Cottagers Back In Europe?
Fulham could be presented with the opportunity to repeat last season’s Europa League heroics, thanks to their fair play this season.
The Cottagers lie in 11th in the EPL table going into this Saturday’s trip to struggling Wolverhampton Wanderers.
But they are in line for the Europa League place awarded to representatives of the top three countries in Uefa’s ‘Respect Fair Play league.
England are currently among the top three and Fulham, second in the EPL’s fair play rankings, would qualify for Europe’s secondary club competition as leaders Chelsea are virtually certain to reach the Champions League.
Fulham were Europa League finalists last season, losing to Athletico Madrid, after a memorable run which took them past teams such as Juventus and the then holders Shakhtar Donetsk.
European qualification could help Fulham boss Mark Hughes persuade disaffected players John Pantsil and Zoltan Gera to remain in West London next season.
Neither player has featured regularly this season and Ghanaian defender Pantsil’s contract ends in the summer. Hungarian striker Gera claimed recently that he had been denied a loan move away from the Cottage in January in search of regular first-team football.
Fulham lost to two first-half goals in their EPL trip to leaders Manchester United last Saturday.
But this followed a convincing 3-0 home win over strugglers Blackpool the previous Sunday, including two goals from Bobby Zamora in his first start after an 11-month spell out with a broken leg.
Zamora said after the game that he was “over the moon.”
Tags: Fulham, Europa League, Cottagers, Mark Hughes, Bobby Zamora