News and Views

Steve Clarke Looks Set To Join Fulham

18 November 2015
By Hob Nob Anyone?

Steve Clarke looks set to become manager of Fulham in what will be a bizarre sideways move for the manager. Clarke is now a firm favourite at 1/4 to be installed as the new manager at Craven Cottage this evening.

Fulham are below Reading in the Championship in 12th place, and Clarke would move shortly after making big changes at Reading after being allowed to implement his own plans for the new season. He raised plenty of eyebrows in the close season after dismissing a number of back-room staff to install his own team. His changes included a number of coaching staff and even included the removal of Reading's long standing kitman. With the impressive backing of Reading's Thai owners, Clarke was able to release a number of key players and replace them with "big signings" to give Reading a strong squad for the new season.

His big changes meant that things had to work out for him quickly, and the season got off to a decent start. Reading moved into second place in the Championship leading to talk of automatic promotion - before a run of five matches within a league win has seen Reading sink to 8th. Despite the recent loss of form, confidence had remained high at Reading. Clarke has assembled an exciting new team and has only just got to work with it. It is very early days for the new look playing squad - and early days for Clarke and his backroom staff.

Moving to Fulham at such a stage of the season, with Reading placed where they are, seems a very odd decision. If Clarke does leave for Fulham it will show a serious lack of loyalty after both Reading's owners and fans put their faith in him.

Fulham have been without a manager for ten days after sacking Kit Symons after a 2-5 home defeat against Birmingham City before the International break. Fulham's last win was their 4-2 victory over Reading in October, which has been followed by three big defeats. Obviously their previous manager getting one over Steve Clarke has done nothing to put them off as they look to secure his signature.

Clarke has been at Reading for just eleven months. He joined the Royals in December 2014, a full year after leaving his previous managers job at West Bromwich Albion. He failed to impress last season until he guided Reading to a historic FA Cup Semi-Final against Arsenal. That cup run aside, his record with Reading will go down as very average if he has managed his last Reading game.

Steve Clarke's Reading Record:

  • Wins: 18
  • Draws: 14
  • Defeats: 18

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