Author Topic: Saturday Fulham Stuff - 20/02/21...  (Read 910 times)

Offline whitejc

  • Administrator
  • Mornington Crescent
  • *
  • Posts: 67858
  • I'm tall for my height
Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff - 20/02/21...
« Reply #20 on: February 20, 2021, 09:51:16 AM »
Lookman confident Fulham can survive

Ademola Lookman believes Fulham can climb out of the Premier League relegation zone and beat the drop this season.

Scott Parker’s side are currently six points from safety and face bottom of the table Sheffield United in what could prove a pivotal fixture this evening. Lookman, speaking in a wide-ranging interview with the Guardian, has been encouraged by Fulham’s recent displays and believes the squad has the quality to put together a strong run in the second half of the season.

Lookman, who spoke moving about a tough childhood where he faced often not having enough food, revealed that Parker was a key factor in persuading him to return to London last summer.

“Scott Parker spoke to me a lot and I liked what he wanted from me and where he saw me in this team. I’m always thinking of being better and where the team is. But the highlight for me would probably be Leicester away. We won 2-1 and that mattered more than anything.”

His missed penalty in stoppage time at West Ham gets a mention, of course.

“When that incident happened I couldn’t even describe the devastation. I can only try to atone for that error. That was a key thing which people told me after that moment happened – it is about how I come back and use it to turn it into something positive.”

Lookman is insistent that the Cottagers can move out of the bottom three.

“Most definitely. We all believe it’s about us sticking to the task and working hard every day. We can do it and my focus is to help keep the team in the Premier League.”



https://hammyend.com/index.php/2021/02/lookman-confident-fulham-can-survive/

Offline whitejc

  • Administrator
  • Mornington Crescent
  • *
  • Posts: 67858
  • I'm tall for my height
Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff - 20/02/21...
« Reply #21 on: February 20, 2021, 10:16:42 AM »
Fulham's lack of goals will prove their downfall at the end of the season unless they gain a clinical edge - Scott Parker's team have the fourth worst tally in the Premier League, but are ranked NINTH for chances created despite their strikers' woes

    Fulham remain stuck in the relegation zone and are struggling to score goals
    Scott Parker's men have netted 20 this term - the fourth worst tally in the league
    The numbers suggest a different story, however, with Fulham creating chances
    If they fail to take more of them, the stark lack of goals will prove their downfall

If Fulham suffer relegation then we won’t have to search too hard for the reasons why.

In short: goals. Or rather - a lack of them.

Their 20 strikes so far represents the fourth worst tally in the Premier League - behind Sheffield United, West Brom - who occupy the other two relegation slots - and Burnley.
 

If Fulham are to suffer relegation, it will be their stark lack of goals that proves their downfall

The damning statistic is inescapable and will prove the Cottagers’ downfall if they are consigned to an instant return to the Championship.

Yet, dig a little deeper, and the numbers suggest a rather different story.

Their lack of goals is there in black and white, of course. The numbers don’t lie.
 

Fulham's 20 strikes netted so far this season is the fourth-worst tally in the Premier League

A glimmer of promise for Fulham...
     
Per 90 min 
  League average 
  League ranking
Touches in the attacking third     
161.6 
  160.6 
  10th
Chances created     
9.0 
  8.8 
  8th
Big chances created     
1.2 
  1.3 
  12th
Shots inside the box     
5.6 
  5.8 
  10th
Successful crosses       
22.4% 
  18.7% 
  2nd

But there has been a misconception that Fulham’s problems in front of goal are a byproduct of a pragmatic approach employed by head coach Scott Parker.

Possession is king for the Cottagers head coach; it forms the basis of his strategic principles.

But assertions that his possession-based approach isn’t conducive to scoring goals certainly aren’t backed up by the numbers.

Fulham are ranked ninth for chances created so far this season; producing an average of 9.0 chances per match - above the league average of 8.6.
 

The club rank ninth for chances created this term, with an average of 9.0 carved out per game

They are ranked 12th and 13th, respectively, for shots and excepted goals - and are 12th for 'big chances' created.

