Jol denies bust-up with Fulham defender

15:40 17 January 2013

Fulham

Fulham's John Arne Riise. Photo: Adam Davy/EMPICS

EMPICS Sport

Fulham boss Martin Jol has played down a reported rift with defender John Arne Riise.

Reports had surfaced that the two had been involved in a training-ground altercation and Riise’s brother Bjorn Helge, a former Fulham player himself, was quoted in Norway as criticising Jol’s managerial style.

But 57-year-old Jol feels his relationship with John Arne Riise has only deteriorated slightly since he dropped the Norway international from his starting line-up.

“My relationship was fantastic and is probably still OK, it is still good,” he said.

“You know as well as I do that it is the same all the time in England, if a player isn’t playing the reason is a bust-up, but I never had a bust-up with any player.”

Jol explained that the decision to drop John Arne Riise from the side came in the wake of poor results and that he expects the former Liverpool full-back to work hard to regain his place.

“I had good conversations with players and I had a conversation with him again today and there is no problem,” he said.

“I wanted to change a couple of things after the Liverpool game and that is what we did. He will fight for his place like any other player would do if he isn’t playing.”

Kieran Richardson was deployed as left-back for the draw against Wigan last weekend and Jol can also call on England Under-21 international Matthew Briggs.

If Riise cannot find a way back into the Fulham side, Jol has said he will leave the decision on whether he moves on in the hands of the player.

“I have a good relationship with John and I had a fantastic relationship when he was playing,” he said.

“That is speculation unless there is a club coming in for him, and I told him I have got a few other options there, if he is doing better in certain areas he will be a very good player for me and if not I have got other options.

“Obviously players want to play and if he is not playing the next couple of weeks it is up to him [if he wants to leave].”

Bjorn Helge Riise was quoted in the Norwegian press as saying he was ‘not surprised’ to hear his brother had fallen out with Jol, with quotes attributed to him which questioned the managerial style of the former Tottenham boss.

Jol said he had not read the comments but said the player, who now plays for Lillestrom, had called the club to deny making the alleged inflammatory remarks.

“I haven’t seen it, all I know is that he came back to Sarah [Brookes, Fulham’s communications director] and he was almost crying and said it is not true,” he said.

“I had a fantastic relationship with him. He said ‘I never said anything’ and I will take his word for it.

“Even when they have said something, because sometimes where there is smoke there is fire, you know that players will always try and get excuses because it is not nice to say you didn’t play because you weren’t playing good enough.”

It remains to be seen if John Arne Riise will feature in the Fulham squad for Saturday’s match at reigning Premier League champions Manchester City, where Jol will still be without injured duo Mahamadou Diarra and Kerim Frei.

Related articles

Sign up for our news alerts today!

Our editors' picks for the day's top news delivered to your inbox or phone.

Sign up for email alerts Sign up for mobile alerts
1
2 3 4 5 6
7

Latest Fulham news

Saturday, April 30, 2016
West Ham United's Andy Carroll celebrates scoring his side's second goal of the game from a penalty during the Barclays Premier League match at the King Power Stadium, Leicester.

We’ve picked out five fantastic bets ahead of a busy weekend of football both in the Premier League and the Football League where the race for the play-offs is hotting up.

Saturday, April 30, 2016
Charlton Athletic players walk onto the pitch before the game with Bolton

We round up all the injury and suspension news ahead of a big weekend of Championship action.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016
Who is this former Blue? (Ben Radford /Allsport)

From Henry to Hasselbaink, we all remember the Premier League’s star names during the noughties but how many of the less heralded faces can you recognise? Let us kno your score @London24Sport.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016
A view of Craven Cottage.  (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)

Fulham will be playing Championship football next season but they is plenty to sort in the coming months as fan blogger Adam Brons-Smith explains.

Saturday, April 23, 2016
Toby Alderweireld celebrates scoring Tottenham's second goal against Manchester United on Sunday

With season-defining matches for Spurs and Arsenal on the cards and a cup semi-final for Palace there is a bumper weekend of sport on the cards and our team have tried their best to predict it all.

What is this?

Near You Now

Don't Miss...

Competitions

Kindle 7 inch tablet

Are you looking for a brand new gadget to help you stay connected on the go and make that long journey home a bit more entertaining? Look no further. MyOffers is giving you the chance to win 1 of 50 Kindle Fire 7” Display Tablets! That’s 50 times more chances to win, so hurry up and enter our competition today and you could be one of our lucky winners!

Read more
Yummy traditional afternoon teas for two

MyOffers is giving you the chance to win 1 of 50 Traditional Afternoon Teas for two at a location of your choice! That’s 50 times more chances to win, so hurry up and enter our competition today and you could be one of our lucky winners!

Read more

Latest Tech News

Transport