ESPN FC Extra: Fulham's new man
Fulham have not dismissed Rene Meulensteen despite the appointment of Felix Magath as first-team manager, according to reports.
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Fulham confirmed that former Bayern Munich boss Magath had taken the reins on Friday but made no mention of Meulensteen, who had taken charge of the club following the departure of Martin Jol at the end of last year.
Meulensteen had appeared to believe he had been dismissed, telling BBC Sport that the owners had “hit the panic button on emotion and fear,” but reports claim he remains employed and that the club want him to form part of Magath’s staff.
The Daily Telegraph said Fulham were “insisting that Rene Meulensteen had not been sacked” on Saturday and that the Dutchman would, in theory, be “expected to report for duty” when Magath meets the club’s backroom staff. The Daily Mirror added that “Fulham still value him as a coach... but believe he lacks the authority and the nous to continue as the top man.”
However, neither newspaper believes there is any realistic prospect of Meulensteen remaining at Craven Cottage.
Meanwhile, Fulham Supporters' Trust member Dan Crawford said fans were “surprised” by the decision to replace Meulensteen despite taking just one point from their last six games.
“I was very surprised,” Crawford said. “We had all read that he might have two games to save his job but you just assumed that the performances and fight they showed would have been enough.
“We haven't won a league game since January 1, we are out of FA Cup, bottom of the league and running out of time. The defending has been abysmal for most of the season -- you hope that someone who is a disciplinarian will come in and get things right, he won't take any prisoners and has virtually no margin for error.
“We are in the last-chance saloon and everyone recognises that. It slaps a little bit of desperation but that is par for the course given the situation we are in.”
Information from the Press Association was used in this report.