Their performance so far this season in terms of creating goalscoring chances indicates they should be significantly higher up the table.

Indeed the projected expected points table based on expected goals created and conceded in each game would leave Fulham comfortable in 14th place with a tally of 28 points.

That, of course, is neither here nor there for Parker - who knows those statistics will count for nothing at the end season.
 

Boss Scott Parker knows the promising statistics will count for nothing at the end of the season

Lack of goals will be Fulham's downfall...
     
Total 
  League average 
  League ranking
Shots     
9.0 
  8.9 
  8th
Expected goals     
27.7 
  30.8 
  13th
Goals scored     
20 
  32.3 
  17th
Expected goals over performance     
-7.7 
  1.4 
  18th
Shot conversion rate %       
7.2% 
  11.5% 
  19th
               
But opportunities, clear cut ones at that, are being created by Fulham. Taking those chances, however, is proving the problem.

Fulham went into the season with the belief that Aleksandar Mitrovic would provide sufficient firepower to stay up.

There was enough evidence to suggest the faith was warranted.

He scored 24 goals in all competitions for Fulham last season and his 11 in Fulham’s previous Premier League campaign provided hope the Serbian could carry the club’s goal threat.
 

There was plenty of faith placed in Aleksandar Mitrovic - who has scored just twice this season

But Mitrovic has scored just two Premier League goals this season - both in the defeat to Leeds in September.

The fact Bobby Decordova-Reid is their top goalscorer with five tells its own story.

Josh Maja’s arrival on loan from Bordeaux has raised hope of enough improvement in the goal tally for Fulham to make up the current six point gap to 17th placed Newcastle.

If the Nigerian can continue his promising start then perhaps Fulham have a chance.
 

Josh Maja joined on loan from Bordeaux and will be expected to help Fulham score more goals

Regardless of how this season finishes, Parker has already enhanced his reputation as one of the brightest young managers in England.

Of course, that will be no consolation to the Fulham boss of the worst does happen.

But if they are relegated, it wasn’t like they didn’t have the chances to stay up.



https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-9281103/Fulhams-lack-goals-prove-downfall-unless-gain-clinical-edge.html

Offline whitejc

  • Administrator
  • Mornington Crescent
  • *
  • Posts: 67858
  • I'm tall for my height
Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff - 20/02/21...
« Reply #22 on: February 20, 2021, 10:22:37 AM »
Ademola Lookman: 'I had to make decisions that didn't put my family at risk'


Ademola Lookman, on loan at Fulham from RB Leipzig, was preparing to go to college aged 16 before Charlton intervened. Photograph: Tom Jenkins/The Guardian

Fulham forward discusses his upbringing, Hasenhüttl’s tip to raise his game and how a substitute appearance changed his life

Life was tough growing up,” Ademola Lookman says simply as he remembers his childhood in Peckham. “There were some nights when I didn’t have … how can I say this? I didn’t have the best of food. I also didn’t have certain things when I was younger. It was a real struggle for my mum and she had to take care of all of us. She did the best she could and she made sure there was food on the table and that I had clothes to wear. Everything I could ask of my mum, she gave me. I was happy but, as you get older, you realise how difficult it must have been for her.”

The 23-year-old Lookman is one of the most interesting and talented young footballers in England. He was ignored by all London’s professional clubs until the age of 16 as he followed an unusual journey through football. Early in 2018, having played for Charlton before moving to Everton and the Premier League, Lookman’s “stubbornness” was questioned by Sam Allardyce when he insisted on joining RB Leipzig in the Bundesliga rather than being loaned to Derby County in the Championship.

Lookman scored memorable goals on his debuts for Everton and Leipzig but he is now back in London and on loan from the German club to Fulham. He has illuminated Premier League games this season, amid the difficulties Fulham have faced, while also suffering from a botched attempt at a Panenka penalty which devastated him briefly. But his calm resilience was forged during those testing times in Peckham.

“Most definitely,” Lookman says. “A lot of it was to do with being the only boy as well. I was willing to step up and do something for my family. I wanted to make my mum and my sisters proud. That was definitely one of my objectives – and it still is today. Both of my parents are Nigerian and my two older sisters were also born in Nigeria. So I was the only one out of us to be born here. My dad and my one sister were in Nigeria and so my mum was bringing up me and my other sister all on her own. She was working all kinds of jobs – cleaning jobs and anything she could take. She was always looking for work.”

Football offered an escape and Lookman savoured the pleasure it gave him. “I liked playing football because I was good at it but also because I was having a lot of fun with my friends. Football gave me a new sense of energy and enthusiasm. It was freedom too. We would play in different places around south-east London and beating teams in certain areas was a big thing. I grew up around Peckham and Camberwell and there were so many estates there.

“Everybody knows the talent that comes out of south-east London. Growing up, a lot of my friends were just as talented as me. To this day I question why we didn’t all make it. As I got older my love for football grew stronger and stronger. I thought that maybe I could make it.”


Ademola Lookman scores in the Fulham win at Leicester that he considers the highlight of the season so far. Photograph: Ryan Browne/BPI/Rex/Shutterstock

Lookman was not spotted by any of the London academies and so he played Sunday league football for a park team in Lambeth called Waterloo FC. He also avoided the dangers facing so many boys on the London streets. “Of course there’s pressure from lots of areas. But, even as a kid, you need to make the decisions that don’t put you or your family at risk. I was able to differentiate right from wrong and hanging around with the wrong crowd and going around with the right people was key for me. I took school very seriously and for my GCSEs I got five As, four Bs and one C. It definitely helped focus me.”

Was he worried that his dream of playing professionally seemed to recede with every passing year? “I was only concerned when I turned 16 because in school you start to apply for college. It really hit me then – this may be the route I need to go down. That was when I thought: ‘I need a breakthrough.’ And that’s when God came through and I got my opportunity.”

Lookman was selected to play for London Counties in a friendly against Charlton’s academy team in 2013. “I started that game on the bench but someone got injured and they put me on. We lost the game 1-0 but Charlton liked what they saw and they invited me back.”

A less measured account is that Lookman dazzled that afternoon and Charlton were incredulous he had not been snapped up by any other club. “I felt like a door opened that day,” he concedes in his quiet way. “But I didn’t feel that until the moment when, after the game, they said they were going to offer me a scholarship. My mum was shocked as she thought that I was definitely going to college. The offer from Charlton was just out of the blue. Those were happy years for me at Charlton. Nothing but progress from the under-18s to the under-23s to the first team.”


Ademola Lookman in action for Charlton against Leeds in the Championship in December 2015. Photograph: ProSports/Shutterstock

Karl Robinson was his manager at Charlton and, believing in Lookman’s potential, he took the teenager to watch Dele Alli play for Spurs in the Champions League at Wembley. Alli had played for Robinson at MK Dons and had also blossomed late in junior football. “I think [Robinson] saw a lot of similarities in our situations so he wanted me to see Dele at the highest level and show what was possible. I had a lot of chats with Karl Robinson and he gave me so much confidence. He taught me to always believe in myself.”

Did he feel he would play Champions League football one day when he watched Alli? “Yes, most definitely. I had watched those games on TV but to be there in person made it very real.”

In January 2017, Everton bought Lookman for £11m after, as he recalls, “Steve Walsh, their director of football at the time, came to watch me a few times and he really liked what he saw. I spoke to him and to Ronald Koeman [then Everton’s manager] and they gave me the confidence that this was the right club to join.”

Lookman started with a bang. He came off the bench against Manchester City and scored in Everton’s 4-0 victory. “It was a crazy day. The next day I was meant to play for the under-23s but because I scored they said they wanted me to train just with the first team. My family were there so it was a very big day for them. But they went back to London and, just like anybody away from their family, I was lonely sometimes. But I understood that you need to sacrifice some things for football.”

