Fulham manager Felix Magath 'convinced' club will avoid relegation

Team has 'developed' in the last 14 days says the German coach

Fulham manager Felix Magath is certain the Premier League's bottom club will win their fight to avoid relegation.

Fulham are four points adrift of safety with 10 games remaining, six coming against teams in the bottom half of the table, including Saturday's at 19th-placed Cardiff.

"I'm convinced that we will avoid relegation because we've developed in the last 14 days," said Magath, who was appointed last month.

"The team is growing together and that is what makes me sure that we can avoid relegation."

Three points at Cardiff would provide a welcome boost, Magath admits, but the west London club are not too worried about their predicament at present.

Magath added: "These three points are very important for us, not only to step up from the last place, we need a win for ourselves, for our confidence.

"I get the feeling here that everybody knows that and everybody sleeps well with the knowledge there are games ahead of us we can win.

"We are in London, we are not in Cardiff or Sunderland where the whole city is interested in playing Premier League.

"The atmosphere here is really relaxed for the situation we are in; it's not typical for a team fighting against relegation.

"We have to be aware that we are not only dreaming, but everybody has to put in a shift and push the team and push the players to give their best."

Magath knows that relaxed approach cannot filter through to his players, but he is undecided if Kostas Mitroglou will feature in Wales, despite the £12million striker playing an hour for Greece in midweek.

"He is not match fit," Magath said.

"He played only 60 minutes and has hamstring problems. We have to wait, he comes back today, our doctor has to see him and maybe if he is fit he will play.

"We need a player in our situation who is prepared for 90 minutes relegation fight."

Mitroglou's situation has confused Fulham fans, but Magath insists it is unfair to heap hopes on a player who will take time to adapt to English football.

The manager said: "The Premier League is the best league in the world, so it cannot be compared with the Greek League. Every player who comes from the Greek League needs a few weeks to adapt.

"You cannot expect such a lot from a player who is new in the Premier League. You have to give him time to adapt.

"We know that and we make a contract with Mitroglu not for the game against Liverpool or Manchester United, but for the last games.

"If he's not fit now, he will be fit next week."

As a result Mitroglou was not risked for last week's loss to Chelsea.

Magath added: "Why should I spoil him in a game like Chelsea? Chelsea is the best defending team in the league and so we would get not many chances against Chelsea.

"He's new and he needs confidence, too. To get used is not good for him and not good for us."

Lewis Holtby, on loan from Tottenham, also did not start.

The forward, who played under Magath at Schalke, has been told he is not the right sort of player for a relegation fight, but may be given a chance against Cardiff, where he may have more space to play to his strengths.

Magath added: "We are not in a normal situation. Now is not the time to play very well, now is the time to fight.

"Lewis Holtby is not a fighter. He is very smart, he is a very skilful offensive player who has very good passes.

"A game against Chelsea, the best team in the league, we had not much space to create chances and therefore he was out for that game. Saturday is another game. We will see."

PA

Suggested Topics
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
A still from the Jurassic World trailer
film

Video: The official full-length trailer for the Jurassic Park sequel has dropped – two days early

Environment
The plant ‘Nepenthes zygon’ was donated to Kew in 2004
environmentNepenthes zygon had been growing for almost a decade and helping to keep down cockroaches
News
This artist impression shows a modern-day Atlantis
news
Arts and Entertainment
booksPhotographer snapped celebrities for 40 years - but it wasn’t all fun and games
News
i100
Sport
Aguero - who single-handedly has kept City's Champions League dreams alive - celebrates his dramatic late winner
footballManchester City 3 Bayern Munich 2: Argentine's late hat-rick sees home side snatch vital victory
News
peopleSinger tells The Independent what life is like in rehab in an exclusive video interview
News
Muhammad Ali pictured in better health in 2006
peopleBut he has enjoyed publicity from his alleged near-death experience
Arts and Entertainment
Tony breaks into Ian Garrett's yacht and makes a shocking discovery
TVReview: Revelations continue to make this drama a tough watch
News
news
News
The assumption that women are not as competent in leadership positions as men are leads to increased stress in the workplace
science... and it's down to gender stereotypes
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Drifting and forgotten - turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Our partner charities help veterans on the brink – and get them back on their feet
Putin’s far-right ambition: Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU

Putin’s far-right ambition

Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU
Tove Jansson's Moominland: What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?

Escape to Moominland

What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?
Nightclubbing with Richard Young: The story behind his latest book of celebrity photographs

24-Hour party person

Photographer Richard Young has been snapping celebrities at play for 40 years. As his latest book is released, he reveals that it wasn’t all fun and games
Michelle Obama's school dinners: America’s children have a message for the First Lady

A taste for rebellion

US children have started an online protest against Michelle Obama’s drive for healthy school meals by posting photos of their lunches
Colouring books for adults: How the French are going crazy for Crayolas

Colouring books for adults

How the French are going crazy for Crayolas
Jack Thorne's play 'Hope': What would you do as a local politician faced with an impossible choice of cuts?

What would you do as a local politician faced with an impossible choice of cuts?

Playwright Jack Thorne's latest work 'Hope' poses the question to audiences
Ed Harcourt on Romeo Beckham and life as a court composer at Burberry

Call me Ed Mozart

Paloma Faith, Lana del Ray... Romeo Beckham. Ed Harcourt has proved that he can write for them all. But it took a personal crisis to turn him from indie star to writer-for-hire
10 best stocking fillers for foodies

Festive treats: 10 best stocking fillers for foodies

From boozy milk to wasabi, give the food-lover in your life some extra-special, unusual treats to wake up to on Christmas morning
Phil Hughes head injury: He had one weakness – it has come back to haunt him

Phil Hughes had one weakness – it has come back to haunt him

Prolific opener had world at his feet until Harmison and Flintoff bounced him
'I have an age of attraction that starts as low as four': How do you deal with a paedophile who has never committed a crime?

'I am a paedophile'

Is our approach to sex offenders helping to create more victims?
How bad do you have to be to lose a Home Office contract?

How bad do you have to be to lose a Home Office contract?

Serco given Yarl’s Wood immigration contract despite ‘vast failings’
Green Party on the march in Bristol: From a lost deposit to victory

From a lost deposit to victory

Green Party on the march in Bristol
Putting the grot right into Santa's grotto

Winter blunderlands

Putting the grot into grotto
'It just came to us, why not do it naked?' London's first nude free runner captured in breathtaking images across capital

'It just came to us, why not do it naked?'

London's first nude free runner captured in breathtaking images across capital