History of Fulham Football Club

Les Strong Makes 300th Appearance

16 February 1980 Fulham left-back Les Strong played his 300th League game for the Whites in a 4-0 loss away at Luton Town. He would go onto make 427 appearances in total, including 373 in the league.

Fulham Relegated To Division Three

3 May 1980 The Whites finished 20th on 29 points and six away from safety, meaning they would play the next season in the third tier of English football.

Macdonald Named Manager

August 1980 In the summer of 1980, Malcolm Macdonald was named the new Fulham Manager for the start of the 1980/81 season. His initial return to the Cottage in a business-related role was an attempt to rebuild his career but many people had reservations when he stepped up to the Manager's job. Any misgivings the supporters might have had, however, were soon dispelled as Macdonald was to prove a revelation in the job.

Macdonald's strength was to name good coaches alongside him, first Roger Thompson, a colleague from Arsenal days, and then Ray Harford, who was working with the juniors at Colchester United, and Terry Mancini. In less than a year, with no additional outlay on new players, there was a remarkable transformation at the Cottage and Fulham had a team that was not only successful but one that was winning with style.

Promotion came in 1982 to Division Two and for much of the following season, Fulham looked a short-odds bet to jump straight back into the top flight, but the momentum started to slow early in the New Year. After this, the team went off the boil and he departed Fulham in the spring of 1984.