Six months later Lookman and three of his clubmates, including Dominic Calvert-Lewin, were part of the England squad which won the Under-20 World Cup in South Korea. That victory still resonates for Lookman and it intensified his hunger to succeed. When he felt he was not getting enough first-team opportunities at Everton he chose to move to Leipzig on loan in January 2018 – so resisting Allardyce’s urging, as his new manager, that he accept a seemingly guaranteed place in Derby’s team.

“Everton wanted me to play my football in England. But I had different ideas. I wanted to go to Germany to embrace a new challenge with a top side in Leipzig and learn a different style of football. A lot had to do with the platform Leipzig have and the football they were playing.

“Ralph Rangnick [Leipzig’s director of football] had been to watch a few of my games at Charlton. He’d known of me for a long time. So I spoke to him and to Ralph Hasenhüttl [then Leipzig’s manager] and they were confident I would do well in the Bundesliga. I had that same belief.”


Ademola Lookman celebrates after scoring for RB Leipzig against Wolfsburg in May 2018. Photograph: Filip Singer/EPA

It did not take long for Lookman to match that conviction. He rose from the bench on his debut and jinked his way through the Borussia Mönchengladbach defence to score a sublime late winner. He stresses that Hasenhüttl “helped me a lot. I remember there was a time where he told me I needed to be more selfish. I looked at my game and I was like: ‘Yes, he’s right.’”

Lookman was still only 21 when Leipzig turned the loan into a permanent transfer on a five-year deal in the summer of 2019. He did not play regularly last season and so a new loan deal to Fulham in September 2020 offered the chance of much more consistent football in the Premier League. “Scott Parker [the Fulham manager] spoke to me a lot and I liked what he wanted from me and where he saw me in this team.”

Lookman has played 21 games for Fulham, scoring three goals, and his loan has been a clear success with outstanding performances against Spurs and Leicester. “I’m always thinking of being better and where the team is. But the highlight for me would probably be Leicester away. We won 2-1 and that mattered more than anything.”

Lookman’s lowest moment came in November when, with Fulham having just conceded an injury-time goal to trail 1-0 against West Ham, he stepped up to take a penalty. It was to be the last kick but, rather than smacking the ball into the net, Lookman attempted a Panenka penalty. Instead of chipping the ball over Lukasz Fabianski, he scooped it weakly into the goalkeeper’s arms.


Devastation for Lookman in November after his injury-time Panenka penalty is saved by West Ham’s Lukasz Fabianski. Photograph: Catherine Ivill/Reuters

“When that incident happened I couldn’t even describe the devastation,” Lookman says. “I can only try to atone for that error. That was a key thing which people told me after that moment happened – it is about how I come back and use it to turn it into something positive.”

Did he hear the predictable rumblings against him on social media? “I was aware of it but I didn’t pay any mind to it.”

Lookman has responded impressively and last Sunday he helped Fulham beat Everton 2-0 away. The club are third from bottom, and six points behind Newcastle who are just outside the relegation zone. But on Saturday night, at home, they have a chance to narrow the gap when they play Sheffield United.

Can Fulham avoid relegation? “Most definitely,” Lookman says. “We all believe it’s about us sticking to the task and working hard every day. We can do it and my focus is to help keep the team in the Premier League.”

As much as he has loved his time at Leipzig does he feel, remembering his Peckham days, that he has returned home? “Yes, kind of,” Lookman says as his face lights up. “But so much is to do with football. Playing football, wherever I am, makes me feel at home.”



https://www.theguardian.com/football/2021/feb/20/ademola-lookman-i-had-to-make-decisions-that-didnt-put-my-family-at-risk


Offline whitejc

  • Administrator
  • Mornington Crescent
  • *
  • Posts: 67858
  • I'm tall for my height
Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff - 20/02/21...
« Reply #23 on: February 20, 2021, 12:36:24 PM »
Newcastle United fans face nervous night as Fulham prepare for 'must-win' relegation clash

Newcastle United's cushion over the relegation zone could be reduced to just three points if Fulham beat basement side Sheffield United on Saturday night

Newcastle United fans are facing a nervous Saturday night as relegation rivals Fulham prepare for their 'must-win' clash with Sheffield United.

