Even though they dropped out of the top-flight back into the Championship at the end of last season, Fulham fans are excited ahead of the new campaign. And rightly so. They’ve got a great chance of bouncing straight back.
In fact, the bookies have them priced up as second favourites at around 8/1 behind Leeds to go up. If you want to back them, check out the promotions before placing your bet. There are top free bet offers around with many bookmakers, so feel free to grab one of those.
As it stands, there’s not been too much disruption in terms of ins and outs in the transfer market, so just how far can Fulham go next year?
Playoffs at the very least
With the parachute payments being as high as ever, Fulham will be expected to do well next season as they simply have the money to do so. Not to mention the owner’s not short of a few bob. A lot will depend on who stays and who goes, but when you look at the competition in the Championship next season, a playoff place must be the minimum for Scott Parker. He’ll be looking to win the league though, there’s no doubt about that. That’s just his mentality. He’s a winner.
When the Cottagers appointed Claudio Ranieri back in November, everyone had high expectations and thought Fulham could stay up, but it just wasn’t to be. The club has changed since then, with Scott Parker adding renewed impetus to the side, although he was unable to help at the back end of last season. However, if he can keep the likes of Tom Cairney, Ryan Sessegnon and Aleksandar Mitrovic beyond the summer, they’ll have a fantastic chance of bouncing straight back.
As mentioned, money’s not an issue for Fulham, but the players mentioned may have dreams and ambitions that Fulham simply can’t fulfil anymore. You’ve got to understand that as a fan, even if you know it’s going to hurt.
Who might leave Fulham?
Ryan Babel and Lazar Markovic have already left, as too have a few others after their contracts expired. But the keys players that Scott Parker will have trouble keeping at the club are Mitrovic, Cairney, Sessegnon, Mawson, Seri and Anguissa.
Crystal Palace have been keeping tabs on Seri and are contemplating the possibility of a loan deal. Spurs have been admirers of Sessegnon for a while now, and with the future of Danny Rose uncertain, a move for the Fulham left-back could happen at some point, especially after reports emerged that he was not going to sign a new deal with the club.
You may know that Tom Cairney recently signed a new five year deal with the club, but was that simple to add another few million to his transfer fee? Only time will tell.
Who might sign for the club?
There’s been very news on the signings front at the time of writing. We’ve still got plenty of time before the season kicks off in August, but only one name is doing the rounds at the moment. Matt Targett.
Targett was on loan at the West London club the season before last as he played a pivotal part in Fulham’s promotion back to the Premier League. Parker is looking to revamp his squad ahead of the new season, and a reasonably priced Matt Targett could be the start of a young looking Fulham side for next season. Fulham were close to signing the Southampton left-back last summer, but they couldn’t agree on a fee. They’ve said before that you don’t win anything with kids but watch this space.
So while there’s not much talk around incomings at the moment, Scott Parker is in it for the long haul and is willing to put in the hard graft to turn the club’s fortunes around. At the back end of last season, he said “I’m treating this role as a long-term role, I was at this football club for a long time as a player and obviously coming back, I believe in what I’m doing and trying to create. There have been conversations [about next season]. Clubs are planning now for pre-season. Signings, whatever that may be, I’m involved in those conversations. We’ll see where that goes.”
Fulham have a lot of rebuilding to do, but with the amount of money at their disposal, expect them to be right up there challenging in the Championship this season.