Jokanovic: Fulham need time to adapt

© Joe Giddens/PA Wire

Fulham boss Slavisa Jokanovic accepts his squad will need time to get up to speed in the Premier League – but are ready for the challenge ahead which continues against Tottenham at Wembley.

The Cottagers, promoted as Championship play-off winners, lost their opening game back in the top flight when beaten 2-0 at home by Crystal Palace.

Jokanovic, who heavily strengthened in the transfer window, takes his new-look team back to Wembley on Saturday, this time for a Premier League showdown against Spurs.

“We have many new players and will need time,” the Serbian said.

“We worked well this week, building our spirit and working on the way we want to play football.”

Jokanovic, who turned 50 on Thursday, knows Fulham will face a tough challenge when they look to nullify a Spurs team which produced consistent performances at their adopted home over the course of last season.

“This year in this stadium, only (Manchester) City and Juventus won against them. But this is a great opportunity for us to test ourselves again against one of the top English and European teams,” Jokanovic said at a press conference.

“It’s a great opportunity. This club has fought, and many of the players have fought, for the opportunity to face this kind of team.

“It’s an amazing and great challenge ahead of us and we are going to try and do our best, be competitive and fight for the points.”

Spurs opened their Premier League campaign with a hard-earned 2-1 win at Newcastle, where England skipper Harry Kane failed to find the net as his well-documented early-season goal drought continued.

“We know how important Harry Kane can be. He’s one of the top scorers in English football,” Jokanovic said.

“We must be organised to stop him and these kind of quality players that we are going to face.”

Jokanovic revealed defenders Tim Ream and Alfie Mawson are both still not match fit, while Denis Odoi continues his suspension following a red card in the Championship play-off final last season.

Left-back Joe Bryan, though, has recovered from an ankle problem and should be available.




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