What a difference a week makes in football. A battling away-point at the Hawthorns, a tricky Cup victory up at Boston, a much-needed win over Southampton, and suddenly all the depression has been swept away by a good burst of that elusive feel-good factor.
The same could be said for Fulham’s Canada international Tomasz Radzinski. By his own admission it’s been a tricky start to the season for him, but with three goals in the last two games, the Polish-born striker now just can’t wait for the next match to come.
“It’s been a really good week,” Radzinski admitted, speaking at Motspur Park this week. “And I was hoping the next game would come sooner rather than later – I would definitely have liked a game this Wednesday just to keep the run going!
“I think my life at Fulham can really begin now. For the last two games I’ve played in the position that I’ve been more used to – up front as one of the two strikers and it’s paid off with the goals.
“Although that’s my ideal position, I played plenty of games for Everton as the wide man with three strikers – I think I did against Fulham – and I started my career here that way too. Cookie’s the boss and he knows what he’s doing.
“He has every game prepared well in advance; he knows the strengths of the teams we’re up against and he’ll decide how many strikers we need out there. Whatever position I’m in I’m going to go out there and do my best – but it’s all up to the manager.”
Radzinski’s settling-in process has been helped by the fact that he’s no longer living out of a suitcase.
“I moved into my own place on Monday,” he said. “Before that it was suitcases and hotels – so hopefully I can really get things on track now. Last week, with scoring those goals and moving in, everything seems to have fallen into place – everything feels good at the moment.”
Steve Kean was quoted as saying this week that he thought the fans would now start to see the real Tomasz Radzinski. The Polish born striker laughed when asked about the comment.
“I’m not sure who the real Tomasz Radzinski is!” he said. “But I hope that the confidence can continue to build up over the next few weeks, and I hope I can help the team to get some good results and we can really build it up in the league.
“Who is the real me? I really don’t know; I just hope I can continue with the form I’ve had over the last two games and help my team mates do well.”
It was three crucial points against Southampton, and a game that was always going to be more about the result than the performance.
“When I arrived here we couldn’t have asked for a better start,” Radzinski said. “Four points from the two games, we were up there and flying. And then we had three bad results – not always bad performances, just bad results – but I think it was just a matter of time until we sorted it out.
“We were very unlucky not to get all three points against West Brom, and that meant that we really needed the win against Southampton. It might not have been the prettiest of games for the fans, but at that stage the pretty football could stay in the dressing room as long as we got the result we needed.”
One of the things that has made Radzinski feel more at home, has been the enthusiastic bunch of Canadian fans who have turned up at the Cottage to cheer his every move. They might not be on the scale of Inamoto’s legion of followers, but they’re doing their bit.
“This is something new for me,” he revealed. “Every time I warm up I see a Canadian Flag on the halfway line and that’s just great. The last time I saw one was back in Belgium with Anderlecht, so I think it’s really nice that they’re coming down and watching. The North American fans might not be as crazy as the Japanese but it’s great to see them here.”
Radzinski will have to curb his impatience until Monday before he can get his next taste of action. He admitted to not knowing a great deal about Palace – other than that he knows they’re in for a very tough game.
“All I know is that they put in an incredible run to get to the Premiership – from relegation candidates in December all the way through to win the play-offs in May,” he said. “On that basis I think you can expect a team with a lot of spirit and with a very good attitude.
“They haven’t started the season all that well, so they’re going to be going out there with something to prove against us, and we’re going to have to be prepared for that and go out there and show them what we’re made of.
“There aren’t any easy games any more, and if we’re not up for it we’re going to be in for a big surprise. But we will be prepared for it and we’ll give them a good run for their money.
“I’m a positive guy, and when I came here and saw the quality I thought of European football. It’s been a while since I played in a European competition, and I miss it. But with this team I think we can achieve it. You have to aim high and have confidence in yourself, but we definitely have a team who can make it.”