Overachieving Fulham comes into the new 2023-24 Premier League season at the weekend with a fair chance at claiming all three points on the road against an underwhelming Everton who will once again be under the microscope after nearly being relegated to the Championship last season.
Marco Silva has done wonders with a Cottagers side last term, guiding them to a top-half finish after they regained Premier League status, but there are still questions that need answering along the Thames if they are to perform to a similar level this time around.
Questions surrounding star striker Aleksandar Mitrović and veteran winger Willian, both of whom could very well be off to Saudi Arabia to join the mass exodus to the Roshn Saudi League, have seen the club bring in Mexican international frontman Raúl Jiménez from Wolves, while also reinforced the center of the back four with Nigerian international Calvin Bassey.
In an upcoming season that sees the Premier League chock-full of talent, perhaps even more than last season, and the likes of Chelsea sure to improve on their performance last term, the Cottagers should be safe from the drop but will have to do exceptionally well to finish in the top half of the table for consecutive seasons.
Marco Silva has two key concerns coming into the opening weekend of action against Everton at Goodison Park on account of central pair João Palhinha and Tom Cairney set to be deemed unavailable due to injury, which should see Harry Reed and Saša Lukić deployed in midfield.
Newboy Raúl Jiménez is all but guaranteed to lead the line on Saturday given the previously mentioned questions surrounding Aleksandar Mitrović, and much of the same can be said for Jamaican international Bobby De Cordova-Reid due to Willian’s future also being in doubt.
Nigerian center-back Calvin Bassey should be called upon here as he returns to the UK Isles after a stint with Dutch giants Ajax in the wake of his coming out party with Glasgow Rangers, and should partner United States international Tim Ream in the center of the back four.