Claudio Ranieri believes Fulham have under-achieved so far this season given the “exceptional talent” in their squad. The Italian has taken over as manager after chairman Shahid Khan decided to sack Slavisa Jokanovic, who departed on Wednesday with the club bottom of the Premier League with five points from 12 games.
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Ranieri has set his sights higher than mere survival after being given a “multi-year” contract.
Fulham were among the Premier League’s highest spenders in the summer following promotion from the Championship, shelling out approximately £100million to bolster their squad on the likes of Jean Michael Seri – previously linked with Barcelona – Andre Schurrle, Aleksandar Mitrovic and Alfie Mawson.
Ranieri believes he has inherited a strong group of players and is already looking up the table ahead of his first game in charge against fellow strugglers Southampton at Craven Cottage on November 24.
“The objective at Fulham should never be to merely survive in the Premier League. We must at all times be a difficult opponent and should expect to succeed,” said Ranieri, who has had a spell in charge of Ligue 1 Nantes since leaving Leicester in February 2017.
“This Fulham squad has exceptional talent that is contrary to its position in the table. I know this team is very capable of better performances, which we will work on straight away as we prepare for Southampton.”