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General Category => Archive => Daily Fulham Stuff => Topic started by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 06:47:15 AM

Title: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 06:47:15 AM
http://www.independent.co.uk/sport/football/transfers/konchesky-loan-is-ruled-out-despite-warnock-deal-2197674.html


Konchesky loan is ruled out despite Warnock deal


By Sam Wallace


Saturday, 29 January 2011

Paul Konchesky's loan move back to Fulham fell through last night despite Aston Villa dropping their demand to Liverpool that they pay a loan fee for his replacement Stephen Warnock.

The Warnock loan deal needed to happen for Liverpool to permit Konchesky to re-join his former club on loan until the end of the season. Villa had originally asked for a £500,000 loan for Warnock that stalled the deal but they dropped that request last night.

Despite Fulham looking at options to loan out Carlos Salcido, the Mexico international who was bought as Konchesky's replacement in the summer, the clubs were unable to come to agreement.

Fulham were the only club Konchesky could move to this month because under Fifa rules no player is permitted to play for more than two clubs in the course of one season. Konchesky played one game for Fulham in August before his £4m move to Liverpool that month.

*West Bromwich have secured the loan signing of Arsenal striker Carlos Vela until the end of the season. The 21-year-old Mexico international has been peripheral at Arsenal this season, making only 13 appearances.

Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 06:50:51 AM

Cottagers boss Mark Hughes has warned Gael Kakuta his enforced absence from Fulham’s line-up tomorrow could continue unless he begins to fulfil his promise.

Kakuta, who joined on loan from Chelsea on Tuesday, is cup-tied for the game with Spurs and Hughes cannot guarantee the 19-year-old with so much potential that he will be a permanent fixture even when he is ­available.

“Gael has real out-and-out pace and ability combined and I think it will help us,” said Hughes. “Whether or not he starts or has an impact from the bench we will wait and see but it makes sense to me with what he can offer that possibly we haven’t got.”



Read more: http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk/news/Irreplaceable-Gareth-Bale-is-not-for-sale-barks-Tottenham-boss-Harry-Redknapp-warning-off-Inter-Milan-s-proposed-40m-summer-bid-article684229.html#ixzz1CP9F8edK (http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk/news/Irreplaceable-Gareth-Bale-is-not-for-sale-barks-Tottenham-boss-Harry-Redknapp-warning-off-Inter-Milan-s-proposed-40m-summer-bid-article684229.html#ixzz1CP9F8edK)
Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 06:52:48 AM

Fulham fighting to keep Gera


Published 18:15 28/01/11


By MirrorFootball

(http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk/match-centre/article649149.ece/ALTERNATES/gallery-large/.jpeg)
 
Fulham manager Mark Hughes has revealed he is desperate to keep unsettled Zoltan Gera at the club.

Blackpool and West Ham are among a string of clubs pursuing the Hungarian forward, who would be happy to leave Fulham during the transfer window because he has failed to nail down a place in the starting line-up.

The 31-year-old's contract expires at the end of the season, but there is an option of a further year based on appearances and Hughes is eager to retain him.

"I've spoken to Zoltan and I don't want him to go. He's a great player. I like him as a player and I like him as a person," he said.

"He's indicated he feels he needs to move. I don't agree with him, I want him to stay.

"I've spoken to him about the option we have about games played and said we would take that forward and exercise that option now anyway because we want him to stay. We need more discussion."



Read more: http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk/news/Transfer-news-Fulham-West-Ham-Blackpool-Zoltan-Gera-willing-to-move-for-regular-football-Hughes-wants-to-keep-him-article684203.html#ixzz1CP9Zb3xz (http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk/news/Transfer-news-Fulham-West-Ham-Blackpool-Zoltan-Gera-willing-to-move-for-regular-football-Hughes-wants-to-keep-him-article684203.html#ixzz1CP9Zb3xz)
Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 07:02:47 AM

Fulham face Spurs without cup-tied Kakuta

Published 14:38 28/01/11


By MirrorFootball

(http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk/match-centre/article649197.ece/ALTERNATES/gallery-large/.jpeg)
 
Fulham boss Mark Hughes cannot give loan signing Gael Kakuta his debut in Sunday's FA Cup fourth round tie against Tottenham, because the Chelsea forward is cup-tied.

New signing Steve Sidwell is available to play his second match for the Cottagers following his arrival from Aston Villa.

Bobby Zamora (leg), Philippe Senderos (Achilles) and Matthew Briggs (calf) are injured, while Mark Schwarzer will not return from Asian Cup duty with Australia in time.

Provisional squad: Stockdale, Pantsil, Hangeland, Hughes, Baird, Davies, Riise, Murphy, Sidwell, Etuhu, Duff, Dempsey, E Johnson, Kamara, Gera, Dembele, Etheridge, Salcido, Greening, A Johnson, Halliche.



Read more: http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk/news/Fulham-Tottenham-team-news-Loan-signing-Kakuta-cup-tied-Zamora-Senderos-Briggs-still-injured-article684031.html#ixzz1CPC2AS17 (http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk/news/Fulham-Tottenham-team-news-Loan-signing-Kakuta-cup-tied-Zamora-Senderos-Briggs-still-injured-article684031.html#ixzz1CPC2AS17)
Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 07:04:14 AM

Fulham deny interest in Spurs' Kranjcar


Published 14:28 28/01/11


By MirrorFootball

(http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk/match-centre/article541569.ece/ALTERNATES/gallery-large/.jpeg)
 
Mark Hughes has denied Fulham are hoping to recruit Tottenham midfielder Niko Kranjcar.

The Cottagers are reported to have turned their attention to Kranjcar following the collapse of their attempt to sign Manchester City winger Shaun Wright-Phillips

Kranjcar is being pursued by a number of clubs in the transfer window, but Hughes insists the Cottagers are not among them.

"We're not interested in Niko. We've got a lot of midfield players and he's not a priority for us," he said.

"We've expressed an interest in Shaun. It's slowed and I'm not too hopeful.

"We tried to make it happen but for a number of reasons it seems to be less likely as the window closes."

Hughes also stated that Paul Konchesky is unlikely to return to Craven Cottage this month after joining Liverpool last summer.

"There was interest and discussion was mooted, but that's not likely to progress in this window," he said.

"It's something we may revisit but it won't happen this month."

More to follow...



Read more: http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk/news/Transfer-news-Fulham-deny-interest-Kranjcar-Tottenham-not-hopeful-of-signing-Wright-Phillips-Konchesky-article684027.html#ixzz1CPCNraGk (http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk/news/Transfer-news-Fulham-deny-interest-Kranjcar-Tottenham-not-hopeful-of-signing-Wright-Phillips-Konchesky-article684027.html#ixzz1CPCNraGk)
Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 07:05:30 AM

SWP and Given won't leave City this month, insists Mancini


Published 14:13 28/01/11


By David Anderson

(http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk/match-centre/article584125.ece/ALTERNATES/gallery-large/.jpeg)
 
Roberto Mancini claims Shaun Wright-Phillips and Shay Given will not be leaving Manchester City this month.

But the City boss is prepared to let Michael Johnson go out on loan as the midfielder tries to rebuild his career.

Fulham and Bolton want Wright-Phillips, but neither are prepared to pay his £65,000-a-week wages and agree to City's demand to make his loan switch permanent in the summer.

Mancini is reluctant to let Wright-Phillips leave before the transfer window closes on Monday because Adam Johnson has suffered an ankle injury in training.

The Italian is also unwilling to let Given go and wants him to stay and provide competition for the erratic Joe Hart.

"Maybe Michael Johnson will leave because I think he needs to play," said Mancini. "Shaun Wright-Phillips? I don't know at this moment because if we lost another player, we would need to bring him in. It is impossible we can play with 19 to 20 players for the next four months.

"Shaun is an important player. I want to keep him here, but he is like Emmanuel Adebayor, he has lost his confidence because he hasn't played many games.

"Shay will stay. In three days, the window closes and it is impossible to find another goalkeeper like Shay."



Read more: http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk/news/Manchester-City-transfer-news-Shaun-Wright-Phillips-and-Shay-Given-won-t-leave-City-this-month-insists-Roberto-Mancini-article683995.html#ixzz1CPCkIzhN (http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk/news/Manchester-City-transfer-news-Shaun-Wright-Phillips-and-Shay-Given-won-t-leave-City-this-month-insists-Roberto-Mancini-article683995.html#ixzz1CPCkIzhN)
Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 07:07:04 AM

Back injury keeps Bale out of cup clash

Published 13:14 28/01/11


By MirrorFootball

(http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk/match-centre/article665295.ece/ALTERNATES/gallery-large/.jpeg)
 
Gareth Bale is out of Tottenham's FA Cup match at Fulham on Sunday with a back injury.

Bale came off 10 minutes into Spurs' draw at Newcastle last week with a back spasm, but Harry Redknapp insists the problem is not serious and expects the Wales winger to return to action in 10 days' time.

Benoit Assou-Ekotto (knee), Heurelho Gomes (shoulder), Wilson Palacios (knee) should return after missing the game at St James' Park, but Ledley King, Jonathan Woodgate (both groin) and Tom Huddlestone (ankle) remain sidelined.

Provisional squad: Gomes, Pletikosa, Cudicini, Hutton, Corluka, Dawson, Kaboul, Gallas, Bassong, Assou-Ekotto, Khumalo, Sandro, Palacios, Jenas, Lennon, Modric, Dos Santos, Van der Vaart, Crouch, Pavlyuchenko, Keane, Defoe, Pienaar.



Read more: http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk/news/Fulham-Tottenham-team-news-Bale-back-injury-out-another-10-days-but-Assou-Ekotto-Gomes-Palacios-should-return-article683965.html#ixzz1CPD4D4z9 (http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk/news/Fulham-Tottenham-team-news-Bale-back-injury-out-another-10-days-but-Assou-Ekotto-Gomes-Palacios-should-return-article683965.html#ixzz1CPD4D4z9)
Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 07:14:17 AM

Liverpool should warmly applaud Fulham fans for their Wednesday night rendition of (to the tune of The Banana Splits) "Roy, Roy, Roy - Roy, Roy, Roy, Roy - Roy, Roy, Roy, Roy, Roy, Roy, Roy, Roy."

No-one can now say that Hodgson was the first Liverpool manager since Bill Shankly to not have his name sung at Anfield.



Read more: http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk/opinion/columnists/brian-reade/Brian-Reade-column-Why-Blackpool-boss-Ian-Holloway-is-acting-like-a-used-car-salesman-over-Charlie-Adam-s-transfer-plus-why-Liverpool-fans-should-be-thanking-their-Fulham-counterparts-for-Roy-Hodgson-chants-article684133.html#ixzz1CPEzmEqi (http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk/opinion/columnists/brian-reade/Brian-Reade-column-Why-Blackpool-boss-Ian-Holloway-is-acting-like-a-used-car-salesman-over-Charlie-Adam-s-transfer-plus-why-Liverpool-fans-should-be-thanking-their-Fulham-counterparts-for-Roy-Hodgson-chants-article684133.html#ixzz1CPEzmEqi)
Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 07:21:07 AM
Forget West Ham affair, Steve Sidwell now feels loved
David Smith


28 Jan 2011

(http://i.thisislondon.co.uk/i/pix/2011/01/sidwell415.jpg)


EXCLUSIVE

Steve Sidwell is honest and straight-talking so admits his immediate reaction was one of "disappointment" when Karren Brady suddenly vetoed his move to West Ham this month.

