Magath confident Fulham can avoid relegation
21 February 2014, 08:11
London - Fulham can avoid relegation from the Premier League if they win six of their final 12 matches, new manager Felix Magath said at his first press conference as manager on Thursday.
The league's bottom team visit 17th placed West Bromwich Albion on Saturday in what Magath has labelled the most important game in the west London club's history.
Four points separate West Brom from Fulham, who have not won in the league since beating West Ham United 2-1 on Jan. 1.
"We have to concentrate on the next 12 games, especially on the game on Saturday against West Brom," Magath told reporters.
"It is probably the most important game in this club's history."
The 60-year-old, who has replaced Rene Meulensteen on an 18-month contract, was convinced his side could avoid relegation despite their lowly position in the table.
Magath has built a solid reputation in his native Germany for helping steer relegation threatened clubs to safety after he led VfB Stuttgart, Eintracht Frankfurt and more recently VfL Wolfsburg out of the shadows.
The appointment is Magath's first outside his home country where he won three Bundesliga titles as manager - twice with Bayern Munich in 2005 and 2006 and with Wolfsburg in 2009.
"I'm convinced what we need to do, and convinced we can avoid relegation," he said.
"We are not in a time to develop something, only to make points. We are behind others. It's not enough for us to draw, we have to win.
"Now we have a special situation, it is not the time to dream. We have to work, we have to stand together and fight against relegation.
"I am sure we will avoid relegation with this team. I've worked with other clubs at the bottom - Stuttgart, Eintracht Frankfurt and Werder Bremen - and I have never been relegated."
Criticism from players at his previous clubs over Magath's training methods, which put an emphasis on discipline and fitness, were also dismissed when he said: "Ask the good players and you will get the right answers. I'm very nice."