Fulham boss Parker: We’re not only Premier League side that needs to tighten up defensively

BY NICK KITUNO

Scott Parker has insisted Fulham are not the only Premier League side with worries at the back as he seeks to tighten up the defence in their fight for survival.

The Whites have conceded seven goals in their opening two league games since returning to the top-tier but have kept successive clean sheets in the EFL Cup.

Another shut out at home to Sheffield Wednesday in midweek has teed up a Championship play-off final rematch with Brentford, but Parker believes rearguard solidity is the key to their success this season.

He said: “We realise that we are not the only team in this league, at this moment in time, that is letting in a lot of goals.There’s a lot of teams in this situation. That’s the division you’re in, there’s a lot of goals going in, but certainly, you’re right.

“It’s key to build on clean sheets and get into the habit, and certainly get into a mindset, of really making it vitally important because they are going to be crucial for us this year. It was a good thing tonight that [against Wednesday] we managed to keep a clean sheet and score a couple.

“It’s well-documented we’re trying to bring players in as well to help us along the way, but overall I think the main factor is, like I said, there’s a lot of teams in this division at this moment in time who have conceded a lot of goals. They will be saying the same thing.”

First-half goals from Aboubakar Kamara and Bobby Decordova-Reid helped seal a 2-0 win against Wednesday, but goalkeeper Marek Rodak found himself busy between the sticks as the opposition forced him into some crucial saves.

Although Fulham have been linked with defenders such as former Barcelona man Marlon Santos and Huddersfield Town’s Terence Kongolo, Parker believes keeping goals out is a whole team effort.

He added: “You realise you want to keep that door shut, and every day we come in, we try and get better, we learn from our mistakes and we have to keep improving as a team. It’s not just the defenders, it’s the team, it’s a collective thing.

“We are doing that, and we will do that, I’m hoping we will do that, and we’ll get where we need to get.”


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