He was expected to be the man to fire in the goals for Fulham to try and keep them in the Premier League last season, but Aleksandar Mitrovic couldn’t be the one that Scott Parker could rely on.
After scoring 26 goals in 41 Championship outings the season prior, Mitrovic was in tip-top form upon his return to the top flight, where he last scored 11 times in the 2018-19 season.
Following his brace against Leeds in the second game of this past season, it looked like a prolific season was coming again for the 26-year-old – but he didn’t score again until April as a loss of form, a positive COVID test and a stint on the bench restricted him to just three goals all season.
Mitrovic may now not remain at Craven Cottage for next season, with the likes of AS Roma and Jose Mourinho being linked with his signature – but is he good enough to be a top flight player in a major country?
A former Fulham manager, Lawrie Sanchez still watches the Cottagers a lot and he will have got to see a lot of Mitrovic in the Premier League – and he has serious doubts that the Serb is anything more than Championship quality.
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Speaking exclusively to Football League World, Sanchez said: “I don’t know what happened with Mitrovic. I saw him sat on the bench towards the end of season at Fulham last year and I’m thinking ‘he’s the only one who scores goals at Fulham isn’t he?’
“But he certainly does it in the Championship – perhaps he is a Championship player. Some players are of that level, and not quite the top level.
“If your manager is not playing you when you can’t score goals and fighting relegation and you’re a centre forward, then there’s got to be something wrong.”