Writer: Andrew Joyce
Date:Friday September 28 2007
Stamford Bridge (of sighs)
Do you realise that Fulham have not won a London derby in the last nine attempts?
Do you also realise that Chelsea have not lost a London derby in the last nine attempts?
Don`t you think that it`s about time that was changed?
Could Fulham be the team to further dent the confidence of a club that looks there for the taking?
By this time tomorrow we`ll know the answer won`t we?
After yet another dreadful referee decision cost us a vital game, Sanchez was heard to remark,
"I`m getting fed up with refs who come too little old Fulham and disallow goals for no apparent reason."
Hopefully, we`ll get the rub of the green tomorrow although in all fairness Chelsea are probably saying something similar after rough decisions ruined their fixture at Old Trafford last weekend.
How about we simply settle on it being an incident free game?
Chelsea enter the fixture with the following key players missing - Frank Lampard, Didier Drogba, Ricardo Carvalho and Michael Ballack.
Shaun Wright-Phillips and Michael Essien, who both picked up knocks in midweek, should be fit to play.
Wayne Bridge, a favourite with the Craven Cottage faithful after his loan spell with us is fit again but will probably not get the nod over Ashley Cole.
Mikel is suspended so the African will not feature.
Despite the plethora of injuries, Avram Grant still has a world class squad to pick from as Chelsea select form the following - Cech, Cudicini, Hilario, Belletti, Ferreira, Ben Haim, Terry, Alex, A.Cole, Bridge, Makelele, Sidwell, Essien, Wright-Phillips, J.Cole, Malouda, Shevchenko, Kalou, Sinclair and Pizarro
Have his legs gone as Alan Hansen recently suggested or did Jose Mourinho just not know how to get the best out of him? I just have this feeling the feared striker is going to awake form his slumber one day, please don`t let it be tomorrow.
Fulham make the short journey down the Fulham Raid without knee victims Jimmy Bullard and Brian McBride, both of whom are some way off full fitness.
Lee Cook is another who is likely to be absent as he continues his rehabilitation.
Ian Pearce, who started his career at Chelsea, is another absentee although he`s near to making a comebnack.
Apart from that we believe everyone else has a clean bill of health.
The only difficulties Sanchez faces relate to deciding who to pick form a squad made up of - Niemi, Keller, Warner, Baird, Konchesky, Stefanovic, Bocanegra, Hughes, Davies, Davis, KI-Hyeon, Bouazza, Dempsey, Kamara, Healy
Time for the boo-boys to get off his back and appreciate the work he does.
We`ve never won a Premier League game at Stamford Bridge! The closest we came was last season when an 84th minute goal from Bocanegra gave us a share of the spoils and seriously dented Chelsea`s Premiership hopes!
In fact our record at Stamford Bridge is particularly poor all round, you have to go back to 7th March 1964 for our last top flight win over them.
In fact if you consider their fine record of sixty-six home top flight games without defeat, you`d think we`ve got no chance. However, football can be a funny old game, as we`re always being told.
Besides I`ve always liked the number sixty-seven so could we be about to create a little bit of history?
Martin Atkinson (Yorkshire)
It`ll be a hard fought match, they always are but I have this sneaking suspicion that tomorrow will be our day; we will finally win on the road after that dreadful wait. You just wait and see! 2-1 to Fulham!
Fulham can look ahead to a home fixture against Portsmouth.
Date:Friday September 28 2007
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