A couple of articles up on the offal here and here of Jol speaking about joining Fulham. In them he mentions discussions have already gone underway on possible new players, our involvement in the Europa League, familiarity with players already here and of course a bit of Fulham flattery.
Following Tuesday morning’s official announcement that Martin Jol was Fulham’s new manager, the former Ajax, Hamburg and Spurs boss paid a visit to Motspur Park Training Ground to view his new base and meet the Club’s management team and staff.
Jol took the time to meet and speak to every member of staff at the Club on Tuesday afternoon before expressing his delight at having joined a Club he has long admired from afar.
“I’m very happy to be back and especially at a Club like Fulham. I remember coming here with Tottenham and I even think I played here when I was a player. Craven Cottage is a real football stadium, I loved going to Fulham.
“I could have gone to other counties but I was waiting for the opportunity to come back to England.”
Fulham’s new manager spoke highly of a number of the Club’s current professionals whom he knows well during his time at White Hart Lane before casting an eye to one or two new additions before the start of the 2010/11 campaign.
“It is too early to say that I know a lot about the squad I have inherited, but I enjoy watching Fulham and I enjoy watching players like Dembele who I have known for a while,” said Jol.
“There are a few players here I still know from my time at Tottenham, like Simon Davies, Danny Murphy and Stephen Kelly – they are all very good professionals.
“Yesterday we had a good conversation about players and where we can try to strengthen and get one or two quality players.”
Jol spoke of the demands that will be placed upon his squad over the next 12 months but the Dutchman is clearly relishing the challenge of competing in the Barclays Premier League, UEFA Europa League and domestic cup competitions next season.
“It would be ridiculous to say that I’m not happy with being in the Europa League,” Jol told fulhamfc.com on Tuesday afternoon. “I think Fulham were the first and only club who had a lucrative income from the Europa League.
“Any other team, say in Germany for example, would say that you don’t earn a lot of money from the Europa League because only the Champions League is profitable.
“Let’s not forget though that can hinder you in the season, the last time Fulham were in the Europa League they were 12th in the table, but it is my hope that we can build a squad that is strong enough to compete in all of these competitions.
“At Spurs we were in the last eight and it was a great experience in the group stage, with Hamburg we played in the semi-final, then a year later after I left they played in the semi-final against Fulham. You need a strong squad to compete in all of these competitions.
“We’ve got over 30 players, we’ll start with the younger pros as well – we’ve got a big group. Not everybody will be back but hopefully most of the people will be back and there won’t be a lot of difference to playing a game after six days of training or three days of training. It’s a bit early, 30th June, so we have to work around it with good planning.”