Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 19 August 2019

Scott Parker: Fulham must learn from Premier League relegation

London side's fate sealed on Tuesday night as they are soundly beaten 4-1 by Watford

Fulham's Aleksandar Mitrovic, left, consoles teammate Andre-Franck Zambo after the side's relegation was confirmed on Tuesday. PA via AP
Fulham's Aleksandar Mitrovic, left, consoles teammate Andre-Franck Zambo after the side's relegation was confirmed on Tuesday. PA via AP

Scott Parker intends to tell the Fulham hierarchy the reasons for their relegation after their fate was sealed with Tuesday's 4-1 thrashing at Watford.

They were condemned to an instant return to the Championship, stranded 19th in the Premier League table with only 17 points from 33 games, 16 short of safety with just 15 to play for.

The caretaker manager has overseen five defeats from his five fixtures since succeeding the sacked Claudio Ranieri on a temporary basis, after the Italian had also failed to improve results following Slavisa Jokanovic's earlier dismissal.

Fulham's relegation also comes after their net spend of £106 million (Dh511m) over the past two transfer windows represented the third highest in the Premier League.

Parker, 38, said: "I was put in this position and I realise where the mistakes are, what needs to change. Ultimately I'll put my points across.

"I've not honestly thought about myself (remaining as manager). I'm obviously gutted. I realised how big the task was and we all understood how big the task was to try to stay in this division. The most disappointing thing was how we lost.

"In a snapshot, if you haven't watched us play this year and you just watched those 10 minutes where (goals) two, three, four go in, that sums it up.

"We just can't weather a storm. That's exactly it. In the Championship, you get away with it. In this division, you ain't getting away with it.

"I'm sure there's a mental issue. When you're bottom of the league, everything becomes a bit harder. There's some naivety.

"The dressing room is obviously disappointed. Gutted.

"There have been some initial discussions, but not real, 'Okay, where have the mistakes been made?'

"There needs to be a sit-down, work out where the mistakes were made this year, work on that as quick as we can and go from there."

Abdoulaye Doucoure gave Watford the lead and, while Ryan Babel temporarily brought the visitors level, Will Hughes' fine volley and then further finishes from Troy Deeney and Kiko Femenia secured a convincing victory.

Watford's win gave them further cause for encouragement ahead of Sunday's FA Cup semi-final against Wolves at Wembley, as well as a club record Premier League points tally of 46.

Manager Javi Gracia said: "To win was the best way to prepare for the next game.

"Amazing. To get 46 points, the best amount of points ever in the Premier League, is very good.

"For the next game, we will see what happens. I have to take difficult decisions. After (substitute Andre Gray's) performance, I have to think about that.

"In the first half? Yes (I was angry). I did not like what I saw. We needed to change something.

"We did not keep the shape in the first half, we lost challenges. We had to adjust positions, movements, and two substitutions.

"In the second half, we felt better. More possession, more chances, scoring more goals. It was the key to winning the game."

Updated: April 3, 2019 08:40 AM

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