Slavisa Jokanovic admitted that he is still trying to protect teenager Ryan Sessegnon from the limelight but lavished praise on the sixteen year old’s undoubted potential after he rescued a point for Fulham tonight with a stoppage time equaliser.
Relegation favourites Burton Albion looked set to record their first away win of the season at Craven Cottage after Jackson Irvine’s stunning strike but Sessegnon popped up in injury-time to fire home from three yards out when Jon McLoughlin failed to hold Sone Aluko’s shot and prevent Fulham from falling to two consecutive home defeats.
Jokanovic told his post-match press conference that he is still managing Sessegnon’s introduction to senior football, but conceded the England youth international is making it very difficult to leave him out.
I prefer not to speak so much about him. We try to protect him – he is only 16 and a few months. Generally, we believe he has a very bright future in front of him.
We believe actually right now he’s prepared for this level and for Fulham. Always when I give him the chance, he is performing at a good level.
The Fulham head coach insisted it is too early to accurately assess where his side could finish this season with as many as nine new signings starting tonight’s game.
I don’t compare with the past and last season. Today I started with Scott Parker and Tom Cairney, but [otherwise] we are a completely new team.
Some players are only working a few weeks with us and to build something, sometimes you need years. We still need to find solutions to be more clinical but at the same time I believe the players who start this year with us are a little bit better.