EFL Reporter @simgholam
Championship, League One and League Two talking points: Five things to look out for on Saturday
Watch Fulham vs West Brom live on Sky Sports Football from 12pm on Saturday; Kick-off 12.30pm
Last Updated: 14/09/19 4:27pm
Should Scott Parker be getting more out of Fulham? Is this Nathan Jones' last chance at Stoke? How will Lincoln survive without the Cowleys?
Here are five things to look out for in the Sky Bet EFL on Saturday...
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Should Parker be getting more out of Fulham?
On paper, Fulham have one of the best attacks ever seen in the Championship. Aleksandar Mitrovic would still walk into a No 9 role at a fair few Premier League clubs, Anthony Knockaert and Tom Cairney were the best players in the league last time they featured in a full campaign at this level and Ivan Cavaleiro was also a star performer for Wolves who more than held his own when called upon in the Premier League.
Having blown Millwall away a few weeks ago, it looked as though they had the capacity to romp this league, but have since stumbled to a 2-1 home defeat against Nottingham Forest and a 1-1 draw at an under-performing Cardiff. They have the capability to put a few goals past any side but there has been some suggestion that under Scott Parker they can be too predictable.
"Compared to some of the recent manager appointments at Craven Cottage - in particular Felix Magath - Parker has actually made a decent start to his managerial career," Fulham podcaster George Singer told Sky Sports.
"However, there are some worrying trends that he needs to quickly rectify - notably his tactical stubbornness and poor in-game management. I'm figuring he'll naturally improve in this regard. However, he needs to fix it quick as time is ticking fast if we want a realistic stab at automatic promotion, which is the club's clearly stated aim."
Parker faces his sternest examination of the season so far as West Brom visit Craven Cottage on Saturday, live on Sky Sports Football. We are likely to learn a lot more about him then.
Last-chance saloon for Jones?
Stoke have already cropped up a few times in this column this season but, frankly, as long as a club of their status and ambition continue to prop up the division, they will be a difficult topic to avoid.
The level of patience that the club's hierarchy have shown with Nathan Jones is impressive, but there is little doubting that things need to improve swiftly, and he knows it.
It would seem a strange decision to not use the opportunity of the international break to change managers, only to then immediately fire Jones if they lose to Bristol City on Saturday, but one more damaging defeat could well be the tipping point.
Some of the data suggests that they haven't been performing as badly as their results, and it is individual mistakes at both ends of the pitch that have largely cost them so far.
"We are not hiding away from it, we haven't been good enough and we need some big results," admitted striker Sam Vokes, who has only scored in the Carabao Cup so far this season. "We've played some good football and had some bad luck along the way, but it's about getting those first three points and we know it's what the fans want to see. Results haven't been up to standard and there's only one way to turn it and we want a result Saturday."
Lincoln start life without Cowley
Rarely does a manager become so synonymous with a club in just three-and-a-half years as Danny Cowley - and brother Nicky - became with Lincoln City, but inevitable nature of the English football pyramid is that their incredible success at Sincil Bank was always going to lead them elsewhere eventually.
There has been some surprise that their next destination is Huddersfield, who have struggled badly so far this season, but when you consider the human element - that Danny and Nicky were PE teachers and part-time coaches not so long ago - it becomes easier to understand the inability to resist the temptation of taking over a club that were in the Premier League just four months ago.
Danny Cowley interview
Danny Cowley discusses taking the job at Huddersfield, the difficulty of leaving Lincoln and his Championship Manager childhood.
"Nicky and I have a burning ambition to challenge ourselves at the highest possible level," Cowley told Lincoln's official website upon his departure. "We don't know if an opportunity as good as this one will come around again and we never want to live with regret.
"It has been the greatest privileges for Nicky and I, to manage Lincoln City FC. We will forever hold this football club in our hearts and with Concord Rangers FC it will always be the first result that we look for. We will never ever forget the support we have had and know that we would not be in this fortunate position without all of you."
Two promotions, an EFL Trophy win and an FA Cup quarter-final appearance as a non-league side, the Cowley brothers will be a tough act to follow. First-team coaches Jamie McCombe and Andy Warrington take caretaker charge against Bristol Rovers on Saturday.
Bolton's new era at the New York
It really is the start of a new era for Bolton Wanderers now. A new manager in the dugout in Keith Hill and potentially a completely new side on the pitch for their trip to Rotherham.
Ignoring the reality of their situation - they are 16 points adrift of safety thanks to their points deduction - it is set to be an afternoon of hope and enthusiasm for the Trotters at the New York Stadium.
Bolton announced nine new signings on Deadline Day, and all could take to the field apart from Joe Bunney, who was injured earlier this week in a road accident, in an attempt to end a run of three-straight 5-0 defeats.
"Our season starts now, it's brilliant what the kids have done, they've been absolutely superb, we're really thankful for them but we are now starting our season," said new boss Hill.
"We don't want to play 39 friendlies, we want to be competitive in the league - and we will be. We are not here to write this season off and ready the football club for next season, this season is alive and kicking."
Sampson takes charge at Stevenage
Dino Maamria may have led Stevenage to within a point of the play-offs last season, but that was enough to secure him just seven winless games at the start of this campaign before being dismissed earlier this week.
In his place comes the intriguing caretaker appointment of Mark Sampson, the former England Women's head coach who was sacked amid a flurry of controversy in 2017 after four years at the helm.
Sampson, 36, has been at Stevenage for just over two months, having been appointed as a first-team coach in July. But the announcement of his caretaker role was almost immediately followed by a fresh round of allegations of racially discriminatory language against him, which were immediately refuted by the club.
Sampson himself just wanted to focus on the departure of club legend Maamria and the upcoming game against Carlisle. "It has been a difficult period and it is never nice when a member of staff, a colleague, loses their job and somebody who was so heavily connected to the football club over many years," he said. "It is now up for us to try and find a way to move forward now.
"That level of professionalism has been outstanding and their reaction since Sunday's news has been a credit to them not just as players but as human beings. The staff and the players have come together and really helped create a positive mood and we are working really hard on the training pitch to get a positive result on Saturday."