"There is no denying that if it could have happened I would have been happy," said the midfielder. "There is no getting away from the fact that West Ham are a big club and they try to play the right football."

So does the 28-year-old regard his subsequent deal to join Fulham from Aston Villa until the end of the season, when a three-year contract will be up for discussion, as a consolation prize? Not a bit of it.

Ahead of Sunday's FA Cup derby against Tottenham when he is set to make a second start in a white shirt following a solid full debut at Liverpool in midweek, Sidwell insisted: "It's fantastic, the way it's worked out.

"This is about coming to a club where faith has been shown to me by the chairman and the manager who said, 'We welcome you with open arms, come to us and express yourself'."

That offer from Mohamed Fayed and Mark Hughes has been eagerly accepted by a player seeking to re-launch a chequered career which began with great promise at Arsenal, gained substance at Reading but then stalled at Chelsea and Villa.

Hughes moved for Sidwell in the wake of West Ham's rejection, which attained the status of debacle when Hammers vice-chair Brady used her column in a newspaper to announce that, since her club already had "13 midfielders", Sidwell could not be guaranteed first-team football.

To the chagrin of Avram Grant, the under-pressure Hammers boss who had worked with Sidwell at Chelsea, Brady wrote: "I had to tell Steve that for various reasons - none his fault - we had changed our mind about signing him on loan."

Sidwell doesn't remember it happening quite like that. "She didn't call me," he said. "She didn't speak to me directly. She spoke to my advisors. Now I'm just getting my head down and trying to get myself back on track."

On signing Sidwell, Hughes maintained the former England Under-21 midfielder would be "hungry" following his frustrations at Chelsea and Villa.
The player himself goes even further: "I'm very hungry. The last few seasons it's been up and down. It's time for me now to get back on the map and start showing people what I was like a few years back."

Sidwell, born in Wandsworth, was one of Arsenal's budding stars who won the FA Youth Cup in 2000 and 2001. But with players such as Patrick Vieira, Emmanuel Petit and Gilberto Silva available to Arsene Wenger, he never made the first team and in 2003 accepted an offer to join Reading.

Sidwell came into his own with the Championship side, making a vital contribution to a successful promotion campaign. After that, it was inevitable that bigger clubs would come calling and in 2007 Sidwell joined Jose Mourinho's Chelsea, although the nature of his Bosman move drew criticism.

He recalled: "A lot of people said it was for financial gain but it wasn't that at all. I was 24 and when a club like Chelsea comes in for you, you don't turn them down. The year I had with Chelsea was fantastic. I learned so much on and off the pitch."

However, having stated upon his arrival at Stamford Bridge that he was not there "to make up the numbers", Sidwell found he was in danger of doing just that and in the summer of 2008 he joined Villa for a reported £5million.

"It was a really funny time at Villa," he said. "I caught an injury in my first game and I was out for six weeks and it was always stop-start that first year. I had more injuries in the second year, then James Milner went into the middle, did exceptionally well, and it was hard for me to get back in the team."

Sidwell nearly went to Wolves when the West Ham deal fell through. However, Hughes' intervention, allied with the knowledge he would no longer face a regular commute to the midlands from the family home in Surrey, made joining Fulham a no-brainer.

Wolves boss Mick McCarthy created headlines when he voiced frustration over losing one of his principal transfer window targets but Sidwell said: "The thing with me is, I'm straight-down-the-line and honest. I had to say this was the move for me, not just geography-wise but football-wise as well. McCarthy fully understood that."

Sidwell faces a tough task claiming a regular place in Fulham's starting line-up. The established midfield pairing of Danny Murphy and Dickson Etuhu was performing well until Etuhu strained a hamstring against Stoke last Saturday and Sidwell acknowledged: "My eyes have been opened as to how good the players are here."

With Etuhu sidelined opportunity has come knocking, so what is Sidwell bringing to Fulham's game? He replied: "I'm a box-to-box midfielder, who can do the dirty work on the edge of his own box, getting tackles in, winning headers, then getting up the pitch to help the attack. It's worked for me so far in my career and I've not lost it. I just need the opportunity to show it."

Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 07:23:48 AM

http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/2011/jan/28/squad-sheets-fulham-tottenham-hotspur?INTCMP=SRCH


Squad sheets: Fulham v Tottenham Hotspur



guardian.co.uk, Friday 28 January 2011 20.35 GMT


This London derby should keep the punters warm as Tottenham, despite their involvement in the Champions League and title race, arrive at Craven Cottage knowing that supporters will demand victory over their rivals. Fulham's loss to Liverpool in midweek is of more concern to Mark Hughes than the FA Cup as he plots an escape from relegation. But he, and Harry Redknapp, will still require a win that would provide vital confidence for the return to the weekly grind of the Premier League. Jamie Jackson

Venue Craven Cottage, Sunday 4.30pm

Ref P Dowd

Odds Fulham 11-5 Tottenham 25-16 Draw 5-2


(http://static.guim.co.uk/sys-images/Football/Pix/pictures/2011/1/28/1296236920361/Fullham-001.jpg)
 Probable starters in bold, contenders in light. Photograph: Graphic Head to head Fulham 11 Tottenham 37 Draws 26

Fulham
Subs from

Etheridge, Halliche, Salcido, Greening, Riise, Sidwell, E Johnson, Kamara, Gera, A Johnson

Doubtful None

Cup-tied Kakuta

Tottenham
Subs from

Gomes, Cudicini, Hutton, Kaboul, Bassong, Khumalo, Sandro, Palacios, Kranjcar, Keane, Pavlyuchenko

Doubtful

Gomes, Palacios

Match pointer

Tottenham and Fulham have been drawn together in the FA Cup a total of five times with Spurs getting through all five, although they have twice required a replay.
Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 07:27:39 AM

http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/blog/2011/jan/28/southampton-alex-oxlade-chamberlain?INTCMP=SRCH

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is another Southampton academy success story

The Saints may be in League One but as Manchester United come to town their academy is the envy of Premier League clubs

 
Comments (36)

(http://static.guim.co.uk/sys-images/Football/Pix/pictures/2011/1/28/1296232578417/Alex-Oxlade-Chamberlain-007.jpg)
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain could be the latest graduate from Southampton's academy to move to a top club. Photograph: Nigel French/Empics Sport
 
Those at Southampton know the drill well enough by now. A youngster they have developed over a prolonged period breaks into the first team and duly thrives, blazing a trail through the division to ensure that a trickle of scouts becomes a flood at St Mary's. The rumoured interest from the elite is eventually formalised with those at the very top offering considerable sums to accompany pledges that the player's "development will be furthered" at the higher level.

For Theo Walcott and Gareth Bale, read Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain. The 17-year-old midfielder will confront one of his high-profile suitors tomorrow afternoon when Manchester United visit the south coast in the fourth round of the FA Cup. Arsenal and Liverpool will perhaps be unnerved, given that Sir Alex Ferguson will be able to state the case for a move to Old Trafford, in person and so close to the transfer deadline.

Southampton have publicly pledged to retain a player with whom they first worked when he was seven. "We're not trying to sell Alex," said the manager, Nigel Adkins. But when it comes to promoting their burgeoning talent the League One club's youth development programme is simply too good for its own good. At some stage, whether before Monday's cut-off or not, another bright young thing will fly the nest.

The sale of Oxlade-Chamberlain, like those of others who have moved on in recent times, will leave some supporters frustrated, the club's coffers replenished and a sense of pride burning among the academy coaching staff. United may have had their golden generation and Arsenal a number of impressive graduates in recent seasons, but Southampton are a phenomenon when it comes to youth-team scouting and development outside the top flight. They have always had the mindset to justify that reputation, from the days when Jason Dodd, Francis Benali, Matthew Le Tissier, Jeff Kenna, the Wallace brothers and Wayne Bridge came through to the time at their centre of excellence in distant Gateshead when Alan Shearer first caught the eye.

The crop of players that have sprung from Southampton's modern-day academy might have sustained the club had the seniors not slipped out of the Premier League, but the Saints' approach still offers a blueprint that other clubs of their size should surely follow. A squad's worth of graduates from the Staplewood academy are flourishing in the top two divisions while Southampton attempt to earn promotion from the third. Their under-18s, bolstered by over-age players, are second in Group A of the Premier Academy League, ahead of Arsenal and 11 points clear of Chelsea. This suggests that another wave of talent is about to break.

Last April, Les Reed, who was previously the technical director at the Football Association, was recruited to head the revamped football development and support centre at Southampton and he has restructured and tweaked the set-up. The club's chairman, Nicolas Cortese, says "the strong foundation" provided by the youth set-up will be key to the club's return to the Premier League.

Saints fans may wince to acknowledge it, but much of the academy's success can be put down to Rupert Lowe's first spell as chairman. The philosophy that was put in place in the late 1990s was European in concept and owed much to Lowe's admiration for everything Arsène Wenger was achieving at Arsenal.

"There's an anti-Lowe lobby out there, but Rupert created this dynasty of players," says Malcolm Elias, who was lured by Lowe from Swansea to take charge of youth recruitment, alongside the academy manager, Huw Jennings. The pair now work in the same capacity for Fulham. "His big thing was 'developing our own'. He put in the infrastructure, updated the training ground, and should be hailed rather than chastised for what he did.

"We had a strategy – a no brainer – to develop homegrown players in the academy, people like Adam Lallana, Andrew Surman, Nathan Dyer, and to buy in 14-, 15- and 16-year-olds. Rupert gave us the green light to buy Theo [Walcott] for £1,000 from Swindon, Leon Best and David McGoldrick from Notts County, Mike Williamson from Torquay, Dexter Blackstock from Oxford.

"Kenwyne Jones came over with WWW Connection, a club side in Trinidad, and played our academy side. We won 6-0 with Walcott running riot, but we thought Jones had something. West Ham gave him a trial too, but once people came and saw the coaching and support mechanisms we had in place, it didn't matter who we were competing against, whether it was Arsenal, United or Chelsea. The lads' parents allowed us to do what we thought was right for their sons. They trusted us. Chamberlain would have seen what was happening ahead of him. His father [the former England winger] Mark was a coach there and could see the standards that were being set."

Lowe says: "The model aimed at providing a proper structure to turn out clever players. The first part was to get the best boys in, which we did, hoovering up the best kids out there. Then we went out and hired Georges Prost, a French coach who I had a lot of trouble convincing the board was the right man for the job. A lot of this success can be put down to Georges's attention to detail. Prost, a super man, taught [under-18s] technique. It's not rocket science. If you can't get that through to the players when they're young, you can't make them into players, but the key was always to get the right kids.

