I will get best from Bent - Jol
Published 06/10/2013 | 14:06
Fulham manager Martin Jol has pledged to get Darren Bent back to his best after a confidence-sapping year.
The 29-year-old arrived at Aston Villa in January 2011 to much fanfare, joining in an £18million deal that could have reached as high as £24million.
However, after impressing under Gerard Houllier and Alex McLeish, Bent dropped down the pecking order under Paul Lambert.
Unwanted at Villa Park, he penned a season-long loan deal with Fulham this summer and on Saturday repaid Jol's faith by scoring the winner in the 1-0 victory against Stoke.
It was Bent's third of the season and Jol has pledged to get him firing on all cylinders again, believing he can play in tandem with Dimitar Berbatov.
"They always have a good season if they are with me and Darren Bent will have a good season," the Whites boss said.
"The only thing is if you don't start him he could fall back in the same mood.
"But I spoke to him a couple of times, I spoke to him on Friday and he knows what my intentions are and that we want to build up scenarios for games like we did.
"Sometimes he can't start, but my intentions are still to use Darren Bent and to get the best out of Dimitar Berbatov and Darren Bent together.
"That is not easy because you need time to work on that system."
Bent's impact after coming off the bench against Stoke looks to have secured Jol's position at the helm.
Now, having ended a five-match winless streak, the Dutchman wants to give the fans something to smile about after a rough start.
"I think if you are a club like Fulham you have to be patient," he said.
"Somebody told me before the game that three years ago, with Mark Hughes, at the start of the season they had six points out of eight games.
"It is not a new situation for our fans. I want to make them happy with better football, being in control, but we shouldn't get carried away sometimes with unbelievable positions.
"Last year we were number one in the league at one stage and they thought we would be in the top four.
"We want to be in the top 10, but it won't be a big struggle for us to get out of that situation.
"The mentality of my players will probably do that, to get better and be where we should be."
While delighted with the win, Jol conceded his side need to play much better than they did against Stoke.
City dominated for large parts of the game and the loss stunned captain Ryan Shawcross.
"It was one of those days where things just didn't go our way, and to be honest it is hard to take because we couldn't have been any more dominant," he told Stoke City Player.
"I thought we controlled the game, and never ever looked in any danger of taking nothing away with us.
"We need to be more ruthless though - there is no doubt about that. We had chances but again weren't able to put any of them away and that has cost us dearly in the end.
"The game should have been won before their goal in truth, but we can't get ourselves too down because there are positives to take away with us.
"We need to get some points on the board starting against West Brom in two weeks' time. It's difficult to take this defeat, but we will move on from it and we will look to get the right result in two weeks' time."