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General Category => Archive => Daily Fulham Stuff => Topic started by: whitejc on November 25, 2020, 12:21:42 AM

Title: Wednesday Fulham Stuff - 25/11/20...
Post by: whitejc on November 25, 2020, 12:21:42 AM
The defence: it’s time for pragmatism
There’s a lot of potential in our new-look back line, but it’s time to put pragmatism ahead of footballing ideals, says Mike Forrest.

Parker said about Loftus-Cheek on Sunday: “Sometimes Ruben has a tendency to let games drift him by but today he was everything we have spoken about. He showed every bit of why he is a top, top player.”

That perceptive comment could be applied to the team as a whole, and not just RLC. Come the season’s end when teams reminisce on the ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’ of the campaign gone by, we will agonise about the 3-2 defeat against Everton.

A familiar tale
Scoring two goals at home always puts a team in a strong position for earning points, but our predilection for self-abasement saw us come away with nothing. In less than 50 seconds we had taken the opportunity to inflict hurt on ourselves. A dubious cross-field ball from Tosin Adarabioyo was inadequately dealt with by Ola Aina and Bobby Decordova-Reid, with the latter playing a sublime through ball to Everton’s Richarlison before the ball was bungled in by Calvert-Lewin.

Such a start could have preceded a total collapse, but to our credit we buckled down and tried to play our way back into the game. An equaliser from a well worked move could have been a clean slate and banished the memory of the earlier mistake that helped Everton to take the lead, but it wasn’t to be. Our defensive frailty is not something that can be so easily forgotten.

Not Aina’s day
Ola Aina contributed to this recurring defensive nightmare more than most. With a youth career spent in the Chelsea academy, and two further years spent in Italy, he looks like a neophyte in the art of defending rather than someone who has been trained competently in the area – which he should be given the tutelage he has had.

All three of Everton’s goals came down his flank, and it’s no surprise as Aina actively surrendered it. For the second goal, Aina tucked so far in he was almost playing as a third centre back. So conspicuous was the amount of space that Digne had, one could be forgiven for thinking Aina was hiding. He gave acres of room for Digne to pick his cross for Calvert-Lewin to tap in. A similar scenario was repeated for their third goal. A lack of responsibility, or positional awareness, or both, but Aina consistently failed to close his man and put in a tackle.

If we are to strengthen defensively we could do well to forget about the notions of having Aina as a roving wing back. Getting him to do the basics, closing his man and tackling, will only aid our cause for defensive stability. If displays like this are to continue it looks like the astonishing £12 million pound option to sign him permanently, negotiated by Tony Khan, will be left unredeemed.

Know your role
Aside from focusing on Aina’s deficiencies, it should go without saying that the whole defence needs drilling. Bobby Zamora once remarked that Roy Hodgson’s training sessions were “boring”, but it was this constant drilling that brought defensive rigidity and overall success. Parker must be asking himself how Doucouré was able to waltz into the six-yard box, unmarked, to head Everton’s third goal home.

It is the third game in a row that the same back four has started together, but opportunities to prove their cohesiveness as a unit are slowly drifting away match by match. A 91st minute winner for West Ham saw the chance of a second successive clean sheet slip away. Against Everton, there was a reversion to bad habits and the oft-seen defensive capitulation.

For a back four that struggles with the basics of defending, the pressure they’re under is further exacerbated by the instruction to be ball-playing defenders. Perhaps it is time for Parker to help his defensive unit out by yielding the demand of the latter in exchange for solidity in the former, especially given the next three games: Leicester, Liverpool and Man City.
Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff - 25/11/20...
Post by: whitejc on November 25, 2020, 12:22:46 AM
Fulham hoping to admit up to 1,500 fans at Craven Cottage if London placed under Tier 2 restrictions

Fulham are unlikely to be able to welcome the permitted 2,000 fans at Craven Cottage should London be placed into Tier 2 when supporters return next month.

The Government confirmed on Monday that from next week, supporters will be allowed back into sporting events in areas under Tier 1 and 2 restrictions, with the capital expected to be placed into the latter.

London's clubs would be permitted to admit 2,000 supporters under the guidelines, but, due to a number of factors, Fulham are working towards admitting between 1,000-1,500 fans next month.

With access to the ground only possible from one street, the Cottagers face bigger challenges than many other London clubs, who can admit supporters from a number of entrances.

Furthermore, with no Riverside Stand to use while it is redeveloped and the main Johnny Haynes Stand having cramped concourses and largely been used by broadcasters and other media, supporters will be restricted to the Putney and Hammersmith ends.

The club, who made the decision not to offer season ticket renewals for this season, will run a ballot system - initially for those who held a season ticket last term - to allocate tickets for upcoming games.

Following Sunday’s 3-2 defeat by Everton, Scott Parker's side do not play at home again now until they welcome defending Premier League champions Liverpool to Craven Cottage on the weekend of December 12/13.
Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff - 25/11/20...
Post by: whitejc on November 25, 2020, 12:24:03 AM
De Cordova-Reid: Share Out Goals


Bobby De Cordova-Reid rued a lacklustre first half in Fulham’s attempts to salvage a point against Everton.

The Jamaican international held his hands up for his part in the concession of the first goal and thinks should the mistakes be cut out; the points will come.

“I think being 3-1 down in the Premier League trying to score four goals to win the game is always going to be difficult,” he reflected. “I think we’ve got to learn from it and go into other games defensively better to not concede easy goals like that. We hope heading into Leicester we can solve that.

“It was a bit crazy because they scored 40 seconds in through a mistake by me. We knew what we could create, and our heads didn’t drop. Silly mistakes led to two of their goals. If we can cut those out, we’ll be fine.”

It was his equaliser that swung the game back into the balance through a beautifully worked one-two with Tom Cairney, a move that sums up his game nicely.

De Cordova-Reid has had a handy return so far this season notching up four goals, he knows the Premier League is not a forgiving place to rely on one man for goals.

“I really enjoyed that one,” he continued. “That’s part of my game. Intricate quick play around the box. I do pride myself on creating chances and I want to be converting them. I think I can still offer more to the team.

“We can’t rely on Mitro to get all our goals. We know he’s good in these areas and can get goals, but we can’t rely on that in the Premier League, we need to share the goals around, but we are doing that at the moment.”

The 27-year-old feels hard done by that Scott Parker’s side haven’t picked up at least a point in the last two games. Fulham will be looking to channel a similar performance of that against West Brom when they head to the King Power Stadium.

“I think the last two games are ones where we should have picked up at least a point in both of them. It is frustrating on one hand and I think we are working towards that. We will be okay in that sense, the sooner we get to grips with slight improvements the better.

“We can create chances and we can score goals. If we play like we did against West Brom where we defended tightly as a unit then we can get something from the Leicester game.”

He recently announced on his Instagram that he and his partner are expecting a baby in March 2021. Congratulations from us, Bobby!
Title: Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff - 25/11/20...
Post by: whitejc on November 25, 2020, 12:25:44 AM

Cottage Talk Post Match Show: Fulham Lose 3-2 To Everton

Take a listen to a podcast that focuses on Fulham Football Club.

This is our post match show of Fulham’s 3-2 loss to Everton and joining the show for this episode was Yannis Tjanetis and Emilio Di Nello.

You can also listen to the show by following this link...