"We screened them not for football ability – that is not necessarily the key at that age – but for intelligence and athleticism. You can teach them the rest. If they're not clever and not athletic, you'll find it hard to push water uphill. We spent money on the facilities – an indoor sports hall, a wonderful gym, banks of computers for the lads to use and for us to assess them on – and bought a local hotel, Darwin Lodge, for £250,000, where the boys lodged. We installed Julia Upson to run it, and she was like a mother to them. We made sure their diets and education were right, that their entire lives were stable. By the time I left, Southampton had the whole sweep necessary to produce not only players of quality but players who are also decent people."

There was clever use of the Bath satellite academy – half of Southampton's catchment area is effectively in the sea – to extend the club's ability to recruit at a young age. Bale, spotted at the age of nine when playing for a Cardiff boys' team, Civil Service, in a tournament in Newport, started on the Bath campus before moving to Staplewood, where he was Walcott's room-mate at Darwin Lodge. Training sessions would see the pair confront each other on the flank, while Jones and Best, the scorer of a hat-trick in the Premier League this season with Newcastle, unsettled Matthew Mills (now of Reading) and Martin Cranie (Coventry) in the centre.

"Those individual battles drove the standard up all the time," Elias says. "If the boys weren't at their peak, they were exposed. They drove each other on. I remember us playing Arsenal during their long unbeaten run, back in 2004, and Georges went up to Wenger and said he'd beat him to 50 games unbeaten. He did, too."

The junior sides, overseen by Steve Wigley and Prost, set the standard. When the Frenchman returned to Lyon following a bout of throat cancer in 2007, his five-year spell had seen the Southampton under-19s crowned national champions in 2004 and the under-18s win their league in 2005. More significantly, a swathe of youngsters had made the step up into the professional game.

Southampton's misfortune was an inability to combine the focus placed on the youth set-up with the maintenance of a Premier League side. The youth team reached the FA Youth Cup final in 2005, the year the first team slipped out of the top flight, leaving the club's prized assets vulnerable to the vultures. "You have to pay tribute to Southampton because they had such a good academy but just couldn't take advantage of it," said Wenger. "That FA Youth Cup final couldn't grow as a team and, unfortunately for them, they became big players somewhere else. The fact is that a smaller club can't keep the good players for long enough to take advantage of it."

Yet the club's spiral down the divisions – and consequent financial problems – has not affected their reputation at academy level. The club is now stable and the current owners can trust the foundations that were laid down.

"It's my belief that there are still boys within the system there who have benefited from what was a good environment," Elias says. Players such as James Ward-Prowse, Jake Sinclair and Lloyd Foot could yet follow Walcott, Bale and Oxlade-Chamberlain by drawing the scouts to St Mary's. The ultimate academy continues to bear fruit.
Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 07:35:17 AM

http://www.tottenhamhotspur.com/news/articles/harry-full-out-at-fulham-280111.html


Harry going full out at Fulham



28 January 2011


Harry Redknapp insists he'll field the strongest team possible in Sunday's FA Cup fourth round tie at Fulham.

Benoit Assou-Ekotto, Roman Pavlyuchenko and Heurelho Gomes all come back into the frame after missing last weekend's draw at Newcastle.

The manager was keen to rest players for the third round clash against Charlton at the Lane in January and made nine changes to the team that stepped out at Everton four days earlier.

But that looks unlikely to happen again. "We want to go there and get a result," he said.

"I will field my best available team. Andros Townsend played in the last round but he's now on loan at Watford.

"It's a big game. We want to get through and we'll give it our best shot."

Harry is preparing to meet an improving Fulham side who were four unbeaten before an unfortunate 1-0 loss against Liverpool at Anfield on Wednesday night.

That run included a 6-2 hammering of Peterborough United in round three of the FA Cup.

Harry added: "Fulham are playing well and they were unlucky to lose at Liverpool, they deserved something from that game.

"It will be tough on Sunday. We were a little fortunate to take six points off them this season, to be honest. We had two very tight games and came out in top in both of them, but both were close.

"I've never had an easy game yet at Craven Cottage and Mark (Hughes) has got them playing well."

Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 07:36:24 AM
http://cravencottagenewsround.wordpress.com/2011/01/28/fenestration-talk-now/ (http://cravencottagenewsround.wordpress.com/2011/01/28/fenestration-talk-now/)


Fenestration talk now

Filed under: General — rich @ 12:02 pm

Here at CCN we haven’t got too involved with the whole transfer window nonsense.  Perhaps the recent good performances have dulled our hunger; perhaps the return of various players just make things look a bit better.

Before the window we’d have identified the following needs:

a defender of some sort.  Some wanted a right-back; others left.

a central midfielder.  We’re not short of these, of course, but the idea was to get a better player than the current cadre, ideally someone young enough to succeed the Murph when his legs do finally “go”.

a centre forward.  Because of Zamora’s injury.

What have we got?   Steve Sidwell for one, and in his one and a bit games he’s looked handy.  I’m not convinced yet that he’s doing anything that Jon Greening can’t do, but he does look like he has something about him.

Gael Kakutacould be anything, although I’m inclined to assume that the player he most closely resembles in our side is Moussa Dembele.  Kakuta’s looked phenomenal whenever I’ve seen him play (on Match of the Day), but it’s been so long since we had a young, dynamic flair player that I really can’t picture him in a Fulham shirt.  It could be Wayne Routledge all over again, or Giles Barnes, or something altogether new.   We shall see.  What it isn’t is Shaun Wright Phillips, which is a shame because SWP is a good player and very nippy to boot; we distinctly lack nippiness, AJ’s return to relevance notwithstanding.

And then what?   The centre-forward of our dreams is still not in our car, and it seems increasingly likely that we’ll be back on the phone to Millwall and asking for ‘insurance choice’ Steve Morison (whose Millwall form has gone to pot since the window opened) after all.   He’d be a Kuqi type signing, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing (Kuqi being an interesting example of perception perhaps overtaking reality: for one thing he really never was that fat, and for all his myriad limitations, he made some quite important contributions to a desperately poor side, without which, etc, etc).

Do we still need a centre forward?  Yes, but AJ is better than we could have dared hope, and with Dembele dovetailing nicely behind him I’m less inclined to panic.  Sure we missed chances at Anfield, but that’s what teams do; you can’t score them all.   Perhaps we’d be better off making do and mending, then signing a progressive player in the summer.

At full-back we seem likely to pick the roving left back that is Paul Konchesky.  I have no bone to pick with Konch, who, like his former manager, took a career choice that backfired badly.   We’ve all done it, and it seems ridiculous to suggest that we shouldn’t want him back because he once left us.  This strikes me as the worst kind of unthinking:  if we need a left back and the best available is Paul Konchesky, then certainly we should sign Paul Konchesky.  What are we worried about; that he’ll want to leave us again?   That he won’t be committed because he once dared presume to leave Fulham behind.   Give me strength.

I’m not sure that there’ll be anything else beyond the above, and I’m not sure there needs to be.  With AJ and Dembele fit and well we look a decent side, and the return of Zamora will only improve this.  Sidwell’s a good fit for the middle of the pitch, and Konchesky would certainly be useful while the promising but perhaps disorientated Salcido gets his head on straight.
Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 07:39:44 AM
http://www.spursodyssey.com/1011/prevpackfac4.html

Spurs Odyssey Preview - Fulham v Spurs

FA Cup Fourth Round - 30.01.11 

The following is our record against Fulham in the FA and Football League Cups. The details are:

FA Cup   Round   Venue   Result   Scorer(s)   
1908-09   2   H   1-0   R.Steel   
1983-84   3   A   0-0      
   3R   H   2-0   Archibald, Roberts   
1997-98   3   H   3-1   Clemence, Calderwood + o.g   
2006-07   5   A   4-0   Keane(2), Berbatov(2)   
2010-11   6   A   0-0      
   6R   H   3-1   Bentley, Pavlyuchenko, Gudjohnsen   
   
FL Cup   
1981-82   4   H   1-0   Hazard   
1999-2000   4   A   1-3   Iversen   
2001-2002   4   A   2-1   Rebrov, Davies   

It could be the dreaded draw!

For Spurs, a visit to Craven Cottage in a Cup match is becoming very familiar territory. The two sides first met in the FA Cup in February 1909 at White Hart Lane, in front of 33,008 people. This was Spurs' first season as a Football League side, and both clubs were in Division Two. Spurs beat Fulham at home and away in the League and inside forward Bobby Steel scored the only goal in the FA Cup game. Steel was the younger brother of club captain Danny Steel, who played at centre-half and was ever present for Spurs in their league and FA Cup programme that season. Danny Steel died at the age of just 46 in 1931 at Marylebone, whereas Robert lived to the age of 83, and died at Winchmore Hill in 1972. Spurs were promoted at the end of their first league season.

We then had a gap of 72 years before the two sides faced each other in a first class cup match but since 1981, there have been 7 ties and 9 matches in the FA and League Cup competitions.

This preview will concentrate on the FA Cup and reports of recent matches can be found in the Spurs Odyssey archives as indicated in the Cup history above.

The scoreline of 0-0 is also a regular feature of meetings between Fulham and Spurs, with three such scorelines in the last 7 league and cup meetings. ESPN will be hoping for goals in their featured televised coverage at 4.30 p.m. on Sunday.

Last year, we met in the quarter-final. Fulham came into the match on the back of a 7 game unbeaten run, and despite losing a first leg Europa Cup tie 3-1 away to Juventus would make glorious progress with a 4-1 win on a memorable night at the Cottage. That win came before the replay in the FA Cup at White Hart Lane, and Bobby Zamora gave Spurs fans a nasty shock when he put the away side into a 17th minute lead, with a shot that beat Gomes' right hand.

All would be well for us though, as Harry Redknapp made some half-time switches which included the addition of David Bentley for Kranjcar. Within that first minute, after a foul on Gareth Bale, Bentley floated in a free kick from deep on the left, which beat Mark Schwarzer without a touch from any of the Spurs strikers! Then came a fantastic White Hart Lane moment, as Roman Pavlyuchenko gave Spurs the lead on the hour. Substitute Tom Huddlestone made a good stretch to reach and pass the ball to Bentley on the right. Bentley’s cross went beyond the back post and Pavlyuchenko hit a great shot on the volley which beat Schwarzer on his narrow side, squeezing inside the post. In real time the shot looked like a rocket, but on replay, the ball did bounce in front of Schwarzer, and then rocketed between him and his right post. It was a great goal for the player, team and exuberant fans, as the famous “Wembley” chants rang around the stadium. Our loan striker Eidur Gudjohnssen put the tie beyond doubt in the 66th minute.

Spurs went on to Wembley for an FA Cup semi-final, and Fulham eventually made it all the way to their first European Final. However, both games were lost, so the least said about them, the better!

Under Mark Hughes, Fulham's away form has continued to be quite dismal, although they did manage a win at Stoke on December 28th. Fulham have been too close to the relegation zone for most of the season for comfort, despite being unbeaten in their first 7 league games. Fulham's recent form has improved, with 4 wins in their last 7 games, which is more than they have managed in the rest of the season. Those recent wins do include a 6-2 thrashing of Peterborough in the Third Round. They have also beaten West Brom, and Stoke for a second time last Saturday. Fulham were somewhat unfortunate to lose by a solitary goal at Anfield on Wednesday.

