Roy Hodgson admits Fulham will be taking a journey into the unknown when they face Amkar Perm in Thursday night’s Europa League play-off.
Due to visa requirements Hodgson has been unable to have the Russian Premier League team watched ahead of the first leg at Craven Cottage.
Amkar, the easternmost club involved in a top-flight European competition, finished fourth in the Russian championship last season but are languishing in 13th out of 16 this term.
“We know as much about Amkar as we’ve been able to find out without seeing them because we couldn’t get a visa to watch them play,” said Hodgson.
“You need too much time to get visas, at least I did after the play-off draw was made.
“We’ve seen them on video so we have quite a clear idea of what they’re like and how they play.
“But it’s a little of an unknown when you go into these European matches.
“I have strong opinions on visas. When a country is going to play in European competition there should be special rules for the team entering the country.
“Football teams should have a special place. We didn’t chose to visit Perm, but we’ve been sent there by UEFA.”
“In an ideal scenario we’d win comfortably on Thursday night and be able to rest several players for the second leg but I don’t envisage that happening,” Hodgson aded when contemplating the logistics of the return leg in Russia.
“They did fairly well last year, finishing fourth in the Russian league.
“They haven’t done so well this season but we’re talking about a bona fide team in a professional league.”