Scott Parker knows what he is up against as he plots another upset

Sonia Twigg, PA
·2-min read

Fulham manager Scott Parker hailed Pep Guardiola as an “incredible coach” ahead of the visit of Manchester City to Craven Cottage on Saturday.

The Cottagers secured a 1-0 win at Anfield on Sunday, and currently sit in the Premier League relegation zone, but level on points with Brighton in 17th place and just one behind Newcastle.

City are arguably closing in on the title and their 21-game winning streak was only brought to an end by derby rivals Manchester United at the weekend.

In February, Guardiola had said the reason for the club’s success was the quality of their players, however Parker was full of praise for the manger’s own achievements.

“There’s some truth in that (Guardiola’s comments) but I think he’s being very modest,” the Fulham manager said.

“He’s an incredible coach, and you only have to look at his team and his set-up, while of course they have very, very good players and they’re privileged in that they can buy them, that team and the way they’re set up, the way they play, the way they move the ball, just everything about them, you can tell just watching them for a few minutes that this a team coached very, very well.

“That doesn’t surprise us because we’re arguably looking at one of the best coaches that I’ve seen.”

Fulham have 26 points, the same as the total number they amassed during their last Premier League season in 2018-19.

To view this content, you'll need to update your privacy settings.
Please click here to do so.

During that campaign, Parker became the third manager of the season in February, but this time round, Fulham have closed the gap to safety with three wins from their last six matches.

However, the manager would not be drawn into comments on Fulham’s chances on Saturday.

“You can’t (switch off against City),their quality all over the pitch in terms of structure, their positional play…they’re a threat in every single moment of the game.

“Out of possession they’re a threat, in terms of transitions, with the ball, the way they can move the ball – I think we understand that.

“So I think we realise, or certainly I do, the animal we’re playing against here, that from the the first moment…that focus in terms of defensive shape and that focus in those moments is going to be very key.”