OGS: IT'S BEEN AN ENCOURAGING START
Manager targets positive end to August
spoke to the media ahead of Saturday’s 3pm kick-off at Craven Cottage, acknowledging the threat Felix Magath’s side poses.Ole Gunnar SolskjærCity boss
Fulham have not enjoyed the easiest of starts with the midweek defeat of Brentford in the Capital One Cup their solitary win so far this campaign.
But speaking at the Vale Hotel on Friday morning, Ole reflected on the transitory nature of football form and how a serious test will need to be confronted head on this weekend.
“Fulham have not had a great start, but that’s football sometimes,” Ole said. “You get the margins against you and they have had the margins against them. They did well against Brentford this week so that will probably lift them. We did well against Port Vale as well though.”
Federico Machedabagged a brace midweek, his performance giving Ole food for thought given the wealth of talented striking options at his disposal. He refelected: “Kiko’s ready to start – he’s desperate. He was supposed to be on the bench against Wigan as well but I left him out of that one.
“He was really disappointed with that so he’s been waiting. He is eager to get onto the pitch and I’ve just got a decision to make after training today.”
Kagisho Dikgacoiis yet to start a Championship match so far this term, though Ole believes the all-action midfielder will play a big part this year, adding: “KG got an injury that kept him out for a while but he did well against Port Vale on Tuesday. He played 90 minutes for the first time under me, it was wholly positive.
“He will be an important player for us for the rest of this season – I brought him in for his experience, physical presence and I can see him playing a lot in the games coming up.”
are making good strides toward full fitness.Craig Noone and Aron Gunnarsson from a minor knock, whilst Mats Møller DæhliThe Bluebirds will also be boosted by the return of
“Aron is likely to train today but we’re not sure if he will be ready,” Ole admitted. “Nooney was also training today and looks strong; he won’t be in contention for tomorrow, but he’ll be fine when everybody returns from the international break. Having him back will be like signing a seven or eight million pound player.
“Mats is back too but Ben Turner’s out; he’s had to have surgery on his ankle and will be recovering for a little longer.
“I think we’re improving as a squad. I can see the signs that we’re getting better as a team. If we can get something tomorrow then I’ll definitely reflect on this as having been a good start.”
And finally, in relation to the impending closure of the summer transfer window on Monday, the Manager stated: "If I have the squad I've got now [come Tuesday] then we're in good shape.
"I was asked how to keep everyone happy; it's not about keeping them happy, it's about keeping them on their toes and ready to perform.
"Of course it helps if they're happy but as long as they're in a good vein of form and I don't lose anyone, then I wouldn't be worried bout that."
Watch Ole and Sean Morrison's pre-match press conferences via YouTube below: