Manchester United connection helping Fulham bid to stay up

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Rene Meulensteen has revealed how he has been speaking to former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson to seek advice as Fulham bid to avoid relegation from the Premier League.

The Dutchman succeeded Martin Jol at Craven Cottage at the beginning of December but has endured a difficult start to life as a manager, with Fulham having lost eight of their 11 games under his command.

Defeat to Southampton at the weekend, with Cardiff securing victory, resulted in Fulham dropping to the foot of the table, while the south west London club are four points away from safety.

It is a tough time indeed for Meulensteen, who left Manchester United during the summer following the appointment of David Moyes as Ferguson's replacement, and he is hoping his contacts may aid Fulham's recovery.

Meulensteen says he has been in contact with his ex-boss at Old Trafford direction as he attempts to turn things around, and is using Ferguson's strength of character as inspiration during this punishing period.

"I’ve spoken to Alex on and off and he is always a phone call away," he told reporters.

"The biggest lesson I learned from working with him was that whenever we stared into adversity or disappointment, he was always remarkably strong in those moments.

"You could never spot any doubts in his words or his behaviour and that always transferred to the players. Now I want to do exactly the same at Fulham.

"It is about making sure you give clear messages to the team, that there is no doubt about what you are going to do and why.

"Then you have to make sure you don’t start making decisions on emotions just because you are disappointed.

"Just because you are in a certain position at the bottom of the table, you can’t let it affect the work you do. You have to keep your belief that you are doing the right things."

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