Relegation from the Premier League was a bad period in the history of Fulham Football Club. But out of the darkness has come a beacon of promise in the shape of Lasse Vigen Christensen. The emergence of the 20-year-old gave Whites fans plenty of reason to cheer last season.
“We started off with a brand new team and a different manager to what we have now,” Lasse tells the June edition of our digital magazine, Fultime. “Every manager will have his take on things and will pick his team. I wasn’t getting as much time as I wanted, I was hoping to play from the start of the season, but it wasn’t to be.
“I tried to do everything I could, and when the [managerial] change did come I was ready, physically and mentally. I was fit and I did everything I needed to do to take the chance and perform when Kit Symons came in. From then on I needed a few games to find my feet, but when you get more comfortable you get more confident and you start to show what you can do.
“I had a long run of games, I was happy and we won a lot. I scored and set up a lot of goals but then I had a little knock with the hamstring injury, which was a downer for me.”
His consistent displays for the Whites didn’t go unnoticed elsewhere, either. January saw the rumour mill churn out a supposed incoming bid from Aston Villa - “five mil!” shouts fellow Fultime interviewee Marcus Bettinelli from across the lounge, kindly letting us know the value of this theoretical offer for his teammate.
“I don’t know about that myself, I don’t spend a lot of time looking at things like that,” Lasse explains. “I heard a bit from the lads but there was no way I was going to leave in January. It’s nice people saying that - anyone would be lying if they said it isn’t nice to get that appreciation from clubs in the best division.
“It would have been stupid for me to go in January. I’d only just got in the team and I still have lots to learn and do. I’ve been at this Club for a fairly long time, and when you’re connected to a club you want to see them do well. I want to see Fulham back in the Premier League, that’s all I’m thinking about.
“On a personal level I want to play as many games as I can here. It would be like hitting my head against a brick wall if I went anywhere having only played 20 or 30 games. There was no chance of me going anywhere.”
As we end what has been an undoubtedly transitional season for the Whites, Christensen has no ambiguity in his mind as to what he wants Fulham to be aiming for next term.
“The Premier League has to be the goal for any player,” he insists. “Fulham is a Premier League club if you ask me. I came to a Premier League club. All the players here have that aim to get to the top flight. What makes it so hard is that 23 other teams have that same aim.
“It’s not just us who can’t do it in one season after getting relegated. It’s a transitional process, reshaping the team for the future. That’s what we’re doing now and hopefully we’ll look to be up there next year.
“This season we only started getting points after eight games of the campaign and that gives you a mountain to climb. Come the end of the season Kit will have a chance to shape the team how he wants, with the players he wants, and look to a better start than one point in eight if we want to be anywhere near promotion at the end of the campaign. Next season we’ll be more prepared as individuals and as a team for our goal of reaching the Premier League. We’re looking to give it a right go.”
To read the full interview with Christensen, check out the summer edition of Fultime, which is free for all Season Ticket Holders and Members.
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