Monday, 11 July 2011

Fulham need to add strength in depth to avoid a tough season.

Despite being in the relegation mix come Christmas, Fulham easily avoided any end of the season with a terrific run of form in 2011, however with their Europa commitments I see the season being a challenge for the London club.

After Mark Hughes's resignation, the club appointed Martin Jol, who ironically was their first choice before Hughes' appointment last year. After three years managing in Germany and his native Holland, Jol's return to English football wasn't unexpected.

Under Roy Hodgson Fulham so famously made the Europa League final, however thier league form failed naturally, however the points tally they achieved would've seen them embroilled in a relegation battle the following year. And with the League's continual strength Jol will have to add to his squad if Fulham are to balance a Europa League run with a strong Premier League campaign. With John Arne Riise expected to move from AS Roma in the next few days, Jol will be hoping its the first of many signings.

Only Chelsea and both Manchester clubs conceded less goals then Fulham last year, and with the interest in Brede Hangeland seeming to fade away, Fulham don't really need defensive reinforcements. However the club struggled to score goals last year, with Andy Johnson, Moussa Dembele and Bobby Zamora mustering just 11 goals between them, one short of their top scorer in Clint Dempsey, who again had a terrific season. With Spurs apparently willing to sell Jol could be tempted to try and re-united himself with either Jermaine Defoe or Robbie Keane, whom both are apparently growing increasingly frustrated at the lack of game time.

I don't for one second expect Fulham to be caught up in a relegation battle, however additions are needed if they to get anywhere near the top half of the table, especially with a heavy fixture list expected due to the "burden" of the Europa League.

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