Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert feels Fulham's change of head coach could hand them an advantage when the sides meet on Sunday.
Rene Meulensteen took charge of his first Fulham game on Wednesday following the dismissal of Dutch compatriot Martin Jol earlier this month.
While his maiden outing at Craven Cottage ended in a 2-1 reversal against Tottenham, there were signs of promise in the performance and Lambert believes Meulensteen's installation could hand the hosts a boost.
"It's the great old thing - everybody thinks it was the manager's fault but you can only go with that for so long," he told Villa's official website.
"The same group of players can sometimes go on a run and why couldn't they have done that three or four weeks earlier?
"That's the question I think people ask. But it seems to happen a lot throughout football - a new manager comes in with a different way of playing and you get that little kick from the reaction."
Fulham have lost their last six Premier League games while Villa have not tasted defeat in their last five top flight away fixtures.
Lambert hailed the attitude of his side after beating Southampton 3-2 at St Mary's Stadium.
"I take great enjoyment in seeing the lads do it as I see how hard they work and I know what they give us," he added.
"We try and get players that want to succeed and are hungry to succeed.
"I don't think you can have a footballer who just comes here to saunter along and pick up money and not really have that desire to go and be a successful footballer."
|Coach: R. Meulensteen|
for G. Karagounis 73'
for A. Kačaniklić 77'
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