Writer: Ollie Sheehan
Date:Friday February 10 2006
Fulham will be going for the win against West Brom in tomorrow's 3 o'clock kick-off. Fulham were unlucky last weekend against Manchester United, and will want to make amends with his side's confidence sky high at Craven Cottage.
'West Brom are just three points behind us, they've only won one away game but I'm sure that this is one that Bryan Robson will think they can get something from. Sometimes when you have clubs quite close, sometimes the physical element comes in.
'Last week we played Manchester United and there was only seven fouls in the second half. That's us away from home, trying to play and trying to get back into the game.
'With West Brom it is a case of both clubs looking at the fixture list and thinking that either side could get something from this.
'We have got honest players in our side and we don't have any malicious players. We have to keep it calm at times, with players like Boa his natural enthusiasm means that he will go for everything 100%, he wouldn't go over the ball but he will challenge for everything.
'Our home form suggests that we have never been dragged into situations that have cost us. We will once again emphasise to the players that it is important not to get involved with any silly challenges that could affect how we play.'
'Of course there is much more pressure because we have the worst away form in all divisions let alone just the Premiership, so I think that has definitely added to the pressure of the home games, but this fixture is a home game so we will be going into it with a lot of confidence. Our stats at home are very good and the results we have got speak for themselves. West Brom will be looking to put their mark on the game early, but we just have to stick to our plan.'
Chris Coleman will look to welcome Moritz Volz back into the side against the Baggies. Volz last played in early December before suffering a punctured lung that has kept him out ever since. he will replace the suspended Liam Rosenior who has looked impressive recently. Coleman also has worries over Michael Brown who strained his hamstring against Manchester United and Simon Elliot whilst papa Bouba Diop is still to return from African nations Cup duty with senegal. But Sylvain Legwinski is back in contention.
Vital predicted line-up:
Niemi, Bridge, Volz, Knight, Bocanegra, Boa Morte, Malbranque, Elliot, Legwinski, McBride, Helguson
Has been a commanding and influential player for the Cottagers all season and will look to continue his good recent form driving the team forwards.
Baggies manager Bryan Robson will be without the suspended Paul Robinson and injured duo Zoltan gera and Thomas Gaardsoe. Steve Watson is struggling to be fit with a groin injury whilst Nw**kwo Kanu and Diomansy Kamara are still to return from African Nations Cup duty.
Vital predicted line-up:
Kuszczak, Clement, Albrechtsen, Watson, Martinez, Quashie, Greening, Carter, Wallwork, Horsfield, Ellington
Nathan Ellington is West Brom's leading scorer this season with six league goals. He is a dangerous presence up front for them so Fulham will have to be on their guard.
Fulham last played West Brom at the beginning of December but could only muster a 0-0 draw from the game at the Hawthorns. Chris Coleman will not underestimate West Brom though. The last time the baggies came to Craven Cottage they left with a 3-2 win, albeit in the Carling Cup.
Fulham have gained 26 of their 29 points at home this season and won 7 of their last 8 league games at Craven Cottage whilst scoring 19 goals at home.
West Brom have only managed to pick up seven points on the road this season. Fulham will take comfort from the fact they have managed just four goals from 12 games away from the Hawthorns in the league.
These are two sides separated by only three points in the league and both fighting to stay well away from the relegation scrap below them. But Fulham have more firepower and will look to win this one on the back of an unfortunate defeat at Old Trafford last weekend. Vital prediction: Fulham 2 - 1 West Brom
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Date:Friday February 10 2006
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