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Coventry boss Coleman: Fulham relegation battle good reality check

Coventry boss Chris Coleman believes Fulham's survival bid will be a good reality check for fans at his former club.

"This could turn out to be a blessing in disguise," said the 37-year-old Welshman, sacked by the Cottagers 13 months ago. "It will sober up those people who think they should be a top 10 club. They don't have 40,000 supporters, they don't have a top 10 budget. Why should they be top 10?

"Fulham are a great little club but that's what they are, a great little club. I hope they stay up and I hope they stop being unrealistic. If that happens they can be Premier League for a long time to come. When people get unrealistic, that's when the wheels come off."

Fulham's late revival is widely credited to the return of Brian McBride and Jimmy Bullard after serious knee injuries.

"It's not a coincidence," Coleman told the Daily Mail. "They're two great players and two great leaders. Brian is the consummate professional. He's a great target man, he scores goals and will give you blood, sweat and tears every time he pulls his jersey on.

"Jimmy is loud and confident, getting into everyone's ear in the dressing room. He plays with a smile on his face. On top of that he has quality. I wouldn't want to heap blame on him but I might still be there if he wasn't injured. We played a style to suit Jimmy. We had great legs in midfield with Michael Brown and Papa Bouba Diop. We missed his invention. He suffered and I suffered."

Coleman played briefly for Hodgson at Blackburn and believes the latest Fulham boss will succeed if he is given time.

"He is a very good coach with a vast knowledge," said Coleman. "If they stay up, he's done a great job. If they go down they need to hang onto him. People will say it's his fault but look at where they were when he came in. He's the right man for the job. You can't keep changing managers every five minutes."

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Tribal Football Staff

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