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Sean Davis singles out Fulham star Kevin McDonald as vital in promotion push

Kevin McDonald of Fulham reacts during the Sky Bet Championship Play Off Second Leg match between Reading and Fulham at Madejski Stadium on May 16, 2017 in Reading, England.

Sean Davis is a fan of Fulham midfielder Kevin McDonald.

Frank Lampard of Chelsea is pursued by Sean Davis of Fulham during the FA Barclaycard Premiership match between Chelsea and Fulham at Stamford Bridge on March 20, 2004 in London.

Former fans favourite Sean Davis believes Fulham’s Kevin McDonald is an underrated midfielder and is vital to the club’s promotion chances this season, he wrote in his column for the club’s official website.

The Cottagers have been in astonishing form of late, winning ten of their last 12 Championship fixtures.

Slavisa Jokanovic’s men have climbed the league table and now found themselves in contention for the second automatic promotion spot alongside Cardiff City and Steve Bruce’s Aston Villa.

The likes of Ryan Sessegnon, Tom Cairney and new loan signing Aleksandar Mitrovic have all received their fair share of plaudits over the past two months, but Davis believes holding midfielder McDonald is key to Fulham’s recent success.

Kevin McDonald of Fulham and John Swift of Reading battle for the ball during the Sky Bet Championship Play Off Second Leg match between Reading and Fulham at Madejski Stadium on May 16,...

“He’s one of those players that keeps the team together. His position in the starting XI is vital, he’s a leader on the pitch, he covers a lot of ground, tactically he’s very, very good, and he moves the ball very well,” Davis wrote for Fulhamfc.com.

“He gives that protection to the back four as well, so I’m not surprised one bit that Alex McLeish [Scotland boss] wants him in his squad.”

McDonald joined Fulham from Wolverhampton Wanderers in the summer of 2016 and he has gone on to feature in over 70 Championship games for the club, becoming a vital player in Jokanovic’s system.

Tomas Kalas of Fulham, Kevin McDonald of Fulham and Stefan Johansen of Fulham are dejected after Reading score during the Sky Bet Championship Play Off Second Leg match between Reading and...

The uncapped Scottish midfielder will sit in-front of the back four, allowing the likes of Stefan Johansen and Cairney to push further forward and link up with Newcastle United loanee Mitrovic.

In such a system, there is extra emphasis on the holding midfielder to remain tactically astute and McDonald’s job is not only to break up play, but also to provide the link from defence to midfield in possession.

With no other natural holding midfielder in Fulham’s squad, the 29-year-old is arguably the club’s key player and right now he is irreplaceable in their bid for promotion to the Premier League.

Fulham's manager Slavisa Jokanovic listens to questions from the press during the post match press conference during the Sky Bet Championship match between Hull City and Fulham at KCOM...

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