Parker must reward “top player” with start against Leicester; much better than Lemina – opinion
After an impressive display from the bench in Fulham’s 3-2 defeat against Everton last weekend, Scott Parker must trust Chelsea loanee Ruben Loftus-Cheek with a start in the Cottagers’ next game against Leicester City.
The West London club travel to the King Power Stadium on Monday in the hope of picking up their first away win of the 2020/21 Premier League season.
Parker’s side produced a promising second-half display against the Toffees in their last fixture but despite pushing hard for an equaliser in the late stages of the game, they fell to a 3-2 defeat.
One man who impressed with his display against Carlo Ancelotti’s side was Loftus-Cheek, as he came off the bench to score Fulham’s second goal, which earned him a 7.71 rating from WhoScored.
The England international was far better than teammate Mario Lemina, with the Gabonese midfielder earning a shocking 6.23 rating for his performance in the same game, so surely Parker won’t opt to start the Southampton loanee again on Monday night.
Following the game, the Fulham manager was full of praise for Loftus-Cheek, saying:
“I thought he was brilliant. Ruben came in and we’ve worked really hard together, in terms of the information I’m trying to give him and how he can have a big impact on the pitch.
“Sometimes I feel as if Ruben has a tendency for games to drift by him, and today was everything that we spoke about with him.
“He came on and made a real difference. He looked every bit of a top, top player.
“He got the ball, was brave, scored a goal, got in the box, and was dynamic in between the lines.
“He’s got a real ability and he’ll be big for us this year. He needs to keep working on it and keep listening to what we’re saying.
“No doubt he’ll keep improving like we’ve seen today.” (per West London Sport)
You could also argue that Loftus-Cheek has a lot to prove during his time with Fulham, as he will no doubt be pushing for a spot in Gareth Southgate’s England squad for the Euros next summer, so will be desperate to impress.
The injury-prone 24-year-old must also ensure that he performs with Fulham, otherwise, he may well be axed by Chelsea boss Frank Lampard next summer, considering the number of top-quality players the Blues brought in over the summer.
Therefore, Parker should reward his impressive display against Everton with a start against Leicester City on Monday in the hope that he can inspire the Cottagers to just their second Premier League win of the season.
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Source: Football – Football Fan Cast