Alfie Mawson has made just three substitute appearances in the Championship this season as the fierce competition for places at Craven Cottage continues to limit opportunities for even the most competent second tier players.
Going into his fourth season at the club Mawson is yet to reach 50 appearances for Fulham however he still feels like he has a role to play outside of the starting XI, he explained this when speaking to The Athletic.
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He said: “The gaffer said before training the other day that it’s not only the starting 11 and the benches, it’s all the lads who are fighting to get on the bench.
“The lads on the pitch are looking after their spot, we’ve got to look after ours on the bench as well, because there will be lads coming in. The healthy competition is brilliant.
“I’m ready when he wants me. He can count on me to play and count on me to be around the lads when I’m not playing. I feel like I’ve got a role.” he added.
Tim Ream and Tosin Adarabioyo are building a very effective relationship at the heart of defence and with Michael Hector completing the match against Leeds United in the cup this week, Mawson could fall even further down the pecking order.
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Towards the back end of his time at Swansea City Mawson forced his way into the England squad, now he is not even first choice in the Championship which portrays a significant regression by the age of 27.
His words suggest that he is comfortable in a less demanding squad role, it would have been a healthy deal that brought him to the Cottage in 2018 to which ends this summer and so hopefully he can kick on and get back to his best away from Fulham next season.
Fulham travel to Bristol City on Saturday, where Mawson went on loan last term, knowing that a win could take them back to the summit of the division.