In August 2014, the bookies had Fulham down as 2/1 to bounce back up to the Premier League, according to Sky Bet and Oddschanger. Just a month after that, they were slumped down in 24th with 0 points on the board. Yet a turnaround came about, a fresh face entered the club, Kit Symons, youth boss turned First Team Manager. Skip ahead another two months and the promotion race was back on, Fulham found themselves just 8 points away from a Play-Off place.
Yet the saying 'all is well that ends well' is coming back to bite. Fulham's peak in the middle of November has not been followed through, in contrast to Sheffield Wednesday, Leeds United and Birmingham City - all three have shown a complete turnaround in form and are looking at a play off place. Instead, the Whites have crumbled from 13th and promising to 20th and truly dark. And the future doesn't look much brighter:
Fulham's next three fixtures:
vs Derby (1st)
vs Bournemouth (4th)
vs Watford (6th)
Not many would put Fulham down to get even 1 point from those three. Based on match forecasts and point predictions, when these three games are done and dusted, Fulham will be sat in 22nd... Poised for relegation.
However, it will please Fulham fans to know that 7 of their last 10 games are against teams who currently find themselves in the bottom half of the league. These games will be key in Symons' season and could keep the Cottagers' stable for once. Stability could help to launch the club back into victory after two seasons of dismay, torture and helplessness.
If Fulham are to pay the ultimate price, however, there will be very little that can happen to prevent the club from falling into the vicious spiral, they could become the next Portsmouth. And over 150 goals conceded in the last 2 seasons is not a good sign when you think that it could be getting worse. There will be a fine line between success (staying up) and failure (going down), but it is clear to see that the consequences will be worth far more. If last year's Premier League relegation has taught the club anything, it's that relegation is the worst possible scenario for everyone associated, and it needs to be avoided. NEEDS to be avoided.
Symons will need the backing of the fans and the board to help Fulham turnaround their form, and not to mention a new defensive coach. But remember that when the club are at their worst, they need our support even more.