FULHAM BAG BOSS!
Whites appoint Slavisa Jokanovic – and Cauley Woodrow says it’s a coup
CAULEY Woodrow was nowhere to be seen the last time Slavisa Jokanovic graced Craven Cottage. But having scored twice in front of his new boss on Tuesday night, the England Under-21 striker is hopeful of a new beginning at Fulham.
Jokanovic has agreed an 18month deal to take over in west London, ending the Whites’ painstaking eight-week search for a new boss.
In the 47year-old Serbian, they have gained someone with a pedigree for success in England, having successfully guided Watford out of the Championship last term – beating Fulham 5-0 en route.
That day, Woodrow was not named in the matchday 18.
But as Jokanovic, pictured below, took his place among the crowd for the 4-1 win over Rotherham 12 months on, Woodrow made his first league start of the season and produced a scintillating display.
And the 21-year-old believes Jokanovic can make an instant impact.
“I think it’s a coup,” said Woodrow. “What he did at Watford was great. Hopefully he can do that for us.
“We’ve had to wait a little while but the club wanted to get the right man, which is important to the squad. Now we’ve got the right man, hopefully we can kick on.
“He came in the changing room before the game and introduced himself. We’ll get to know him more and he’ll tell us what his ambitions are.
“He told us to enjoy the game, be solid and express ourselves. He didn’t come in at half-time.
“I don’t know if it gave us a lift. We go into every game trying to win. Every game is the same, but for us to get a win in front of the new manager has been great.
“He’s a big name and a big manager. Hopefully he can do well for the club and take us high up.”
Despite Fulham’s erratic form, Woodrow has had to sit and watch from the bench for large parts of the season with the highly-rated Moussa Dembele leading the line.
Thirty of his 46 career Championship appearances have been as a substitute and the goals have not been forthcoming.
But he showed all the poise of a polished striker to beat the Rotherham offside trap and round goalkeeper Lee Camp before finishing into an empty net.
And he then displayed a poacher’s instinct to sweep in Ross McCormack’s right-wing cross with a first-time finish.
Former Chelsea midfielder Jokanovic must have been impressed with what he witnessed on a night one of Fulham’s all-time great forwards Jimmy Hill was remembered, inset.
And Woodrow hopes that night was just the tip of the iceberg.
“It was my first start in the league this season,” he added.
“I’ve been waiting for my opportunity and I’d like to think I’ve opened people’s eyes and get a chance in upcoming games.
“I hope it’s a fresh start. I want to get more minutes and get as many goals as I can.
“It was a good game for me and for the team as well. For us to get the win was the main thing. For me to get two goals was nice.
“It’s down to the manager what team he picks. I did well against Rotherham and hopefully he has me in mind for upcoming games.”
HAIR-RAISING: Woodrow, right, celebrates one of his goals against the Millers ON THE BURST: Cauley Woodrow races forward against Rotherham in midweek