Moving to Fulham after their years of over-achievement with Uncle Woy and talking about a top 10 finish might sound far-fetched.
The only way is down, cries commonsense, but operating on similar resources to Blackburn will play to his strengths in the transfer market and effective man-management.
First task, convince Zamora to stay.
Oh what a night: The Cottagers celebrate the famous victory over Juventus last season
Boss's toughest jobWinning over the crowd. Fans seem non-plussed by Sparky's arrival and Roy wonder is some act to follow.
But it was the same with Hodgson, and look how that turned out.
Hiccup on horizonFulham's route to the Europa League final was a once-in-a-lifetime thing.
Trouble is that neither fans, nor owner Mohamed Al Fayed, will enjoy a dose of reality which could come this season. Sound familiar, Mark?
The numbers game1 - Number of goals Fulham have scored in each of their last four openers 46 - Fewest amount of yellow cards picked up in the PL last season
5 - But they gave away joint-highest number of own goals
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Ins/Outs In - Philippe Senderos (Arsenal, free), Jonathan Greening (West Brom, undisclosed)
Out - Chris Smalling (Man Utd, £8m), Elliot Omozusi (L Orient, free), ChristopherBuchtmann (Cologne, undisclosed), Wayne Brown (Bristol Rovers, free), Erik Nevland (Viking, free).
Bright Sparky: Hughes is charged with reaching the heights scaled last season
Keep an eye out forKeanu Marsh-Brown Age: 18 Position: Winger
Can also play at full back. Very right-sided, but this skilful trickster poses a considerable threat.
Fan's view - Josh Day: We dodged a bullet getting Hughes instead of Sven.
Source: Daily Mail