Fulham boss Martin Jol has sounded a note of caution over their Barclays Premier League match at Crystal Palace tonight, claiming Ian Holloway's boys have greater potential than their lowly position on the table would suggest.
Crystal Palace have just three points from their first seven games since their return to the top flight, with only Sunderland keeping them off the foot of the table.
However, Jol does not believe the statistics tell the full story about Holloway's managerial skills.
"I remember Ian Holloway doing an unbelievable job at Blackpool. He played a different system, a very progressive 4-3-3 and he did it again with Crystal Palace," said the Dutchman.
"So I still feel that the man is doing a good job, but the results are not going for them.
"It's not easy to go away from home to play against these teams. But I think we've got the players and the quality to get the result.
"They [Crystal Palace] need the points as well and it's the Barclays Premier League, so it will be difficult," he said.
Fulham themselves need points, with only seven from seven matches so far this season.
Their form has naturally led to reports that Jol's job at Craven Cottage is under threat, with speculation rife after their 2-1 loss to Cardiff in September.
Their most recent outing - a 1-0 home victory over Stoke - helped subdue the tempers of frustrated fans somewhat, and Jol knows another win could see them jump to mid-table and turn their season around.
"We've got a great team spirit. The only problem we have is we had an indifferent result against Cardiff, but Cardiff beat Manchester City as well. So they're all strong these teams," he said.
"But we will fight like other teams and we will try to get the results like other teams and you will have good spells and bad spells, especially clubs like Fulham.
"All the other bottom 10 clubs, they will all have the same spells as we do. And I think for the top clubs, and there are six now in England - it's no longer a top four, it will be difficult to get into this top six," he said.
Dimitar Berbatov is expected to take to the pitch having used the international break to get over a knock he picked up against Stoke, while Scott Parker could make a welcome return to Fulham's midfield if he's recovered from his calf problem.
Aaron Hughes is also expected to return after a few weeks off the pitch with a thigh injury.
- More about:
- Crystal Palace FC