Mark Schwarzer is still away with Australia on Asia Cup duty, where the Aussies face Japan in the Final tomorrow (Saturday). Schwarzer has kept clean sheets in 4 of their 5 games, and will be much missed by Fulham. New signing Steve Sidwell will be available, and played 90 minutes against Liverpool. Sidwell was once the darling of Reading and was signed by Chelsea in 2007, but got very few opportunities. He also failed to make a great impression at Villa. Despite the return to some form of Andy Johnson, Clint Dempsey remains Fulham's danger man, and leads their score chart so far with 8 league goals.

Both clubs have agreed that should a replay be required, it will take place on fifth round day - 19th February. With a midweek league programme next week, and the return of Champions League football on the horizon, Spurs could really do with a win first time round, but it could be tricky. We'll be missing Gareth Bale, whose back trouble means he'll be out for at least another week. Steven Pienaar will be eligible and will play ahead of Benoit Assou-Ekotto who returns after a knee problem. Pavlyuchenko is fit again, and Gomes has returned to training. Palacios and Sandro have been described by Spurs as "doubtful".

Both teams will be well and truly up for this one, and I think the result could be the draw that would be dreaded in some respects, but at least we'd be in the pot for the fifth round draw!

Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 07:42:09 AM

http://www.fanhouse.co.uk/2011/01/28/fulham-v-tottenham-previewfa-cup-mark-hughes-harry-redknapp-niko-kranjcar-gareth-bale/

Fulham v Tottenham Preview: Johnson Form Key to Cottagers' Cup Hopes


28/1/2011 1:46 PM GMT

By Ian Winrow

(http://www.blogcdn.com/www.fanhouse.co.uk/media/2011/01/andrew-johnson-2811.jpg)

FA CUP FOURTH ROUND: CRAVEN COTTAGE, SUNDAY JANUARY 30, 2011. KICK-OFF: 1630 GMT

Fulham have never won the FA Cup and it has been Tottenham, winners of the competition eight times, who have knocked them out twice in the last four years.

Last season they met in the quarter-finals and Spurs emerged victorious after a replay, with goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes performing well in a goalless clash at Craven Cottage.

Harry Redknapp's team are looking to keep pace with the Premier League leaders and are still in the Champions League, but they have a great record in the cup, especially when the year ends in 1.

They have won the trophy five times under those circumstances and are hoping this season will be memorable as well, having reached the semi-finals last season.

Fulham's first priority is to get away from relegation trouble and the signs are good after a recent run of decent results dragged them out of the bottom three and closer to mid-table safety.

But they would also love another cup run, just like last season when they reached the final of the Europa League under Roy Hodgson before losing to Atletico Madrid.

Key Match-up: Andrew Johnson v Michael Dawson: Johnson is expected to lead the Fulham attack which was a problem area for the club during the opening months of the season following a broken leg for Bobby Zamora. They are solid elsewhere and it is in attack where they need a striker to provide a cutting edge. Dawson is the mainstay of Spurs' defence and is their leader in the absence of Ledley King.

Form Guide: Fulham have put together some good results but lost during the week when they travelled to Liverpool. Spurs still have the top four in their sights and secured a last minute draw against Newcastle last time out. Have lost once in 15 games.

Odds: Fulham 2/1, Tottenham 11/8, Draw 9/4

Manager Mark Hughes was encouraged by his side's performance at Anfield and is confident they now have the strength to make a sustained challenge in the cup without jeopardising their league status.

And the manager hopes his side's determination to do well in the competition gives them a slight advantage over a Tottenham side that could be distracted by bigger prizes on offer elsewehere.

"We want to progress in the FA Cup and it's a competition that's close to my heart," said Hughes. "I've had great experiences playing in the competition during my career as a player and manager.

"I want that to continue. We'll try to do the best we can and get as far as we can. Tottenham are a very good side and I'm not sure how high the FA Cup is in Harry Redknapp's list of priorities because he's doing very well on a number of fronts, Champions League included.

"It will be interesting to see what team they go with but our intention is to progress. We're in two competitions and given the quality we have in the squad we can manage to compete on two fronts. I don't see it as a burden."

Hughes has been linked with a move for Tottenham midfielder Niko Kranjcar but the manager denied any interest in the player and is pessimistic about concluding January deals for Manchester City winger Shaun Wright-Phillips and Liverpool's former Fulham full back Paul Konchesky.

"We're not interested in Niko," he said. "We've got a lot of midfield players and he's not a priority for us.

"There was interest and discussion was mooted (about Konchesky), but that's not likely to progress in this window. It's something we may revisit but it won't happen this month.

"We've expressed an interest in Shaun. It's slowed and I'm not too hopeful. We tried to make it happen but for a number of reasons it seems to be less likely as the window closes.

Strategy: Despite the loss of Zamora, Hughes still tends to attack teams with an open game and has been impressed with his side's forward during the recent upturn in results. Johnson offers pace up front while Steve Sidwell's industry in central midfield has made an impact, laying the foundation for better service to the front players.

Injury Update: New loan signing Gael Kakuta is ineligible, while Zamora and Philippe Senderos are sidelined and Dickson Etuhu has been struggling.

TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR:
Harry Redknapp has not played down Tottenham's FA Cup aspirations but with the Champions League set to resume next month and a three point gap opening up between fifth-placed Spurs and Chelsea, who lie fourth, it would be unsurprising if thoughts lay elsewhere.

"People forget where Spurs were two years ago," Redknapp said. "We're involved in three competitions and we want to give it our best shot to go as well as we can in all of them."

The challenge of retaining their place in the top four could be the biggest challenge facing the north London club with Redknapp concerned the club cannot compete with its main rivals in the transfer market.

"We don't pay massive wages," he said. "We have a stadium that holds 36,000 people. The chairman runs the club correctly and we are not in that position to make that extra step to go.

"Top players demand top wages. It's a simple fact and we cannot put ourselves in a position where we pay that kind of money. If we had a 60,000 at White Hart Lane it would be different but we haven't. We can't go that extra yard at the moment.

"We have top players here a great squad but if you start saying getting a top Champions League striker in they cost incredible money. You see today with Fernando Torres. Liverpool won't sell him but you are talking £50 million and mega wages. It is another level."

Gareth Bale is out with a back problem but Redknapp is confident the winger will be fit to face AC Milan next month.

"He won't need an operation. He should be fit in 10 days," Redknapp said. "He'll make the Milan game in the San Siro, all being well."

Strategy: Redknapp favours a lone striker with Rafael van der Vaart playing just behind. It offers stability in midfield but the Dutchman raids forward at every opportunity.

Injury Update: Gomes missed the last game in goal, King, Tom Huddlestone and Jonathan Woodgate are sidelined, while Jamie O'Hara is edging towards a return from a back complaint. Bale misses out with a back problem.
Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 07:43:50 AM

http://www.fifa.com/worldfootball/news/newsid=1372678.html?cid=rssfeed&att= (http://www.fifa.com/worldfootball/news/newsid=1372678.html?cid=rssfeed&att=)



Schwarzer: Title would boost Aussie game(FIFA.com)


Friday 28 January 2011

Long-serving Australia goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer has achieved much in the game over nearly two decades at the highest level, but this weekend promises to be extra special. Nearly 18 years after making his international debut, the dependable custodian will become Australia’s most-capped player overhauling the record of 87 appearances held by former captain Alex Tobin.

Seldom has such a rich reward been on offer as Australia prepare to face Japan in the AFC Asian Cup final, seeking to be crowned continental kings for the first time since joining the Asian Football Confederation in 2006. The match at the Khalifa stadium in Doha may represent the last opportunity for the evergreen 38-year-old shotstopper to collect silverware.

Australia qualified for the final with an impressive defensive record of just one goal conceded in their five matches and the contribution of Schwarzer has been a key component. Ahead of one of the most significant games of his glittering career Schwarzer tells FIFA.com of his experiences at Qatar 2011, what his expectations are for the match and what winning would mean for the game Down Under.

FIFA.com: The last two matches produced amazing wins, albeit for different reasons, 1-0 in extra time against holders Iraq and 6-0 in the semi-final over Uzbekistan. How do these two matches rate in your Socceroo career?

Mark Schwarzer: These are both huge events, being the quarter-final and semi-final of a continental title. Also there is the rivalry between us and Iraq dating back to 2007 [Iraq defeated Australia in a group match in the Asian Cup] and that is something special. To get a win against the current holders was a great satisfaction but also part of the process for us, which is to take each game as it comes.

The team seems to be very cohesive with a strong spirit despite a relatively new coach in Holger Osieck, and also some new faces in the squad. Is that something you have felt?
Without a doubt. We have worked very hard on being switched on and also with what is demanded of us by the coach. We have a very knowledgeable manager who is well-travelled with a lot of experience with players from many different countries. He has slipped into the role very easily. He is very enthusiastic and very energetic and that has been transferred to the players as well.


You have achieved many personal playing records and now you are set to be Australia’s most capped player. What kind of honour is that?
It is a huge honour. It is the icing on the cake. I think it is one of those things that you try not to think too much about. You try and perform and do you job in each match which is the most important aspect. It’s one of those things that you might fully appreciate later on and then it becomes even more enjoyable. But don’t get me wrong I’m fully aware of the honour that goes with it and I’m deeply honoured.

You are taking the mantle of most-capped Socceroo from former captain Alex Tobin whom you played alongside at the start of your career. Did you ever envisage that?
No, not at all. When you are young I don’t think you ever look beyond your next game. In regards Alex, I have the utmost respect for him as a person and a player and he is a great ambassador for the game.

Can you remember much about your debut against Canada in a FIFA World Cup™ qualifier way back in 1993?
I remember most of my games for the Socceroos, if not all of them. It is a long time ago now, but it was a tremendous moment for me.

Do you have any plans regarding your playing future at the moment?
I had a lot of discussions with the manager when he was first appointed and he was adamant that he wanted me to be involved, which I was delighted with. I have no aspirations at this point in time to stop playing and there is no reason to stop playing unless the manager is going to say he wants to look at different prospects. As long as I feel fit enough and am playing well enough to warrant selection, and the manager selects me, then I want to still play.

Australia has a good record against Japan recently. Does that give you extra confidence for the final?
I think it is quite irrelevant because when you are talking about a final it’s a one-off and its all about the 90 minutes, or 120 minutes potentially. It’s all about the day, who deals with the pressure better than the other and that is what it will come down to. Japan are a very good side and they deserve to be in the final. They have some very good individuals and are playing well as a team so it will be very tough for us. We need to play our game and we also have good individuals and have grown as a team throughout the tournament.

Though Australia has won the Oceania crown before, winning this would rank as Australia’s biggest prize, which must be exciting...
Any opportunity to win a major trophy is huge. This is why we have committed ourselves and we were all desperate to be involved in the Asian Cup. We as players first and foremost love representing Australia and we want to do it for Australia and do it for football back in Australia. Of course there is personal ambition and satisfaction but also we ultimately want to do it for the game back home and for future generations.
Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 07:45:07 AM

http://www.footballfancast.com/2011/01/football-news/fa-cup-preview-fulham-spurs-face-off


FA Cup preview: Fulham, Spurs face off


Date: 28th January 2011 at 9:45 pm |

Written by FFC News Desk
 

Fulham welcome cross-town rivals Tottenham to Craven Cottage in the pick of Sunday’s FA Cup fourth-round ties.

