Fulham ground out a slightly undeserved 3 points against Norwich which, whilst certainly not harmimg Kit Symons’ prospects of permanent management, was probably not convincing enough to secure it now. We now have two tough ganes in 6 days at Rotherham away (the archetypal wet and cold Tuesday ooop north) and a derby against Charlton on Friday. The majority view is that Kit will repair the fences of the destructive Magath and is a Fulham centric manager as he understands our club. The minority view – which is mine – is that other candidates have a better CV of promotion, notably Chris Hughton, but we all want Kit to succeed and, whoever is appointed, he should play an important role in the set-up in much the same way as Ray Lewington did over the years.
The most encourgang aspect of yesterday’s performance was the defensive pairing of Burn and Bodurov. This is the axis of any team, as Hughes and Hangeland demonstrated, and after much tinkering we now have a redoubtable combo. Bodurov is your typical rugged east European defender with a fine positional sense. He is not the tallest but the six foot six inches Dan Burn can attack the high ball. Keeper Bettanelli, who has now saved or rather not conceded, 2 penalities after the Norwich effort struck the woodwork looks a tad indecisive and the full backs better going forward than defending so we need this security at central defence. The downside is that McCormack is yet to be integrated in the side. Our big money forward signings over the years – Marlet, Johnson, Mitrogl0u – all failed to score more than one goal in 3 and I am afraid Mcormack does not inspire any more confidence as a regular goalscorer. By the end he was playing in left side midfield which was rather odd as we could have done with a big man up front to relieive the pressure that Norwich were imposing. A lesser concern that Bryan Ruiz is stil way short of his World Cup form.
Fulham like Barcelona is more than a club. It’s a social hub. In the morning I had a coffee with Jason Bowyer, a renowned artist and President of the New English Art club whose paintings of Fulham are collector’s items. He is a Symons man and pointed to Chris Coleman’s lack of experience. In his first 5 games Chris’s Fulham won 10 points out of 15. Kit has nine and a Capital Cup victory over Doncaster. At half time I was delighted to see Bernard Gallacher who looked as fit as a fiddle after his near brush with mortality only saved by a defibulator being at the dinner where he collapsed. Instead of dreading my trips to Fulham when the club lost all direction, it’s now a much happier place and this is as significant achievement for Kit as the 9 points.