Yes folks, it's that time of year when editors get frivolous and allow the hacks to spin out their highs and lows of 2010. We're no different.
From 2010 I guarantee nobody in the Fulham camp predicted the rise and fall in club fortunes over the past year. Last Christmas saw us basking in a 3-0 demolition of Manchester United with enough points on the board at the mid-point in the season to laugh off any suggestions of relegation. Bobby was building his reputation week on week to the point where England recognition became compelling, and while Roy maintained an ultra-conservative approach to away matches, we were a very tough nut to crack at home.
Into January we picked up injuries to Clint and BZ that saw us putting out a makeshift side for a while and at the Lane by the end of Jan we were poor on a freezing night. Spurs this New Year's Day will be tougher still - the big difference this time around, Fulham now sit in the bottom three. And who would have predicted that at year's end after the euphoria of the Europa League run? Had we lost at Stoke we would now be rock bottom!
But there's no sentiment in football. It's a school of hard knocks where rewards are great but the spectre of failure is often only the width of a crossbar away. Has Hughes just been an unlucky manager with his last two teams or is he really not up to the mark? Despite that outrageous win at Stoke we soon find ourselves back in the relegation places - indeed of the two holiday fixtures to date the West Ham debacle was far more significant, indicative of a team that has lost its way. We remain a toothless tiger up front, with no evidence Hughes can reverse the downward spiral for a few more weeks yet.
Inspired signings quickly are crucial. And they need to make an immediate impact, which mitigates against the introduction of players new to the Premier League. All in all, the pressures on Mark to keep his job beyond 3rd round FA Cup day remain immense.
So what would be your highs and lows from the past 12 months? Without stating the obvious, give us a different slant on the Europa League campaign. I can't imagine it was easy following the nights of high drama at the Cottage against Shakhtar, Juve and the Germans during normal U.S. office hours for a start!
One final thought before the club start throwing money around in a panic. If there aint much quality out there, let's get creative with loan signings. Jamie O'Hara for starters (if fit) or Matt Taylor. If we've £2 million to spare lure Charlie Adam down from Blackpool to run midfield, I'm sure he can be tempted away from Holloway's rigid wage structure.
And talking of Blackpool - the board please take note. In the last year of published figures the Tangerines laid out £45,000 in agents fees, Fulham £2.2 million (and they call us a 'little club').
Tell the sharks to get lost...it can be done.
COYW - a point v Spurs at least please!