Since accounting for Charlton in the third round, Harry Redknapp’s Spurs have drawn twice in the English Premier League – 0-0 with Manchester United and 1-1 with Newcastle – leaving them in fifth position but 13 points behind leaders United.

Fulham, by contrast, are in 15th place but have shown some signs of improvement in recent weeks and they enjoyed a 6-2 rout of Peterborough in the third round, thanks to a hat-trick from French striker Diomansy Kamara.

In Sunday’s other all-Premier League tie, Wolves welcome Tony Pulis’ Stoke side to Molineux as they bid to brighten what has been a disappointing league campaign so far by making the last 16 of the FA Cup.

Stoke will be without suspended defender Ryan Shawcross, who was sent off in their 2-0 loss to Fulham on Saturday.

Fresh from securing a berth in the Carling Cup final with a 3-0 second-leg win over Ipswich at the Emirates on Tuesday, Arsenal will look to begin a run towards a second Wembley appearance when they host a Huddersfield side sitting third in League One.

Manchester City also come up against League One opposition, with Roberto Mancini’s men travelling to Meadow Lane to do battle with Notts County.

And Premier League cellar dwellers West Ham play host to Nottingham Forest, who are in fifth place in the Championship table.

Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 07:46:42 AM

http://www.tribalfootball.com/articles/fulham-boss-hughes-ready-welcome-back-zamora-1415561

Fulham boss Hughes ready to welcome back Zamora


29.01.11 | tribalfootball.com


Fulham boss Mark Hughes is ready to welcome back Bobby Zamora.

Zamora, 30, will start light training next week and should be contesting a first-team place with fellow strikers Andy Johnson, Clint Dempsey, Moussa Dembele and Diomansy Kamara in a month.

Hughes said: "We've got a lot of different threats with the strikers we have."

He added: "We were doing the right things before but just didn't have that cutting edge. We've added that in recent weeks.

"It is not now a case of hoping we win games, it's about expecting to. That's a different mindset."

Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 07:48:36 AM

http://www.dailystar.co.uk/football/view/174140/Mark-Hughes-fires-warning-shot/

MARK HUGHES FIRES WARNING SHOT

29th January 2011 

MARK HUGHES reckons Fulham have finally found the firepower to bring an end to their run of Tottenham hard-luck stories.

And with Bobby Zamora eyeing a return next month, the Cottagers manager is convinced he has the strikers to transform the club’s campaign.

Hughes’ men were left fuming when a controversial offside decision allowed Tom Huddlestone to clinch Spurs’ 2-1 victory at Craven Cottage in October.

And they were gutted to leave White Hart Lane empty-handed this month after outplaying Spurs.

Ahead of tomorrow’s FA Cup clash against Spurs at Craven Cottage, Hughes said: “We were doing the right things before but just didn’t have that cutting edge. We’ve added that in recent weeks.

“We were unlucky in both games against Spurs. Maybe that will give them more fear than us.”
Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 08:12:02 AM
Hughes' Bobby back on beat

By TONY LITTLE

Published: Today


MARK HUGHES reckons Bobby Zamora's return next month will cement Fulham's revival in the closing months of the campaign.

But the Cottagers boss is convinced his side have already found the firepower needed to bring an end to their run of hard-luck stories against Tottenham.

The pressure has lifted on Hughes after a run of four wins in seven games helped draw a line under a nightmare five months.

Victory in tomorrow's FA Cup clash will reinforce the belief Fulham are on the up - and provide payback after two narrow defeats to Harry Redknapp's men.

Hughes said: "We were doing the right things before but just didn't have that cutting edge. We've added that in recent weeks.

"It is not now a case of hoping we win games, it's about expecting to. That's a different mindset."

Zamora, 30, will start light training next week and should be contesting a first-team place with fellow strikers Andy Johnson, Clint Dempsey, Moussa Dembele and Diomansy Kamara in a month.

Hughes added: "We've got a lot of different threats with the strikers we have."

Zoltan Gera, meanwhile, looks certain to quit the club despite Hughes' efforts to convince the Hungarian midfielder to stay.

Hughes, who insists he has no interest in Spurs midfielder Niko Kranjcar, said: "I like him as a player and as a person. He's indicated he feels he needs to move. I don't agree."

The manager is also ready to call time on his efforts to re-sign left-back Paul Konchesky from Liverpool and Manchester City winger Shaun Wright-Phillips.

Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 08:13:32 AM

http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/sport/football/3375735/Middlesbrough-reject-1m-Wigan-bid-for-Leroy-Lita.html


That’s not a lotta lolly for Lita

Published: 28 Jan 2011


 MIDDLESBROUGH have rejected a £1million bid for Leroy Lita from Premier League strugglers Wigan.


Striker Lita, 26, who played in the top flight with Reading, has scored six goals in the Championship so far this season.

Fulham, QPR, Norwich and Burnley are also interested.

Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 08:15:49 AM

"We have brought Rob Milsom in from Fulham, who has looked a great signing for us.

"He has a sweet left foot, is very composed on the ball and he looks a quality player."



Read more: http://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/scotsol/homepage/sport/spl/3375802/I-want-fans-to-remember-me-as-a-Dons-skipper-who-lifted-a-cup.html#ixzz1CPUX92zD (http://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/scotsol/homepage/sport/spl/3375802/I-want-fans-to-remember-me-as-a-Dons-skipper-who-lifted-a-cup.html#ixzz1CPUX92zD)
Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 08:18:46 AM

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-1351536/Carlos-Vela-joins-West-Brom-loan-blow-Bolton.html

West Brom steal march on Bolton with Vela loan deal

By Sportsmail Reporter

Last updated at 1:10 AM on 29th January 2011


Arsenal striker Carlos Vela is heading for West Brom on loan after talks broke down with Bolton.

Vela's agent, Eduardo Hernandez, said his client would move to the Hawthorns for the rest of the season.

Bolton manager Owen Coyle had publicly expressed his wish to sign the Mexico forward, 21, and was given the go-ahead to talk to the player and his agent on Thursday. However, the terms discussed were out of Bolton's reach.

http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2011/01/28/article-1351536-0B343B62000005DC-151_468x323.jpg
 Top Gunner: Carlos Vela will play for West Brom for the rest of the season


Valencia were also keen on Vela, who favoured a move to Spain, but Arsene Wenger wanted the player to gain more experience in the Barclays Premier League.
Albion missed out on Obafemi Martins from Rubin Kazan but are still hopeful of signing Brazilian striker Ewerthon.

(http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2011/01/28/article-1351536-0C933250000005DC-846_306x423.jpg)
 New target: Bolton could now move for Ireland


Bolton will consider reviving interest in Aston Villa's Stephen Ireland after being given potentially bad news on Shaun Wright-Phillips.
The Manchester City winger's hopes of a loan move to Bolton or Fulham disappeared after Adam Johnson suffered an ankle injury in training. Johnson had scans and will see a specialist, but he is expected to be out for at least 10 days.

Wright-Phillips is an obvious replacement on the right flank and, with Michael Johnson set to follow Emmanuel Adebayor and Roque Santa Cruz out on loan, manager Roberto Mancini is reluctant to lose any more players.

If Johnson recovers, City would still consider the deal if Bolton or Fulham agree to pay all Wright-Phillips' wages and set up a £3.8million permanent move in the summer.

But Mancini said: 'Now I think Shaun will stay here. If we lost another player, we need to bring one in. It's impossible we can play with 19-20 players for the next four months.
'He is an important player but he is like Adebayor and has lost his confidence because he hasn't played many games.'
Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 08:23:23 AM

http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk/match-centre/article683213.ece/ALTERNATES/gallery-large/.jpeg


Spurs ready to offer Keane plus £8m for Parker


Published 23:00 28/01/11


By John Cross

Recommend (4)
 
Harry Redknapp has made a dramatic bid for Scott Parker – and is ready to throw Robbie Keane into the £8million deal.

Tottenham boss Redknapp is desperate to bring in long-term target Parker and has left it late to test West Ham’s resolve to keep their midfield kingpin.

And that could mean Spurs finally agree to let Republic of Ireland striker Keane go to West Ham - even if it means on loan.

Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy has refused to entertain West Ham’s bid to sign Keane on loan as he wants a permanent deal to get his £65,000-a-week contract off their wage bill.

West Ham want to take Keane on loan with a view to a permanent deal - so they can opt out of signing him if they get relegated.

But Tottenham may now be prepared to back down on Keane and let him go to Upton Park - as long as they will entertain an offer for Parker.

Tottenham are also willing to throw Jamie O’Hara into the mix but would only want to make up a £2m difference on Parker which leaves the clubs well apart on valuations.

West Ham and Spurs have been frosty well before Redknapp’s failed attempts to get Parker last summer and previously fell out over Craig Bellamy before he went to Manchester City rather than White Hart Lane.

Parker, 30, signed a new five-year deal at Upton Park last summer but it is believed he would be interested in Tottenham as Redknapp looks to strengthen his midfield.

Redknapp would also see Keane’s departure as an opportunity to shake up his strikers and has already made enquiries for Sevilla striker Luis Fabiano, Roma’s Mirko Vucinic and Villarreal’s ex-Manchester United forward Giuseppe Rossi.

West Ham have also strengthened their strike force by signing Demba Ba from Hoffenheim on a four-year contract.

But West Ham have covered themselves on Senegal striker Ba - who failed a medical at Stoke - and there are get-out clauses should they get relegated.



Read more: http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk/news/Transfer-news-Tottenham-make-dramatic-8m-plus-Robbie-Keane-offer-for-West-Ham-s-Scott-Parker-article684233.html#ixzz1CPWJrH1S (http://www.mirrorfootball.co.uk/news/Transfer-news-Tottenham-make-dramatic-8m-plus-Robbie-Keane-offer-for-West-Ham-s-Scott-Parker-article684233.html#ixzz1CPWJrH1S)
Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 09:09:17 AM
http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/fa_cup/9379083.stm



Fulham    v    Tottenham


Live text and stats


Content will update automatically

Sunday, 30 January 2011

The FA Cup

Home Team Score Away Team Time
Fulham v  Tottenham 16:30
 
   
Venue: Craven Cottage Date: Sunday, 30 January Kick-off: 1630 GMT
Coverage: BBC Sport website, BBC Radio 5 live, BBC local radio, Final Score


TEAM NEWS
Loan signing Gael Kakuta is cup-tied for Fulham, but new recruit Steve Sidwell is available for the Cottagers.

Bobby Zamora (leg), Philippe Senderos (Achilles) and Matthew Briggs (calf) are out and Mark Schwarzer is away on Asian Cup duty with Australia.

Tottenham's Gareth Bale is out with back trouble but Benoit Assou-Ekotto, Heurelho Gomes and Wilson Palacios should all return from injury.

Ledley King, Jonathan Woodgate and Tom Huddlestone are all still sidelined.


BIG-MATCH FACTS
The tie in context

• This is one of five all-Premier League clashes in the fourth round, and the only London derby.

Gulf in class

• Tottenham are 10 higher than Fulham in the top-flight table.


