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Fulham midfielder Neeskens Kebano is having fun

last updated Friday 28th January 2022, 12:57 PM

Fulham Football Club

Midfielder Neeskens Kebano<
Fulham midfielder
Neeskens Kebano
Neeskens Kebano
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Having been turned into the most prolific attack in Europe by Marco Silva, Fulham’s forwards are having the times of their lives.

The Championship leaders have scored 22 goals in their last four games, including a 7-0 thrashing of Reading and consecutive 6-2 wins before a 3-2 victory at Stoke last weekend.

In 27 league matches this season, they have plundered an extraordinary 73 goals at a ratio of 2.7 goals per game. With a goal difference of +48 and 19 matches still to play they are on course to break the all-time English record of +79 set by Manchester City four seasons ago.

No team in Europe has found the net more times than Fulham this season and their freescoring form has left them looking odds-on for a swift return to the Premier League.

Aleksandar Mitrovic is leading the way. The Serbian has 27 goals in 25 appearances and is on course break the Championship record most goals scored in a season, set only last year by Ivan Toney with Brentford.

But it is not just Mitrovic racking up the goals.

Both Neeskens Kebano and Fabio Carvalho have bagged four in as many games so it is no wonder Fulham players are on cloud nine.

“Is this the most fun I’ve had in a forward line? Yes, probably,” Kebano tells Standard Sport.

“We are enjoying it a lot, it is a good thing we can split the goals between us, too.

“Mitrovic has obviously scored the most, but apart from Mitrovic there are goals from every player which is something very good.”

Mitrovic is a cut above in the Championship and, after managing just three goals as Fulham were relegated last season, he is now making mincemeat of opposition defences.

“You know that having Mitro by your side from the beginning of the season you’ll already have at least 20 goals,” says Kebano, a DR Conga international who joined Fulham from Genk in 2016. “I have known him since playing in Belgium, he has always been a goalscorer but he has improved and scores even more.”

Since taking over last summer Silva has, Kebano says, built on the work done by Scott Parker and taken the club to another level, with a relentless focus embedded in the group.

“Regarding those two, the big difference is that the gaffer is much more demanding than the previous one,” he says.

“He keeps you focused from the first minute to the last, not even of games but training sessions. Slowly you get the habit of always being focused and doing the right things. That gets you in that mood every time on the field.

“He pushes you every time, calls you in the office to show videos whether it’s individual meetings or with the strikers as a group.

“We had a lot of the possession under Scott Parker, which is the same now but we attack even more. We can counter attack and we can also keep the ball for a few minutes and attack at the right time. They are similar but not the same.”

Silva, though, will face the same challenge as Parker should he return Fulham to the promised land of the Premier League.

The Whites have too much financial clout for their Championship rivals but keeping a place in the top-flight is a different story.

The bulk of their squad were part of that relegation last season and feel they still have a point to prove at the highest level.

“Of course [I feel I have unfinished business],” says Kebano, who was sent back to the Championship on loan with Middlesbrough for the second half of last season. “But it is not only for me, it is for most of us still in the group.

“We have to focus on what we have to achieve first and then we’ll see where we will be, if it is the Premier League it would be something good.”

Almost two years after their last promotion, Kebano and his teammates feel like far more rounded and dangerous players heading back towards the Premier League.

Kebano already has more than double the number of goals he scored across his last full Championship campaign.

“As a player you are always improving and learning, mentally you grow. I am a different player,” says the 29-year-old.

“It’s down to the manager you have and what they teach you and also how you get the information they give you.

“They give you all keys and you have to put the right one in the door, I think I have been able to put some good keys in the right doors.”

Fulham face Blackpool tomorrow with many wondering whether they could hit eight past someone before the end of the season.

“I would rather win eight times 1-0 than one time 8-0,” laughs Kebano. The way things are going, you would not put it past them.

Source Jack Rosser at London Evening Standard
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