‘We were too emotional’- Marco Silva has his say on Fulham’s EFL Cup semi-final exit to Liverpool

Marco Silva felt his Fulham players were too emotional at the start of the second leg of their 3-2 aggregate defeat against Liverpool in the EFL Cup semi-final.

Fulham drew the game 1-1 at Craven Cottage after a second-half Issa Diop goal cancelled out Luis Diaz’ early strike on the night, but it was not enough to help Fulham to their first-ever League Cup final.

The Whites were left with a mountain to climb after just 11 minutes when Diaz got the better of Timothy Castagne and sent a deflected shot beyond Bernd Leno following their 2-1 loss at Anfield in the first leg.

“The first 30 minutes were difficult for us,” said Silva.

“We were probably too emotional and more nervous than Liverpool, and we were not able to keep possession like we normally do – to make three or four passes between us. We lost many balls when we were building our attacks or when we could counterattack.

“We wanted to play better tonight than we did. In a semi-final, sometimes it is not easy to play good football or the football that you planned.”

Joao Palhinha had already squandered a presentable chance from a corner before Diaz struck, and Andreas Pereira hit the post early in the second half as Fulham tried to pull off a comeback.

Diop’s close-range finish on 76 minutes created a chaotic end to the contest, but Silva’s side were not able to force the tie to extra time.

“We were not ruthless enough and Liverpool are in the final,” said the Fulham boss. “The first time Liverpool were a little bit more dangerous, they scored.

“They were much calmer than us. For them it was just another game, for most of our players it is new to play semi-finals of this competition. I think the club is going to grow in these kind of moments.

“Any club that is not used to being at this stage is going to grow. For the players to develop and get more used to it, to not be so nervous and so emotional at the beginning of these type of games, comes with experience of these type of games.

“Of course, I want more. You know my ambition and the players do as well. What we have to do is to keep working really hard to keep growing as a football club.”

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