Head-to-head
• This is the 75th competitive meeting of these clubs.

• Tottenham have won their last three meetings with Fulham, including a Premier League double over them this season.

Fulham 1-2 Tottenham (Prem Lge, 16 Oct)

Tottenham 1-0 Fulham (Prem Lge, 01 Jan)

• Spurs have not lost in seven meetings with the Cottagers, three of which were goalless draws.

• The Thames-side club last defeated Spurs in November 2008, with a 2-1 Premier League triumph at Craven Cottage.

FA Cup records and best performances

• This is the sixth time these London clubs have been drawn to meet each other in the FA Cup.

• Spurs have progressed on all the previous five occasions. Two required replays, including the most recent in last season's quarter-finals.


The clubs
FULHAM

Current form

• Midweek defeat to Liverpool ended a four-match run of three wins and a draw in all competitions.

• Bidding for a fourth successive home win.

FA Cup form

• The 1975 runners-up have been quarter-finalists in three of the last seven years, including the most recent two.

• Dismissed Peterborough 6-2 in the third round, with a hat-trick from Diomansy Kamara.

• Eager to avoid elimination at the hands of Tottenham for the third time in five years.

• Everton were the last fellow Premier League club they knocked out; fourth round replay, February 2004.

TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR

Current form

• Drawn the last two.

• Lost one of 15 league and cup matches.

• Last won on the road on Boxing Day (at Aston Villa).

FA Cup form

• Last season's appearance in the semi-finals was the best performance in nine years for the eight-times winners, who last lifted the trophy 20 years ago.

• Fulham was the last Premier League club they knocked out in the competition, in last season's last eight.


Replay date
Saturday, 19 February 2011 (Kick off: 1500 GMT)


Match officials
Referee: Phil Dowd (Staffordshire)

Assistant referees: Darren Cann and Adam Watts

Fourth official: Anthony Taylor
Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 09:46:13 AM

http://www.goal.com/en-gb/match/55982/fulham-vs-tottenham/preview


Fulham - Tottenham Hotspur Preview: Assou-Ekotto, Pavlyuchenko and Gomes return as Etuhu remains sidelined


By Alex Young


Fulham

Mark Hughes does not have as delpleted a squad as his Spurs counterpart on Sunday, but he is missing key men. Bobby Zamora has turned the corner in his recovery from a broken leg, but he is not expected to see a glimpse of the pitch until mid-Febuary at the earliest.

The same goes for Philippe Senderos (calf), while goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer is still on international duty with Australia at the Asia Cup. Dickson Etuhu (hamstring) is still expected to miss the game after not making the trip to Liverpool with an injury he picked up against Stoke, so new signing Steve Sidwell should continue to deputise.

Possible starting XI: Stockdale; Pantsil, Hughes, Hangeland, Baird; Dempsey, Murphy, Sidwell, Duff; A Johnson, Dembele.

Tottenham

Currently on the injury table are Gareth Bale (back) and a string of long-term absentees including Ledley King (knee), Jonathan Woodgate (groin), Jamie O’Hara (back) and Tom Huddlestone (ankle), with manager Harry Redknapp confirming that the latter is “still a long way away”.

Sandro (back) and Wilson Palacios (knee) are also doubts, so the only fit defensive-minded midfielder, Jermaine Jenas, will continue to deputise.

On the plus side, Benoit Assou-Ekotto, Roman Pavlyuchenko and Heurelho Gomes are all expected to return after missing the 1-1 draw with Newcastle United, and new signing Steven Pienaar can be included after not making Everton’s squad in the previous round.

Possible starting XI: Gomes; Corluka, Gallas, Dawson, Assou-Ekotto; Lennon, Jenas, Modric, Kranjcar; Van der Vaart; Pavlyuchenko.

Another cup final on the horizon?

Fulham may not have had the best of seasons so far, but signs of improvement are there. On the face of it they currently lie 15th in the Premier League, but it wouldn’t be a underestimation to say that their current league position does not reflect the quality of their squad.

Before the unfortunate 1-0 defeat at the hands of Liverpool in midweek, they had only lost twice in their previous eight games in all competitions and are more than capable of springing a surprise or two at on their home turf on Sunday.

In antithesis to Spurs, the home side will relish an extended run in the FA Cup and, with stuttering league form hampering them last season as well, they will put their full focus on the competition as it will be a fresh change from league life, just like they did with the Europa League last season - and we all know what happened, or nearly happened, with that.

Again though, on paper the omens are not good for Fulham fans. In recent times, Spurs have enjoyed the bragging rights over their London rivals as they have remained unbeaten in their last seven outings, including the league double over them and dumping them out of this very competition at the quarter-final stage last season.

How important is the FA Cup to Spurs?

That is not a question that has even needed to be answered before; usually it’s a categorical ‘very’.

Spurs are a cup team after all. They have won this competition eight times, the third most successful side behind Arsenal (10 wins) and Manchester United (11 wins). They have already proved these cup credentials this season with an impressive debut showing in the Champions League by winning, arguably, the toughest group.

Perhaps this season the FA Cup will be viewed differently though. Spurs have faltered lately in the league with a record of two draws and a loss from their last three games. However, their last league victory came against Sunday’s opponents with a 1-0 win at the beginning of the month.

With this faltering league form putting another season of Champions League football in doubt, and a vital Champions League tie with AC Milan scheduled for mid-February, Redknapp and company could be excused for putting their priorities elsewhere for the time being. But say it quietly, the year ends in a one after all.
Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 09:47:59 AM

http://backpagefootball.com/premier-league/the-cautionary-tale-of-steve-sidwell/

The Cautionary Tale of Steve Sidwell

January 29th, 2011


by James Dixon

(http://backpagefootball.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/01/Sidwell-300x178.jpg)


A young midfielder with a knack for scoring goals that dragged a small unfashionable team into the Premier League for the first time in their history.

A description equally fitting for both Steve Sidwell and Charlie Adam.

Both Sidwell and Adam dropped down to the Championship from bigger clubs (Arsenal and Rangers respectively) and excelled in their smaller ponds, now that it seems Adam is destined to re-enter the “big time” – most likely at Liverpool.

However, Sidwell’s experience moving to Chelsea should be a somewhat cautionary tale for Adam. Sidwell only made 7 league starts and a further 8 substitute appearances for the Kings Road club before moving on to Villa where he only started 24 times in two and a half seasons, and his most telling contribution was as a ball boy for a James Milner goal.

Adam will not be an automatic first choice player at Liverpool. Lucas, Raul Meireles and a certain Steven Gerrard are also vying for central midfield berths. The modern tactical requirements for a holding player like Lucas mean the competition is most likely to be with Liverpool’s best player since Christmas (Meireles) and its favourite son.

Charlie Adam plays exceptionally well week in, week out for Blackpool. Not playing regularly can really affect player’s rhythm and Adam needs to demonstrate he, unlike Sidwell can produce on a more ad hoc basis than he currently is required to do.

Bad luck, also befell Sidwell at Chelsea, the manager who signed him departed. Avram Grant replaced Jose Mourinho and chances were limited for the midfielder.

Although, Dalglish may rate his fellow Scot, Adam – he is not certain to remain in post beyond the summer.

Risk aversion should not ultimately be enough of a reason to not take on a new challenge, players like Tim Cahill have made the step up from Championship to Premiership with relative ease. However, a keen appreciation of all the factors behind their own recent success, especially when it has not been a constant feature of their career might help players avoid making adverse transfer decisions.

Hopefully, Charlie Adam succeeds wherever he ends up and Steve Sidwell replicates his Reading form at Fulham and reaches at least some of the heights that he alluded to whilst at Reading, but sometimes certain players have a moment in time at a club when they are on top of the world, and try as they might they cannot rediscover those halcyon days elsewhere.

Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 01:32:03 PM
Fulham boost as striker Bobby Zamora nears full fitness

By Sportsmail Reporter


Last updated at 12:22 PM on 29th January 2011

(http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2011/01/29/article-1351671-0B80E99D000005DC-170_306x423.jpg)
On the way back: Bobby Zamora ready to face relegation battle


Fulham striker Bobby Zamora will return to first-team training in two weeks with his rehabilitation progressing smoothly.

Zamora could be available to play next month after recovering from the broken leg sustained against Wolves in September.

'Bobby's got a very detailed programme for the next two or three weeks,' said Fulham manager Mark Hughes.
'He will be finishing off with the physios and doing work specific to his position.

'Next week we'll get him involved with warm-ups and the technical things with the senior group.

'Hopefully the week after that he will be in with the group and taking part in training as normal.

'It's a case of building him up and it will be a number of weeks before he can be considered.

'When he is in the group, hopefully he will be two or three weeks away from selection.'
Fulham have suffered in the absence of their England striker, who scored 19 goals in all competitions last season.

Only recently have they started finding the net with any regularity and they host Tottenham in tomorrow's FA Cup fourth-round tie in a far more comfortable position than when the London rivals last met.
On New Year's Day the Cottagers succumbed to a 1-0 defeat at White Hart Lane at a time when Hughes was facing questions over his future.

Two Barclays Premier League wins later and Fulham appear more settled with Hughes even insisting Spurs will approach their showdown with anxiety.

'We've played well in both games against Spurs this season. On January 1 we matched them,' he said. 'For long periods we dictated the pace of the game and possession, had chances to get back on level terms and did really well.

'We are going up against a very good team, a very accomplished side with lots of good individual talent, but we know we can compete.

'We have given a better account of ourselves against Spurs than most teams have.
'Maybe that will give them more apprehension than us.'


Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-1351671/Fulham-boost-striker-Bobby-Zamora-nears-fitness.html#ixzz1CQm1XcIa (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-1351671/Fulham-boost-striker-Bobby-Zamora-nears-fitness.html#ixzz1CQm1XcIa)
Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 01:35:49 PM

Captain Commits

 
Saturday 29th January 2011

(http://www.fulhamfc.com/Images/MainNews/NewsPages/Players/murphy/General1.jpg)


The Club is delighted to can confirm that captain Danny Murphy has signed a contract extension that will see the former England midfielder remain at the Cottage until at least the summer of 2012.

Murphy has been an inspirational leader for Fulham since his arrival at the Club in the summer of 2007, captaining the Team to their most successful ever domestic and European campaigns.

On Saturday Murphy said:

“I’m delighted to have signed a contract extension this morning. As a Club we’ve achieved great things during my time at Fulham so far, not least our highest ever League finish and reaching the Europa League Final, and it is a great source of pride for me, as Club captain, to have played a role in some truly historic moments for Fulham Football Club.

“We’ve made great progress as a Club, on and off the pitch over the past few years, and with the Chairman’s continued support, I believe we’ve got many more great years ahead of us.

“On Sunday we’ve got a massive game against Spurs in the FA Cup and as a Team we will give our all tomorrow afternoon to earn a place in the Fifth Round. I’m sure it’s going to be a great atmosphere at the Cottage and hopefully we can continue our impressive start to 2011.”


