Fulham have made a disastrous start to life in the Championship, losing five of their first six games. Saturday’s 3-0 defeat to Reading made the crisis even worse as they currently sit below Blackpool - a side that started the season with just 13 first-team players - in the table.
Following that aforementioned loss, manager Felix Magath told the BBC: “I am very sad about our situation so I can understand the fans.” He continued by saying that everybody was disappointed and was raring to turn it around.
But the only way I can see the London club's fortunes changing is if they change their manager.
New faces at Craven Cottage
Having lost many senior players over the summer and brought in 14 of Magath's own signings, you can understand that Fulham may take time to gel, but it’s the level of performance that has been worrying as they find themselves rock bottom.
Home defeats to newly-promoted Wolves and London rivals Millwall were hard enough for the fans to stomach, but a 5-1 hammering at the hands of Derby County and Saturday's defeat at the Madejski Stadium could be the final straw as fans begin to turn on the manager.
Having brought in so many players, Magath has also handed chances to many of the club's academy graduates as well as splashing £11 million on new signing Ross McCormack. The latter has failed to score in five league games since making the switch from Elland Road – his only goal coming in the 1-0 Capital One Cup win over Brentford.
With an away trip to early pace setters Nottingham Forest next, followed by a home game against Blackburn - it may not sound too difficult but they have not been too convincing at home - it could be one point in seven games for the club who were rubbing shoulders with the big boys just a matter of months ago.
The blame game
Since their relegation from the Premier League, Magath has blamed previous chairman Mohamed Al-Fayed for Fulham's relegation from the top-flight, claiming he should have backed previous managers with more cash.
However, Al-Fayed has since hit back, blaming the 61-year-old. Former club captain Brede Hangeland and John Arne Riise have also spoken about the way Magath has run the club since their departures, with ex-Liverpool defender Riise saying he has ‘flushed the club down the toilet.’
Whoever’s fault it is, it’s time for the former Bayern Munich manager to stand up and take responsibility. Since he replaced Rene Meulensteen in February, he has only won four of his 20 games in charge.
Hangeland claimed he “mentally and physically battered his players” as they were relegated and nothing seems to have changed as his new-look side continue to struggle with life in the Championship.
At the start of the season Magath - who has no previous experience in English football - claimed he was the right man for the job and that he could guide this Fulham side to an automatic return, but the three-times Bundesliga winner seems unable to get the best out of his players at the minute.
Lightning strikes twice
In 1968, Fulham were relegated from the top division and then suffered another demotion the season after.
Surely action must be taken to stop the rut that has descended over Craven Cottage.
Fulham need a manager that can get the best out of this young side, someone who the players respect and will perform for, at the minute Magath is not the man for the job and I don’t see that changing anytime soon.
Who is there to replace him?
Tim Sherwood is still looking for a job after leaving Tottenham Hotspur at the end of last season. Former Leeds United manager Brian McDermott is also available. Other names such as Steve Clarke – who did a great job at West Brom – may be interested, but would he drop down to the Championship? Owen Coyle and Billy Davies are also without jobs.
Another alternative for the London club could be to look at managers in League 1 or 2 that are doing well, such as MK Dons' Karl Robinson, Bristol City manager Steve Cotterill or Burton Albion boss Gary Rowett.
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