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Why Martin Jol Needs to Stay At Fulham And Follow Everton Blueprint

After Fulham survived a tough season in the Barclay’s Premier League, slipping to 12th in the league, the speculation continued about the future of Fulham manager Martin Jol. Sacking a manager happens often, but when is the right time for a change? How long should Fulham stick with Jol?

Fulham have been a mid-table club for a long time, so how do they progress forward and be a club that is fighting for a Europa League spot each and every year? Well, I think Fulham should look at the blue side of Liverpool for that answer.

Everton Manager David Moyes has been with the club since the 2001-2002 season, until his decision recently to move to Manchester United. Moyes has brought stability and consistency to Everton for twelve seasons. There is something to be said for sticking with a manager, and giving him a chance to see his vision through.

Everton during the Moyes era has been for the most part fighting for a top ten spot the majority of the time. The rewards of sticking with a manager for Everton showed up back in the beginning for Moyes at the club.

When Moyes first took over in March of the 2001-2002 season, he helped them avoid relegation, and ended the season 15th in the league. The very next season saw Everton go up to 7th in the league.

Now, in the Barclay’s Premier League, there are ups and downs, and Everton in the 2003-2004 season barely stayed in the league ending 17th in the EPL. The management could have at that point moved on from their manager.

Instead, Everton stuck with their manager and were rewarded as the club ended the 2004-2005 season in 4th, which got them into the Champions League. That was the season Everton sold Wayne Rooney to Manchester United, which makes this achievement even more remarkable.

By sticking with their manager, Everton have seriously prospered over his tenure, and as Moyes leaves Goodison Park, he leaves a team that just finished 6th in the league.  The legacy that he built could continue as Everton still have a good amount of talent to push forward.

Now, the current Fulham manager has only been with the club for two seasons.  His first saw Fulham end the season 9th, and this season as stated earlier had the club end 12th in the Barclay’s Premier League.

Fulham were dealt a serious blow last summer as they were forced to sell both Mousa Dembele and Clint Dempsey at the end of the transfer window. Jol did not have enough time to find suitable replacements, and I could argue he still needs to replace those players.

So, I feel it makes perfect sense for Fulham to have Jol back for this season to see if Fulham can push forward under his guidance. Hopefully he will be given the resources he needs to build the club he wants, and to ultimately see his vision for Fulham through.

I understand the supporters that want change who feel the time is now, but I think the frequent change at the managerial position over the years could be one of the reasons Fulham have not gotten out of mid-table. Sometimes patience is needed, and I truly believe Jol needs one more full season with the club before you can ultimately judge the job he has done with the club.

Fulham picked up his option on his contract so I have a feeling he will be the Fulham manager this upcoming season, and I think that would be the right decision. All you need to do is look to Everton to see what some patience did for that club. Fulham could definitely learn something from the club that plays at Goodison Park.

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  1. Julian Armstrong

    May 25, 2013 at 3:29 am

    Sensible article. Given that we already seem to be starting the rebuilding process would suggest to me that Jol is definitely staying. It has been a tough season but a lot of our problems in matches came from silly mistakes.

    Clearly it was a big problem losing Dembele and Dempsey, although I think we always knew the latter was going to leave. On the other hand, the young players coming through were still a bit inexperienced, but the like of Briggs and Kacanicklic will really benefit from having played more this season.

    Central midfield is a priority. Boateng sounds like that kind of dynamic player we need and provided Sidwell stops sliding late into tackles and getting sent off and perhaps pick up Enoh who was on loan, we have the exciting possibility of maybe seeing a little of Chris David who sounds like a real prospect.

    I would be very surprised (and disappointed) if Jol went.

  2. Andrew Sansom

    May 24, 2013 at 10:30 pm

    I totally agree with you that Jol should stay. Under the circumstances (Dempsey, Dembele and Murphy leaving) a 12th place finish is something I would have taken at the beginning of the season. Survival was the only thing on my mind. You could argue that 7 points above relegation is too close for comfort but by the same token we were only 7 points away from 8th place.

    It’s been clear that MAF is not willing to put any more big money into the club, for players at least, so I believe we are in for another summer of free transfers and loan players. That in itself is not always a bad thing. Jol has a good eye for a player and Fulham has a very good scouting mechanism. I am not sure if we are going to be competing for Europe next season, and the Europa is something of a poisoned chalice anyway, but a solid mid table finish is well within reach. We need to shore up defence as our normally solid back four have been badly exposed this season, a couple of creative midfielders and possibly another striker to take some of the responsibility from Berbatov.

  3. Mateusz Zu

    May 24, 2013 at 6:05 pm

    I agree, Jol is the one to take us forward, with some financial backing without going wild, we can become better than just a stable midtable club. Jol has a good eye for unheard talent. bring them in on the cheap: riether, dejagah, amorebieta etc. Jol has a certain way of playing, but he needs the players to do so. Wrong players playing in his system doesnt work. hence the need for investment. Hope we keep him.

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