The Magpies cushion over the relegation zone currently stands at six points, but this could be reduced to three by the time Steve Bruce's side take to the field at Old Trafford on Sunday evening.

Former United midfielder Scott Parker admits the Cottagers focus right now is reeling in Newcastle following their midweek draw at Burnley.

Fulham have only won three league matches all season, but the bookmakers have made them the odds-on favourites to earn victory over basement side Sheffield United in the 8pm kick-off.

When asked by reporters whether it was must-win match for both teams, Parker said: “I think that’s fair to say. I think both teams are going to want to do all they can to win the game.

“There’s 14 or 15 games left and we’ve picked four points up this week, which was always going to be a tough week, to now which is a tough game with Sheffield at the weekend and I think with both teams it’s evident.

"I’ve said it for the last few weeks now, every game that we go into now we want to try and win the game and that’s going to come on Saturday.”

Magpies head coach Bruce was asked about Fulham's confidence in overturning the deficit in his pre-match press conference on Friday.

He answered: "Let's see where they are. If they are confident let's see where they are at the end of the season.

"You have to quietly get on with the job and get points on the board and that's what we'll do."



https://www.chroniclelive.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/newcastle-united-fulham-relegation-19879296

Offline whitejc

  • Administrator
  • Mornington Crescent
  • *
  • Posts: 67858
  • I'm tall for my height
Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff - 20/02/21...
« Reply #24 on: February 20, 2021, 12:38:35 PM »
Ademola Lookman opens up about the 'devastation' of botched Panenka penalty against West Ham as on-loan Fulham forward insists they can 'most definitely' avoid relegation despite being six points adrift from safety

    Ademola Lookman missed the infamous penalty against West Ham in November
    But he's responded with strong performances as Fulham look to avoid the drop
    Lookman has scored three times since making his loan switch from RB Leipzig
    He scored his first goal for Fulham against tonight's opponents, Sheffield United
    Lookman is confident of Premier League survival despite being six points adrift

Ademola Lookman admitted that he was devastated when he missed the infamous Panenka penalty against West Ham, but he's now focused on keeping Fulham in the Premier League after a string of good performances.

The penalty incident occurred back in November, when a struggling Fulham side were looking to snatch a late point against West Ham - this after Tomas Soucek had scored what he thought was a 91st-minute winner.

Lookman stepped up, but instead of putting his laces through it, a weak Panenka attempt went straight into the hands of Lukasz Fabianski.
 

Ademola Lookman was left devastated after his failed Panenka penalty against West Ham

It garnered plenty of negative media attention, not just because of the manner in which he attempted to take it, but because of the match situation. 

In an interview with The Guardian, Lookman said that it a was a low point for him, but he added that he was determined to put it right.

'When that incident happened I couldn't even describe the devastation,' Lookman said.

'I can only try to atone for that error. That was a key thing which people told me after that moment happened – it is about how I come back and use it to turn it into something positive.'
 

The penalty would've given struggling Fulham a much-needed stoppage-time point

And while the results haven't always been going Fulham's way, he's played a big part in his side's improved performances. They've only lost once away from home since then - a 2-0 defeat to Manchester City.

There is, though, still a lot for the west Londoners to do if they want to stay in the Premier League. They currently sit in 18th - six points behind Newcastle. But is Lookman confident of keeping them up?

'Most definitely,' Lookman said.

'We all believe it's about us sticking to the task and working hard every day. We can do it and my focus is to help keep the team in the Premier League.'
 

Lookman's first goal for Fulham was against Sheffield United in October - tonight's opponents

The 23-year-old has scored three times for the side since he joined the side from RB Leipzig back in September - his first coming against tonight's opponents Sheffield United.

He said that his best moment though was when he scored against Leicester. It happened just three weeks after the penalty miss - a moment that went a long way towards redeeming himself. 

