Many fans have not been happy with the style of play Scott Parker has demanded from his Fulham team so far this season.
The club were among the bookies favourites for automatic promotion at the start of this campaign
after acquiring what seemed like a devastating attacking force.
Today we arrive at the last match of the first half of this season. My pre-season favourites for automatic promotion, WBA and Leeds are currently opening up a gap at the top. I saw WBA being a major force with lots of Premier League experience, managed by a tough coach who has been there and wears the shirt, Slaven Bilic.
Leeds have been there or there about over recent years and also seem to have acquired a top boss in Marcelo Bielsa. On paper, as the bookies called it, Fulham had such a strong forward line, that any defensive frailties would be more than compensated for by the amount of goals they would score.
Unfortunately, our goal tally at 33, an average for a top half team this season, has been let down by a leaky defence where 24 have been conceded. This gives us goal difference of just 9+. Looking at table toppers WBA and Leeds, who both have a plus of 22.
A defeat this afternoon would put Leeds 15 points ahead of us. Although I still stick with the top two holding these positions at the end of the season, there will no doubt be some wobbly times ahead for them, specially Leeds during the remaining half of this campaign.
My issue is whether Scott Parker could instil a change in the “self-doubt” and “confidence is low” that he has stated about his players. Or is he actually talking about his own ability?
I personally would prefer another season in the Championship, if that was what it would take to see our club look anything like a Premier League team.
A defeat today could send us into mid-table mediocrity. On results so far, maybe that is where we should be? On the other hand, if we really want to keep our top players, then even promotion through the play-offs would do. To accomplish this, I believe Parker would need replacing.
There are many out of work coaches that have Premier League experience, here are just 8 that could possibly fit our needs. What do you think?
Mauricio Pochettino: Highly unlikely that he would drop this low?
Mark Hughes: Would we want him back?
Realistically, any of the above should have enough knowledge and pedigree to get our squad into the play-offs and a shot at promotion once again, this season.