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Wolves to provide stern examination

last updated Tuesday 19th August 2014, 11:14 AM

Fulham Football Club

Interesting times at the Cottage.

After a number of years of penny pinching and stagnation the almost inevitable relegation arrived in shambolic fashion last season.

Felix Magath has overseen a radical overhaul of the squad and built a brand new team packed with Academy graduates in less than 3 months.

The call for patience is understandable, but 2 games into the Championship season and Fulham remain pointless.

With a tough run of games against Wolves, Derby and Cardiff on the horizon, things could certainly get a whole lot worse before they get better.

Whilst titles and promotion are not won and lost in August, the Magath revolution needs to start yielding some points soon to garnish promising performances.

If not, expectations for this season will be severely downgraded even before the clocks go back. Not a major problem for most long standing fans, especially if the plan is to take 2-3 years to get back to the PL but the current returns are not really consistent with the vision of the Chairman of an immediate return to the PL

The home defeat against Millwall followed a similar pattern to the opening day loss at Ipswich.

Plenty of possession and pretty short passing patterns in non threatening areas which when mixed with copious amounts of alcohol looks good but in the cold sober light of day doesn't seem quite so appealing.

The experts will tell you that one of the big differences between the PL and the championship is how ruthlessly mistakes are exploited at the highest level. Well Fulham seem to be getting punished quite heavily in the second tier.

With Hoogland on a walkabout and both Burgess and Bodurov attracted to the ball in the right back channel, a routine cross had Millwall players queuing up to profit. Schoolboy defending by a brand new back 5.

Never mind, Fulham would surely hit back - we always score at the Cottage. Even during last seasons debacle Fulham only failed to score at the Cottage on one occasion in the Premier League (0-3 v Southampton).

However, on this occasion no goals were forthcoming.

Rodallego threatened twice and a magic Pat Roberts cameo almost levelled the scores - but in reality we could have just as easily conceded a second.

The relentless nature of the Championship means we quickly get another chance to see the Whites in action on Wednesday when Wolves visit the Cottage.

Just 12 months ago FFC were 40 league places above Wolves, yet we go into the game 6 places behind the Old Gold - a swing of 46 places or half the entire football league.

With the rest of the Championship teams playing on Tuesday, in all probablity we will be in the bottom 3 come kick off time -and whilst it is too early to talk about must win games - 3 points will go a long way to soothe nerves amongst players and fans alike.

Wolves have had a mixed start to the season, beating Norwich in their opening game, before losing at Rotherham on Saturday.

However, having watched the highlights from the Rotherham game, Wolves missed enough chances to win 2 games and where unlucky with the one goal they conceded.

Kenny Jackett has moulded a strong unit with a powerful front 3 that are used to winning matches - and whilst I was very bullish (wrongly) about our chances of beating Millwall I am nervous about the outcome on Wednesday.

No doubt this game will provide another stern examination of Fulhams credentials. - the smart money is on Wolves to compound our misery, with the Bookies already shortening the price on an away win

Bachary Sako, a long time Fulham target (and exactly the profile of player we could use right now) looks a big price at 8/1 to score first and punish us further.

Despite the slow start to the season, it is certainly a refreshing change to see a fit, young and motivated Fulham side. The potential is clearly there but it is hard not to hanker after 2-3 more experienced players to join the ranks for the long road ahead.

Source Paul Browne/FulhamWeb
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