Convincing Slavisa Jokanovic to leave Maccabi Tel Aviv for Fulham is a ‘coup’ for the club, according to the Israeli journalist who broke the story that the Serbian was heading to Craven Cottage.
Speaking on Talksport, Raphael Geller said that Jokanovic had rebuffed advances to take over at other Championship sides like Blackburn, Queen’s Park Rangers and Reading but chose to move to Fulham after it became clear that the club hierarchy were desperate to bring him in and that there was a lot ‘passion’ associated with his new club. Although Maccabi were reluctant to let Jokanovic leave, they received around £386,000 in compensation – which is a significant fee for a manager, who only had a further six months on his contract.
Geller, who praised Jokanovic for guiding Maccabi past tough opponents on their way to the Champions’ League group stages, believes that Fulham fans should be ‘really excited’ by the appointment. Jokanovic was flying into London last night, although he will not take charge of his new side against Rotherham tonight, preferring to watch from the stands. His coaching staff will also be leaving Maccabi to join him at Craven Cottage, although they will arrive later, having committed to helping the Israeli side make the transition towards a new coach.
Fulham fans should be really excited. He will need time to implement his style and bring his players in. It will not happen over night. He’s a really interesting character. He’s played several different formations, he doesn’t have a goto formation, he sees what’s available. He’s known for being very smart tactically. He’s very, very smart, he’s like this old school manager that looks specifically at every aspect.
I think it’s a coup, he’s a guy that should be in the Premier League. In a few years we’ll look back and talk about Jokanovic. He’s very honest with the media and his players. He says what he feels. He’s a very special manager.