Read more: http://www.fulhamfc.com/Club/News/NewsArticles/2011/January/MurphySignsNewDeal.aspx#ixzz1CQmtejWT (http://www.fulhamfc.com/Club/News/NewsArticles/2011/January/MurphySignsNewDeal.aspx#ixzz1CQmtejWT)
Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 01:41:51 PM
http://www.shieldsgazette.com/sport/football/toon_pair_will_be_fit_for_fulham_clash_1_2989048


Toon pair will be fit for Fulham clash

 
Danny Guthrie in action for Newcastle United.


By MILES STARFORTH


Published on Sat Jan 29 12:59:26 GMT 2011



KEVIN Nolan and Danny Guthrie sat out sessions during Newcastle United’s training camp in Portugal.

But midfield pair will be fit for Wednesday night’s visit to Fulham, according to manager Alan Pardew.

Nolan was troubled by an ankle problem during the club’s spell on the Algarve this week, while Guthrie suffered cramp in Newcastle’s last game, the 1-1 draw against Tottenham Hotspur at St James’s Park.

However, Pardew – without the suspended Cheik Tiote, and long-term injury victim Alan Smith – says the pair will be OK for the televised clash at Craven Cottage.

“Danny will be fine for Fulham – he didn’t train, but he’s OK,” said Pardew.

“Kevin had an ankle knock, and also didn’t train, but he’ll fine for Fulham.”

Tiote will serve the last game of his three-match ban for his dismissal in United’s FA Cup defeat at Stevenage.

Smith could be out for the rest of the season with the ankle problem he suffered in the derby away to Sunderland earlier this month.

While injuries remain a concern to Pardew, he’s confident his squad returned to Tyneside on Thursday from Portugal in good shape.

Pardew’s work in recent weeks has been hampered by snow and frozen pitches at the club’s Benton HQ, and the trip allowed his players to train morning and afternoon.

“The weather out there was pretty damp and miserable,” Pardew went on, “but at least we had the chance to get some solid training done on grass, and I caught up with a few of the players.

”We also rested a couple of the lads.

“In terms of fitness and football, it’s looking good, and it was worthwhile to go.”

* Newcastle United’s box office has been relocated to the first floor of the club shop at St James’s Park. It has moved from the south west corner of the stadium.

Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 01:44:18 PM

http://harry-hotspur.com/2011/01/cuptastico/

Cuptastico

Posted on Saturday, 29th January 2011

by Harry Hotspur


Afternoon.

The FA Cup and the League Cup had supposedly become diminished in recent times. This season so far has draw accusations of a drop in quality across the board so hardly surprising that both competitions are suddenly of increased interest.

Spurs travel to Craven Cottage and I have to say it’s a game that doesn’t inspire me. It might help if the damn thing was being televised of course, but the problem won’t be the coverage but Tottenham’s ability to do the right thing and smash Fulham.

Fulham looked like they were in for a boost with Sparky Marky Hughes’ appointment. And that’s as far as the boost went. It was expected but it never happened.

What followed was a conveyor belt of mostly draws and little to cheer about. Since us nicking the 3 points there on the 1st of the month, they’ve beaten West Brom, Peterborough and Stoke. Which doesn’t suggest to me that Hughes has exactly turned the ship around too much.

All eyes on our illustrious strike force and whether Arry opts to hoof it at the Human Draft Excluder or to play football. What is certain is that the chances of us seeing fresh meat in the striker dept are looking bleaker by the day and it wouldn’t harm our lot to mount a Cup run based on one or more of our lot hitting a vein of form.

Prediction: The sleeping beast awakes and crushes all in it’s path 0-3 is 20/1 at Bet356 who will double your deposit up to £200. Bless ‘em.

Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 01:48:12 PM
Kenny Jackett tells in-demand striker Steve Morison: Sign a new deal and stay at Millwall
 
By Sportsmail Reporter


Last updated at 9:56 AM on 29th January 2011


Millwall boss Kenny Jackett hopes to tie star striker Steve Morison to a new contract to ward off the Barclays Premier League vultures.

Wales international Morison grabbed his 13th goal of the season to keep the Lions on course for the npower Championship play-offs.

James Henry drove in a low cross from the right and Morison was on hand to steer the ball inside the far post to put Millwall on their way to a 2-0 victory over Barnsley.

(http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2011/01/29/article-0-0CF44BB5000005DC-362_468x354.jpg)
 On target - again: Millwall's Steve Morison is wanted by two Premier League clubs

The Lions are desperate to hold onto their top scorer, who has been linked with Fulham and Wolves, and Jackett may be tempted to switch his phone off between now and the close of the transfer window on Monday evening.

But a new two-and-a-half-year deal is on the table and Jackett said: 'We've talked to Steve. I don't know at what stage those guys are at but we are in negotiations.

'It was a good finish, he kept it down well on his left foot outside the post. It was an easy one to miss on your wrong foot and it was the vital first goal.'

Henry added a second eight minutes before half-time with a 20-yard drive which took a wicked deflection off Tykes full-back Matthew Hill.

The second half was something of a non-event but Jackett was not complaining after a fourth straight home win which moved his side up to eighth, just three points shy of the top six.

'It was a very good start and a good win after the defeat at Leicester last week,' he added.

'The second half was a bit surreal but we saw it through. We don't want to get too far ahead of ourselves. It's the old adage of taking each game as it comes, and if we are still up there in March then we can start looking in the right direction. You have to look short term in this industry.'

It all added up to a second wasted trip to south London in the space of a month for the 270 hardy Barnsley fans after the original fixture was called off a couple of hours before kick-off.

Their team nearly gave them something to cheer in the 15th minute but Hugo Colace fired over from 12 yards.

Jacob Butterfield could have dragged Barnsley back into the game with 10 minutes remaining, but their chances disappeared along with the midfielder's shot as it flew wide.

'It took us two goals to get going,' said Tykes manager Mark Robins. 'We were lacklustre. You know when you come to The Den about Millwall's energy and that they work hard, but we didn't get to grips with it.

'We were a soft touch, which was disappointed. But it was our third game in six days and it's taken its toll.'


Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-1351641/Kenny-Jackett-tells-demand-striker-Steve-Morison-Sign-new-deal-stay-Millwall.html#ixzz1CQpaidqT (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-1351641/Kenny-Jackett-tells-demand-striker-Steve-Morison-Sign-new-deal-stay-Millwall.html#ixzz1CQpaidqT)
Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 01:49:13 PM

http://www.twtd.co.uk/news.php?storyid=17810

U18s Face Fulham

Sat 29th Jan 2011 10:02

Town’s U18s are in action against Fulham at Playford Road this morning (KO 11am). The young Blues will be looking to get back to winning ways after last week’s 1-0 loss at Arsenal.

Northern Ireland U21 international striker Caolan Lavery remains on the sidelines with the knee injury he suffered in the FA Youth Cup exit to Peterborough in November, while Norwegian central defender Nicolay Schrøder is also still out with his knee problem.

Meanwhile, Town are advertising for a new full-time assistant academy manager.


U18s squad: Cody Cropper, Callum Bennett, Joe Whight, Josh Carson, Josh Meekings, Rory McKeown, Cormac Burke, Elliot Scotcher, Jack Simmons, Byron Lawrence, Carel Tiofack, Jide Maduako, Conor O’Donnell, Lewis Acott, David
 
Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 01:50:48 PM

http://www.espn.co.uk/football/sport/story/70834.html?CMP=OTC-RSS (http://www.espn.co.uk/football/sport/story/70834.html?CMP=OTC-RSS)



Sidwell questions Brady statement
 
ESPN staff


January 29, 2011

(http://www.espn.co.uk/PICTURES/CMS/19900/19984.2.jpg)
Steve Sidwell is looking to make his mark at Fulham © PA Photos


Enlarge Steve Sidwell has taken a swipe at Karren Brady, insisting the West Ham vice-chair did not contact him to inform him the club had pulled out of a deal to sign him from Aston Villa.

Sidwell was earmarked as a prime target for Hammers boss Avram Grant, but the club pulled the plug late in the day with Brady claiming they already had too many midfielders on their books. The decision caused a rift in the West Ham camp, with Grant angry about the way things were handled, but it allowed Fulham to step in with a bid.

The former Chelsea man is now settled in Mark Hughes' squad at Fulham and has no regrets about not securing a move to Upton Park, but countered Brady's account of events.

"I had to tell Steve that for various reasons - none his fault - we had changed our mind about signing him on loan," Brady wrote in her column in The Sun. "This was a filthy task but in the end it was decided that, with 13 midfielders and most of the injured about to return, we couldn't promise him regular first-team football and he'd hardly be in a better position than at Villa Park."

This chain of events did not ring true to Sidwell, who told the Evening Standard: "She didn't call me. She didn't speak to me directly. She spoke to my advisors. Now I'm just getting my head down and trying to get myself back on track.

"There is no denying that if it could have happened I would have been happy. "There is no getting away from the fact that West Ham are a big club and they try to play the right football."

But the move to Fulham has handed Sidwell the chance to revive his career and he is delighted with how things have worked out.

"It's fantastic, the way it's worked out," he said. "This is about coming to a club where faith has been shown to me by the chairman and the manager who said, 'We welcome you with open arms, come to us and express yourself'."

Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 01:53:22 PM

http://www.footylatest.com/mark-hughes-trying-to-stop-blackpool-getting-charlie-adams-replacement/19526

Mark Hughes trying to stop Blackpool getting Charlie Adam’s replacement


The Blackpool manager Ian Holloway has been reported as tracking the Fulham midfielder Zoltan Gera just in case he has to let Charlie Adam leave Bloomfield Road in the end, but the Fulham coach Mark Hughes is trying hard to hold on to the Hungarian international, who is rumoured to have several other clubs interested in signing him. West Ham are also said to be strongly interested in 31-year-old.

Gera has been unable to hold down a regular place in the Fulham side and would be happy to leave the club to try his luck elsewhere, and if the Liverpool boss Kenny Dalglish wins the race to take Charlie Adam to Anfield, Gera would be guaranteed a first team place at Blackpool.

However Hughes is keen to retain the services of Gera and he announced: “I’ve spoken to Zoltan and I don’t want him to go. He’s a great player. I like him as a player and I like him as a person”.

Go to VCBet and take advantage of great odds and a welcome bonus of £25

The player’s contract expires at the end of the season but there is an option of extending it by a year depending on appearances made.

Mark Hughes added: “I’ve spoken to him about the option we have about games played and said we would take that forward and exercise that option now anyway because we want him to stay. We need more discussion”.

Mark Hughes is pretty good at persuading his players to stay if he genuinely believes in them, so perhaps the Fulham boss could be influential in stopping Liverpool from getting Charlie Adam?

Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 01:57:57 PM

http://www.dailyecho.co.uk/sport/5015033.Wembley_ticket_auction_to_help_ex_Saint/


Fundraising auction for Johnstone's Paint Trophy tickets to help Kevin Moore

10:50am Thursday 18th February 2010

Comments(2) More stories about: Kevin Moore

 
By Gordon Simpson

Senior Sports Reporter
 
(http://www.dailyecho.co.uk/resources/images/1183025/?type=display)

FANCY watching the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy final in style, while helping out ex-Saint Kevin Moore?

Well, now you can, through a fundraising auction in aid of the dementia sufferer and former Dell defender.

Fans are being offered the chance to buy a pair of hospitality tickets to the Saints v Carlisle match on Sunday, March 28.