'I'm always thinking of being better and where the team is. But the highlight for me would probably be Leicester away.

'We won 2-1 and that mattered more than anything.'
 

Lookman said his goal in Fulham's victory against Leicester as his best moment this season



https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-9281297/Lookman-admits-devastation-missed-Panenka-penalty-hes-confident-helping-Fulham-up.html

Offline whitejc

  • Administrator
  • Mornington Crescent
  • *
  • Posts: 67858
  • I'm tall for my height
Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff - 20/02/21...
« Reply #25 on: February 20, 2021, 12:39:57 PM »
Chris Wilder could turn to new-look Sheffield United strikeforce at Fulham, with kids on bench

The Blades boss has selection issues to contend with at the back but he may also look to freshen up his strikeforce after a blunt showing at West Ham

Chris Wilder will have had plenty to ponder these past few days before informing his players of his plans for tonight's match at Fulham.

The Blades are now in must-win territory after Monday's defeat at West Ham has left them 14 points behind Newcastle and with only 14 matches remaining.

They must pick up all three points at Craven Cottage and hope Steve Bruce's side lose at Old Trafford tomorrow if they are to stay in the relegation fight.

Here are the pre-match talking points and things to keep an eye on in tonight's fixture against Scott Parker's side.
Who comes in for Egan?

Chris Wilder has a few options to cover for the injured central defender.

The most obvious is Phil Jagielka in a straight swap. The last time the 38-year-old started a game away from home was Manchester United at Old Trafford, where the former England international was outstanding.

He used his experience well on a night where United, similar to how they will be tonight, were really up against it in terms of team selection.

Also able to come in to the manager's thinking is Ethan Ampadu, who filled in at centre half for Egan against Leeds earlier in the season and did well. That would mean Kean Bryan or Enda Stevens coming in on the left of the three and if it's the latter, then a change at left wing back, too.

This is perhaps the least likely, with Wilder wanting to keep disruption to team selection to a minimum at the moment.
A change up top?

Billy Sharp and David McGoldrick led the line at the London Stadium but United needed more in the attacking third than what they got on Monday night.

Sharp worked hard, while McGoldrick had a couple of openings, one of which was a header at 1-0 in the second half that he should have done better with and found the net.

With that in mind, Wilder could look to freshen up his attack and select a new-look strikeforce.

Oli McBurnie and Oliver Burke led the line in the previous league match, at home to Chelsea, and could be a good bet to be reinstated here.

David McGoldrick being employed in a role behind two strikers, in John Fleck's absence, could also be something the manager has thought about this week. Although he has often finished a match with that approach, Wilder is yet to start like this.

Burke's pace and McBurnie's ability to lead the line could be key to United having more of an attacking threat than they did last time out.
Another youngster on the bench?

Keep an eye on the team news when it is announced at 7pm, as there could well be another youngster from the academy on the bench.

Wilder will be leaving seven senior players at home tonight, meaning he will have only 18 in the matchday squad. That leaves two places spare on the bench and they could well be filled again by some of the youngsters from the academy.

Five have got the nod since the turn of the year to make the numbers up and gain valuable experience and on Monday night it was Frankie Maguire who travelled.

The 17-year-old was the only midfielder on the bench and, with only Osborn, Lundstram and Norwood the available players in that department, Maguire could well get the call again. Midfielders Zak Brunt and Iliman Ndiaye have also featured in recent weeks and one of these three may get get another taste of first team life tonight.
No mistakes

Wilder reiterated this week that individual errors are killing their chances of getting results and they have to cut these out if they are to harbour any hopes of victory tonight.

Oliver Norwood's sloppy pass on the stroke of half-time handed West Ham the initiative on Monday. Wilder has called for a mistake-free performance as his side are not far off last-chance saloon.

All eyes will be on this performance and whether or not his players can deliver such a display.
Huge challenge

While on paper a match against a side which has been stuck in relegation trouble all season presents a huge opportunity to keep their season alive, it will also be a huge challenge given the team selection issues.

