Fulham get the Europa League started
There is still well over a month until the English Premier League season kicks off but Fulham have already played their first competitive match of the season. New boss Martin Jol led his team into Europe and they didn’t disappoint. Many fans that packed into Craven Cottage for the match are probably still looking forward to getting away on holiday but there team’s break was over and they were back in business. The Europa League may not be the biggest tournament in the world but it has its charm and no one at Fulham would moan too much about their presence in the tournament.
Fulham versus the might of the Faroe Isles
Nes Soknar Itrottarfelag is not a name that ranks highly amongst the greats of European football and they didn’t do anything which would have changed that perception in London on Thursday evening. Fulham of course reached the final of this tournament a few seasons back but that aside, they are not a team with any European pedigree. However, coming up against a team from the Faroe Islands perhaps doesn’t provide the sternest of opposition and so it proved.
A strong team for the season opener
Martin Jol sprang a surprise by fielding an extremely strong side, creating an even greater benefit for the fans. Damien Duff opened the scoring in the first half, a lead that was extended when Danny Murphy scored from the penalty spot and Andrew Johnson made the game secure with the third. In all honesty, the tie is pretty much done and even though the trip to the Faroes is likely to be an eye opener for many in the Fulham squad, it shouldn’t be too taxing a game.
There has been a fair bit of speculation about the future of Johnson and there is every chance that he could be moving on before the season starts. Former Fulham boss Roy Hodgson, currently in charge of West Bromwich Albion, has been credited with an interest in the striker, who could well be heading to the Hawthorns. Even though there have been some big signings by top English clubs this summer, there is still the feeling that the majority of deals are still to come. Getting off to a good start was vital for Fulham but the players involved may not be the ones who are still in the line-up when the league season kicks.