Jokanovic's Fulham conference: Four absentees, quote of the season
Fulham are back in the Premier League and Slavisla Jokanovic has spent heavily this summer to prepare the side for their return to the top-flight.
The Cottagers have secured a host of impressive summer signings, which include World Cup winning winger Andre Schurrle, Ivory Coast midfielder Jean-Michel Seri and highly-coveted Swansea City defender Alfie Mawson.
Not everyone is set to make their debut for the club tomorrow though, as we identify three key takeaways from Jokanovic’s press conference ahead of the game against Crystal Palace.
No easy ride for new additions
Having spent over £100m to land 12 new players, Jokanovic is set for regular selection headaches throughout the season if everyone is performing at their best – and he fired a warning that he is not going to let anyone slide.
Already making what could be the best quote of the season, Jokanovic encouraged his squad to remain on their toes and to fight for places in the squad ahead of what is set to be a gruelling campaign back in the Premier League.
“I’m not Santa Claus – there are no presents. The players need to fight for their places. We’ve made a great investment in the transfer market and I’m hoping we’ll see an immediate benefit.”
Four absentees named
While there is new faces available in the squad, there is also a number of familiar names who are unavailable tomorrow as Jokanovic revealed that Denis Odoi, Tim Ream and Ayite Floyd are all injured and won’t feature.
New signing Alfie Mawson also won’t be making his debut following his switch from Swansea as he has not started working with the squad yet, meaning he must wait until at least next weekend’s trip to Tottenham to make his Fulham debut.
“I can’t use Denis Odoi tomorrow, who’s suspended. Alfie Mawson hasn’t started working with us yet. Tim Ream and Ayite Floyd are injured.”
Here to stay
If the £100m spending spree did not make it clear enough, Fulham are in the Premier League with the intention to stay and their wealth of summer signings suggest they could put the cat amongst the pigeons to cause a number of problems for established sides.
Jokanovic, understandably, is excited about the club’s return to the top-flight but is taking it one game at a time as he looks to secure all three points in a London derby against Crystal Palace, who have plenty of players who could cause problems.
“It’s important to show ambition and desire to stay up – that’s our first target. We’re building a team to be competitive at this level. I’m excited. Our target remain the same – win all three points.”