Martin Jol says Marcello Trotta may still have a future at Fulham and has challenged the striker to prove himself while on loan at Brentford.
The 20-year-old Italian recently returned to Griffin Park, having scored nine goals in 29 appearances while on loan with Uwe Rosler’s side last term.
That spell ended in controversial circumstances, however, as Trotta’s injury-time penalty miss against Doncaster on the final day of the regular season cost Brentford promotion to the Championship.
Whites boss Jol said: “For a player like Trotta it’s not easy to break into the first team at Fulham.
“He scored nine or 10 goals but in a lower league at Brentford, which is good.
“Hopefully for him he can score more goals there now and step up a gear, and then maybe he can play for Fulham in the next couple of years.”
Trotta infamously brushed Brentford’s long-serving captain and regular penalty taker Kevin O’Connor aside and insisted on taking the all-important spot-kick.
He fired against the bar, Doncaster broke down the other end of the pitch and scored, and Brentford subsequently lost in the League One play-off final.
Bees fans have therefore been divided over Trotta’s return.
But Jol said: “I think Brentford fans should be very happy to get a player like Trotta back – he is a goal machine.
“I wouldn’t say he is the finished article yet because he’s not, otherwise he would be here, but he gets around the box and can score goals.
“The staff at Brentford are very happy he’s over there and of course his decision is brave. He has the right mentality, otherwise he wouldn’t go there.
“He would probably have gone to another club because there were more options for him.”