Fulham manager Scott Parker accepts his side will have to take risks this season after they secured their first Premier League victory of the campaign with a dominant 2-0 win over West Brom.
Parker’s team moved clear of the relegation zone as goals from Bobby Decordova-Reid and Ola Aina inside the first half-hour gave the hosts a decisive lead at Craven Cottage and the Baggies found no way back.
The result pushed their winless opponents Albion into the bottom three, and Parker believes the Cottagers can continue to improve.
When asked about Aina’s powerful strike from outside the area, Parker said: “Great strike. It’s something we’ve spoken about since the start of the season really, the way we played last year and the way we’re going to have to play this year is probably a little bit… different in the sense that we’re going to have to take risks a little bit.
“We’re going to have to put balls into the right area and I think we are number one for crosses in the division, but certainly shots in and around the box we’re going to have to take a bit of risk and Ola did that – he took a shot and it’s flown into the top corner, so that was pleasing.”
Centre-back Joachim Andersen was made to wait for his Fulham debut after sustaining an injury just days after joining the club last month on loan from Lyon, but his first start coincided with a clean sheet, and he feels it is important now for the team to kick on.
Andersen told FFCtv: “It’s really important (to take momentum into next game). We need to believe that we have something to do. We played a great game and also in the other games I don’t think we did too bad, we just missed that last little touch and we had that today so we must continue to do that.”
West Brom manager Slaven Bilic was critical of his side after their defeat, singling out just two players – Conor Gallagher and Branislav Ivanovic – for praise.
Bilic said “I saw tonight a young kid Conor Gallagher and I saw Branislav Ivanovic. A very young guy and an older guy – they had more commitment.
“That’s not good when you can see two players that are doing more than the others and it looked to me like that and it can’t be the case.
“This is the league and we are the team that can’t rely on quality only, we have to dig in and work hard like we have done, especially in the last couple of games. If we can’t do that, we have no chance.”
The Baggies boss continued: “I don’t question the (general) commitment… I’ve said it looked really good (in previous games).
“I am talking about tonight and what it looked like, we did not have it. We were not good enough.”