Fulham enjoyed a yo-yo promotion to the Premier League in that they yo’d up and then yo’d back down again after one season – gaining just 26 points from their 38 games. They spent over £100million on new talent, much of it now sold on due to relegation. Some big-money buys remain and Phil Hay, in a fan discussion on The Athletic, isn’t convinced by how Fulham boss Scott Parker is marshalling them.
There is little doubting that Fulham went the whole nine yards and emptied their gunbelts in buying to stay in the Premier League. Big money buys in Andre Anguissa (£22.4million – Olympique Marseille), Jean Michael Serri (£27million – OGC Nice) and Aleksandar Mitrovic (£22.2million – Newcastle) were the marquee buys with only Mitrovic still at Craven Cottage.
Seri is on a season-long loan deal at Galatasaray and Anguissa on a similar season away at La Liga side Villareal. It’s a different Fulham side now but they are still talented to the gills. Scott Parker’s side has been strengthened in the January window with the arrivals of Michael Hector (£5.3million – Chelsea), Ivan Cavaleiro (£10.6million – Wolves) and Bobby Reid (£8million – Cardiff) heading to Craven Cottage on permanent deals.
That trio, plus the likes of Mitrovic, Tom Cairney and Harry Arter should be enough of a unit to really take the Championship by the throat and bounce back to instant promotion ala Newcastle United. That’s not looking the case at the moment, although the Cottagers are definitely in the mix in 3rd and only three points and a few goals from the automatic places.
Commenting in response to a question from Ross L about whether he thought Leeds had what it takes to get out of a rammed top six that all drop points, Hay commented about Fulham. He said that they had “been destroyed by Barnsley” before going on to say that he isn’t convinced that “Scott Parker is the right fit there.”
As Hay admitted later in his response, Fulham has an excellent squad but he went on to say that “the more I hear about them, the more it sounds like he isn’t getting the best out of them tactically.” With what he has at his disposal, you’d expect Fulham to be in one of the automatic promotion spots and a side that others are chasing.