For the first time this season, Wilder will be without the four best players in the team - the core of the side in Egan, O'Connell, Fleck and Berge.

At no point has the Blades boss fielded a team without at least one of these players in the starting line-up this season.

Injuries have hurt this team and the loss of key players at key times is a contributing factor to their league position. It will be interesting to see how they cope without their four main actors.



https://www.examinerlive.co.uk/sport/football/news/chris-wilder-could-turn-new-19879163


Offline whitejc

  • Administrator
  • Mornington Crescent
  • *
  • Posts: 67858
  • I'm tall for my height
Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff - 20/02/21...
« Reply #26 on: February 20, 2021, 02:13:24 PM »
Fulham's Lookman: How a substitute appearance changed my life
The 23-year-old has recalled his journey to stardom and looks forward to getting better with every opportunity he is given to showcase his potential

Fulham forward Ademola Lookman has revealed how a substitute appearance changed his life for the good and kick-started his football career.

The 23-year-old teamed up with the Craven Cottage outfit last summer on a season-long loan from Bundesliga side RB Leipzig and has been enjoying rave reviews since his arrival at the club.

The Nigerian star has scored three breathtaking goals for Scott Parker's men this season and provided three assists in 21 Premier League appearances, amid other dazzling displays.

The forward began his career with Charlton Athletic before joining Everton, where he spent two years but his struggle for game-time made him leave Goodison Park for life in Germany.

Lookman has recollected the moment Charlton gave him an opportunity to team up with them after impressing as a substitute in a friendly and why he chose to move to leave England to continue his development.

“I started that game on the bench but someone got injured and they put me on. We lost the game 1-0 but Charlton liked what they saw and they invited me back,” Lookman told the Guardian.

“I felt like a door opened that day but I didn’t feel that until the moment when, after the game, they said they were going to offer me a scholarship. My mum was shocked as she thought that I was definitely going to college.

“The offer from Charlton was just out of the blue. Those were happy years for me at Charlton. Nothing but progress from the under-18s to the under-23s to the first team.

“Everton wanted me to play my football in England. But I had different ideas. I wanted to go to Germany to embrace a new challenge with a top side in Leipzig and learn a different style of football. A lot had to do with the platform Leipzig have and the football they were playing.

“Ralph Rangnick [Leipzig’s director of football] had been to watch a few of my games at Charlton. He’d known of me for a long time. So I spoke to him and to Ralph Hasenhüttl [then Leipzig’s manager] and they were confident I would do well in the Bundesliga. I had that same belief.

"Hasenhuttl helped me a lot. I remember there was a time where he told me I needed to be more selfish. I looked at my game and I was like: ‘Yes, he’s right.’”

Lookman, born to Nigerian parents, has recollected his journey to stardom and the contribution of his mother to his success.

“There were some nights when I didn’t have … how can I say this? I didn’t have the best food. I also didn’t have certain things when I was younger,” he continued.

“It was a real struggle for my mum and she had to take care of all of us. She did the best she could and she made sure there was food on the table and that I had clothes to wear. Everything I could ask of my mum, she gave me. I was happy but, as you get older, you realise how difficult it must have been for her.”

The 23-year-old forward explained he is always making an effort to improve his performance with every opportunity he gets to showcase his potentials and revealed his best moment so far for Fulham was scoring in their victory over Leicester City.

“I’m always thinking of being better and where the team is. But the highlight for me would probably be Leicester away. We won 2-1 and that mattered more than anything,” he added.

Lookman will hope to continue his impressive form when Fulham take on Sheffield United in their next Premier League game on Saturday night



https://www.goal.com/en/news/fulhams-lookman-how-a-substitute-appearance-changed-my-life/15v9mdwrphhg319dh5m9nh1ddc

Offline whitejc

  • Administrator
  • Mornington Crescent
  • *
  • Posts: 67858
  • I'm tall for my height
Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff - 20/02/21...
« Reply #27 on: February 20, 2021, 07:04:32 PM »