Claudio Ranieri

Rock bottom of the league with just 12 games gone and now the owners of Fulham have decided to change their manager. Slaviša Jokanović is the first victim of the managerial merry go round and he has been replaced instantly by non-other than Claudio Ranieri; who actually made Jokanović his first signing during his time at Chelsea. However, can his positive attitude change the negative attitude around Craven Cottage?

It has been a tough reintroduction to the Premier League for Fulham when things started brightly for them. Although they fell to defeats to Crystal Palace, Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City they were showing positive signs that they showed in the Championship. However, since the loss to Everton at the end of September they have fallen to six successive defeats.

These defeats have not just been unlucky defeats, they have been clear-cut especially the 5-1 loss at home to Arsenal. The big hammer blows were the 4-2 loss to Cardiff and the 1-0 loss to Huddersfield Town. Two sides that if Fulham is to stay in the division they have to be beating.

So the curtain has been closed on Jokanović and the London club have welcomed former Chelsea and Leicester City boss Ranieri in his place; in what has been a very quick appointment. Sometimes it can be a knee-jerk reaction to sack a manager but this seems like the right decision. Jokanoivć has done the club proud by bringing attacking football and a return to the Premier League but it looks like he has found his level with his brand of football.

Ranieri is one who likes to play attacking football as well, with his fast and furious title winning Leicester side. With the likes of Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez causing havoc for the opposition for them the question will remain can he do the same with the current breed at Craven Cottage?

The Italian has been out of work since he was sacked in May 2018 by Nantes after what can only be described as an average display with the French side. But his return to the Premier League has brought excitement for Fulham fans and even neutrals because of his eccentric style and fast football.

It will be hard for him to recreate the heroics, near on impossible, he experienced at Leicester but having managed 17 different sides in a 30-year career he brings bags of experience and a know-how of the Premier League that many managers lack.

It is expected that Ranieri will bring his own backroom staff in as these are men he has worked with before and trusts. However, Scott Parker is expected to stay on at the club. Owner, Shahid Khan will be hoping he has made the right decision and with plenty of time left in the season to turn it around with a fresh start, I am sure that Ranieri will guide Fulham out of trouble this season. So hopefully for Fulham fans, he will be shouting “We are in the Premier League, Dilly ding, dilly dong!”

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