown is suffering from a knock and all three are unlikely to be risked.
"Lee Cattermole and Adam Johnson are both struggling with these little niggly injuries so it is very unlikely that they will take part in the game," he said.
"Hopefully both of them will be fit to take part in training next week, but we can't take the risk and we need to make sure they're 100 per cent fit before they return.
"Wes Brown also has a bit of a knock so we will assess him on Friday, but other than that we're okay.
"We also have Liam Bridcutt back in contention which gives us a boost in the midfield area in the absence of Catts, so it is great to have him available once more."