Two former Chelsea players in the frame for Fulham job


Martin Jol could be on his way out soon, and speculation has already begun as to who may replace him.

Martin Jol looked resigned to defeat against Liverpool on Saturday as soon as the first goal went in. It’s almost as if he is expecting defeats now, and there isn’t much for Fulham fans to cling onto if the manager seems all out of fight and enthusiasm.

Jol gave very simple, straight-forward, monotone answers to questions posed to him in the post-match interviews. When asked “Do you still have the fight to carry on?” and “Do you still think you’re the man to take Fulham forward?” he simply replied with “Yes”. It remains unclear whether Fulham owner Shahid Khan thinks the same as the Dutchman.

Two managers that have today been linked with replacing Jol in The Express are Roberto Di Matteo and Dan Petrescu. Di Matteo has of course had great success managing in this country already. His first managerial job was with MK Dons and in his only season in charge he led them to third place in League One, but lost in the play-off semi finals to Scunthorpe United. It was enough to convince West Brom to give him the job. He led them to promotion from The Championship at the first time of asking. After a promising start in the Premier League he was sacked in February after a run of one win in ten games. He would end up managing his beloved Chelsea though, and famously led them to their first ever Champions League victory in 2012. Di Matteo was inspirational in resurrecting a season that had got off to a slow start under Andre Villas Boas. Despite this after just eight months in the job he was sacked, even though he had won two trophies.

Di Matteo has been linked with many jobs since departing Chelsea, but Dan Petrescu is an interesting name to pop up. The Romanian played for Chelsea between 1995 and 2000, and also had spells with Sheffield Wednesday, Bradford City and Southampton.

Petrescu has since managed in his homeland as well as in Poland with Wisla Krakow, and in Russia with Kuban Krasnodar and his current club Dynamo Moscow. He has a great reputation at these clubs and is deemed one of the best young coaches in Europe. At Wisla Krakow he achieved a second place finish in his first season. With Unirea Urziceni in Romania he led them to the national title just three years after they were promoted to the top flight.
He also led Kuban to promotion in his first year at the club before leaving to join Dynamo Moscow in 2012. He would be keen on a return to the Premier League, and the ambitious manager could be facing a straight battle with a former teammate if Martin Jol is sacked.

Fulham fans aren’t said to be keen on the former Spurs and Ajax manager staying, and Di Matteo and Petrescu represent options that would certainly bring some excitement and a lift to Craven Cottage.


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