Fulham Felix Magath had a morning media presser in which he went over a few various topics of note. Thanks in large part to Thomas McIlroy who posted highlights on his twitter feed which will make this process a little more conducive. If you want to hear the whole thing you can go out 'Radio Jackie' and download the full press conference (19 minutes and 47 seconds) if you wish to listen to it full and uncut--that's where I downloaded it.
(quick edit: Fulham apparently published the first 8 minutes of the press conference in a youtube that Andrew posted just before I got this off)
Basically the highlights and reviews are as followed and are the as best as I can manage from the audio. I don't claim 100% accuracy, because I make mistakes.
- The first question posed was about the opening of the season and dealing with the Championship. Magath opened up about his decision to come to Fulham and the chance to rebuild the club. He talked about building through youth and the amount of young players and the chance they have to rebuild the club in a greater way. There was also some McCormack mentions.
Magath spoke to the fact that no one really likes change or relegation but showed a positive attitude in having the opportunity to institute the change that was needed with Fulham. He also spoke of his desires to take them to them to the top of the Premier League.
- The next question was about last years problems with players being tired in the second half and some of Fulham former players being critical of Felix decisions. Felix talked about some of the claims of Brede Hangeland and really kind of turned it around on him. Saying that Hangeland and the players who were here were to blame for the state of the club. Going so far as to say he spoke to Hangeland after relegation and asked him to return to his club to which Hangeland was not so certain he wanted to do that and "had to think about it". This apparently annoyed Magath.
- Follow up question following was whether the chairmen (Shahid Khan) had set any specific targets for this season such as promotion (duh). Felix response was pretty classic in that he stated "there is only promotion".
Magath went a bit further with this thought noting his dissatisfaction with putting the team together so late in the transfer window. He, again, made mention of Norwich and the fact they have near the same team. Meaning they had less time to really get to know one another. He did say he thought we had a "fantastic team" but a very young team that just needs time to develop.
- Next question was with how tough the Championship is whether Fulham had enough talent to "drag itself" back to the Premier League. Felix response "it's always a mixture of fighting and tactical play".
- The reporter (unidentified at this point) then asks to ask a few followed up questions about specific players. First Mitroglou. To which Felix sighs heavily and talked about his fitness problems and an interesting thing is that he says it wasn't his fault that he wasn't a good fit for the club. He also answered the followed up that Mitroglou wants to play Champions League and that Fulham are two years from "being there". A little humor by our Manager.
- Next came the subject of Maarten Stekelenburg whether he's someone Magath will keep at the club. Simply stated Magath said "No." and then expanded on it saying that Steke came to him asking to leave. Felix stated that he offered to keep and work with the Dutchman but that it was turned down in favor of finding another (read: better) opportunity. Felix of course went on to talk about having players that would "fight for the badge".
- The question then was posed about having the "right players" that would fight for the club that would present challenges and opposition for Magath. Felix was quick to respond saying that "most of the players" we have right here are fighting for the club and we have them right here.
- A very quick follow up to that was "Is Bryan Ruiz one of those players that wants to stay and fight for the club?" Magath actually sounded positive saying that "Ruiz is an outstanding player" but that followed that up with talk about "his situation" and "being 28" that he expected and understood that he would want to play at the highest level. Right now Magath wasn't sure that if Ruiz would or would not be part of the team moving forward.
- The reporter attempted to nail down the situation firmly by asking if Magath anticipated all three leaving the club soon. And Magath stated "yes, it was his understanding they were all looking for jobs playing at the highest level."
- Now talked turned about Fernando Amorebieta and what his future will hold this season. Laughing Magath said that "Managers and coaches are here to work with players and to help players but it's up to the players what they do and their situation" he followed that saying that the club had signed Hutchinson and Bodurov as well as having Burn and Burgess from the Academy.
Magath would go on to state that it would be and has been a competition for starting jobs. The best of players in his opinion generally come out through this process. He did state there was some problems with Amorebieta in training sessions at the beginning but since things have been worked out.
Felix went on to state that he doesn't know the contract status of the players and that players don't talk with him about other clubs. Which makes sense and I don't know if I missed something there or not.
Anyways... this is the long of it. Felix is Felix. I'm not sure if he's well liked among the supporters community but his blunt word choices are always fun.