The two ‘Club Diamond Wembley Package’ seats will give the winner and their guest a day to remember.

They include a hot and cold buffet brunch, with complimentary beer, wine or soft drinks from two hours before kick-off.

At half-time, freshly brewed coffee and biscuits will be served.

There will be a post-match selection of afternoon tea, sandwiches, gourmet pies and complimentary beer, wine and soft drinks for one hour after the final whistle.

The winners will also receive a free programme and two tickets within the Bobby Moore seat block at Wembley.

The auction is being run by the same team that have put together April’s golf day in aid of Kevin.

Johnstone’s Paint have donated the tickets to them.

However, because the game takes place before the golf day, they are auctioning them off separately.

As revealed in the Daily Echo this month, 51-year-old Moore is suffering from a rare form of dementia.

He was diagnosed with Pick’s Disease, which is a form of frontotemporal dementia, about two years ago.

Moore lives with his wife, Mandy, in Otterbourne, but requires round-theclock care, visiting the White House, in Curdridge, seven days a week.

The Daily Echo is backing the drive to raise funds for his care.

Moore was the last Saints player to score at Wembley, netting the second in the 3-2 defeat to Nottingham Forest in the 1992 Zenith Data Systems Cup final.

The auction will close at midnight on Monday, March 1.

Bids start at £400 for the pair.

To enter, you must submit a sealed bid, complete with your name, address and contact details. These must be sent to JPT competition, c/o 1 St Simon Close, Locks Heath, Southampton SO31 6DH.

The winner will be contacted by the organisers and also announced in the Daily Echo. Please note, this is not an Echo competition.

For any further information, please email organiser Richard Becheley at richard@bbmltd.com.

Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 06:39:33 PM
http://blogs.soccernet.com/fulham/archives/2011/01/up_for_the_cup.php

Up for the Cup

Posted by Phil Mison 2 hours, 20 minutes ago



Expectations are high ahead of the 4th round Cup clash with Spurs this Sunday, This will be our 8th attempt to down Tottenham in the FA Cup, we've won none of the previous seven.
There's a sobering statistic for starters. Added to the superstition that says Spurs always win the Cup when the year ends in a 1, that they've already nicked 6 points off us this season, and that they ended our dreams of Wembley last seaon in a 5th round replay - how many more reasons do you need to suggest fate is against us?

As a club Fulham do seem to have an Achilles heel in coming up short on the big occasion - defeats in the only two big finals in our history to date, '75 and last May. 2nd best at Villa Park v Chelsea in our one semi final appearance of the last decade, and going back through Cup history we failed four times at the semi-final stage before at last making it to a Wembley Final - in epic fashion - back in 1975.

For followers unaware of this footballing curiosity, Fulham's record of games needed to progress in 1975 can never be topped. In the days before penalty shoot outs Alec Stock's team required 11 games to make that Wembley date with West Ham. I was reminiscing about that campaign earlier this month after a dinner in the Riverside with Les Barrett, John Mitchell, John Lacy, Barry Lloyd and John Fraser from that team.

This nearly but not quite theme has also cast its shadow this season. We've come as close as anyone to beating United, and would have done so had the officials done their job and penalised the assault on Dembele by Vidic. Narrow defeats at Chelsea and Arsenal, Spurs both home and away, then more heartbreak just this week at Anfield, where Torres was made to look ordinary and Liverpool rode their luck.

But, they do say the good teams create their own luck in football, and there's a case for suggesting for some reason Fulham do seem to hit a pyschological barrier when it matters. The exception to this perhaps our European adventures last spring. If Hughes can invoke the spirit of the Europa nights for Spurs, we have every chance of putting out one of the big teams. It goes without saying, Fulham fans would relish getting the better of their London rivals.

'Arry intends to play a strong side. But we know that won't include Bale, and what a bonus that is. With two meetings against Inter Milan and a derby clash with Arsenal coming up next month, I suspect the Spurs camp won't lose too much sleep should they exit the FA Cup here.
Their priorities will be Europe and pushing for league points, while for Mark the FA Cup is all Fulham can now win. On current form there's little between the sides. Let's hope it's Fulham who get the rub of the green and that we for once do ourselves justice on the day.

Rounding out the month, it appears FFC activity in the transfer market is done. Despite the pressing need for more strike power, and the declared intent to acquire it, I see no names on the horizon. That's not to say enquiries haven't been made. At some point down the line we may learn more. On paper we seem to have enough about us squad wise, though its marginal, while injuries and suspensions can derail the best laid plans at any time.

We must salute Mark Schwarzer's record 88th cap for Australia at the Asian Cup. He returns without a winner's medal, but no blame attached for Japan's winner. Well done to Danny for getting another year on his contract. With younger legs around him Murphy still has something to offer a Fulham side firing on all cylinders, though he may not find himself an automatic starter from next season.

The last word this week goes to our friends on the Kop. We know you don't take kindly to being tagged a rather ordinary mid-table side in decline, but even Fernando's heard the drums now and can't wait to become Drogba's successor at Chelsea - where he might stand a realistic chance of winning medals...

COYW - Let's rock da house Sunday and outsing the Spuds!
Twitter@fulhamphil

Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 06:41:30 PM

http://www.twtd.co.uk/news.php?storyid=17812

U18s Defeat Fulham

Sat 29th Jan 2011 17:04

Town's U18s got back to winning ways with a fine 3-2 victory over Fulham at Playford Road on Saturday morning. Josh Meekings (pictured), Cormac Burke and Jack Simmons were on target for the young Blues.

Town started well and Welsh U17 international striker Jack Simmons blazed over early on. The first half was a fairly even affair but it ended on a sour note when Fulham skipper Josh Pritchard had to be stretchered off after he had fouled Byron Lawrence.

The Cottagers came out strongly for the second half and took the lead within two minutes of the restart. Alex Brister curled in a freekick to the back post where centre-half Robert Maloney beat keeper Cody Cropper with a powerful header.

The dangerous Brister came close to doubling Fulham's advantage soon after when his looping header rebounded off the crossbar.

Town started to come back into the match with Northern Ireland U21 international midfielder Josh Carson and Simmons both having powerful efforts which were well saved by Grant Smith in the Fulham goal.

With 20 minutes remaining, Town did score a deserved equaliser when central defender Josh Meekings headed home after being left unmarked from a corner.

Substitute Tommy Winter and right-back Callum Bennett both came close to giving Town the lead from a Joe Whight cross before the Cottagers somewhat fortunately went ahead again on 77.

Youngster Lawrence conceded possession just outside the Town area and Fulham took full advantage with Brister slotting home.

However, the young Blues’ determination paid off with 10 minutes remaining when Winter laid the ball off to midfielder Cormac Burke on the right and the Northern Ireland U19 international hit a sweet low drive into the far corner of the net.

And Town grabbed all three points five minutes later when Simmons scored a poacher’s goal from inside the six-yard box following a corner which wasn't dealt with by the visitors.

Skipper Meekings survived a penalty appeal against him for handball in the dying seconds and Town held on for a well-deserved and hard-fought three points. Meekings, who produced resolute defending throughout, and Simmons, who never stopped causing the Fulham defence problems, were probably the standout performers on a bitterly cold morning.


Town: Cropper, Bennett, Whight, Carson, Meekings, McKeown, Burke, Scotcher (October 67), Simmons, Lawrence and Tiofack (Winter 67). Unused: Maduako, O'Donnell and Acott.

Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 06:43:43 PM

http://mcnamarasband.wordpress.com/2011/01/29/sunday-afternoon-at-the-cottage-fulham-v-tottenham-fa-cup-preview/

Sunday afternoon at the Cottage: Fulham V Tottenham FA Cup preview


Posted on January 29, 2011 by mac

 
With the year ending in 1 all Spurs fans will be hoping for a place in the fifth round of the FA Cup at the first time of asking but a Fulham side who acquitted themselves extremely well at White Hart Lane earlier this month stand before us on their own turf. Therefore a tough challenge but easier than the normal away fixture at Old Trafford in these early rounds.

We are without Gareth Bale whose back injury whilst not requiring surgery needs further rest so having checked whether Pienaar played in Everton’s third round victory (he didn’t) I would expect him to start out left. As we stand Kranjcar is available to take that position but Werder Bremen have made a bid for his services. Despite having hardly played him at all this season Harry appears not to want to lose his services – apparently Niko does not want to play in Germany either.

That poses a problem for Spurs. We have a heavy roster of players and need to clear out as well as adding. Already this month Keane did not leave for Birmingham with a question of increased wages being suggested. Keane denies this and Birmingham’s record in the market allows it to be swept away. Now West Ham are prowling and suggest that “no stone will go unturned” in an effort to sign him. That shouldn’t be a problem as we already hold an open door for him but what of the wage demands? Will personal terms be possible to agree?

With Niko if it’s Germany or the bench the bench appears to be favourite. At least David Bentley wanted to play football when going out on loan.

Last week we were surprised by the Gomes injury and Cudicini stepped in and provided a capable performance. I would expect him to continue for this game as Gomes only returned to training on Friday.

If we are to make changes on the field for this game right back might be one position. Corluka or Hutton? I would expect Hutton but if Charlie was given the nod it would not be a disaster for us. With Ekotto fit to return at left back it allows for Gallas and Dawson to continue with Bassong dropping back to the bench.

Earlier in the month Seb had suggested he might be ready to move on but after a discussion with Harry he is once again committed to the cause. As it stands a decent decision, but with Woodgate nearing fitness things might get tough if he makes the 25 man squad for the second half of the season. If he could play I would rather it was for us – maybe from the bench – than for another Premier League outfit.

Palacios has not yet recovered from his injury so that leaves Jenas or Sandro competing for the shirt. I think Jenas is the man for this game with his longstanding experience and fourth rating for midfield passes this season. Sandro will make the bench and may get a chance of the game is secure.

Lennon and Modric will play their normal roles and Van Der Vaart will support the lead man. Pav is available once more after injury but I expect Defoe to continue with Crouch available from the bench should the change be required.

Without Zamora Fulham are not the same side but Dempsey is a useful player and Andy Johnson caused us problems as an Everton player so we need to be wary. Last time out they contributed to their downfall with a pantomime own goal but we shouldn’t expect them to bear us similar gifts. Therefore a tough test at Craven Cottage that we can win if we play to our potential. If not I expect a draw and return to the Lane as we did last year before Spurs go through to the fifth round.

My side for the game is:

                             Cudicini

     Corluka       Gallas       Dawson       Ekotto

Lennon            Jenas           Modric        Pienaar

          Van Der Vaart          Defoe

Prediction: I’m hopeful of a clean sheet and a goal from Defoe.

Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: White Noise on January 29, 2011, 07:04:09 PM
http://news.smh.com.au/breaking-news-sport/japan-down-socceroos-in-asian-cup-final-20110130-1a9a5.html

Japan down Socceroos in Asian Cup final

Liam Fitzgibbon

 
January 30, 2011 - 4:59AM
 
The Socceroos suffered heartbreak in their bid to lift the Asian Cup for the first time as Japan won Saturday's final 1-0 in extra time in Doha.

Substitute Tadanari Lee struck in the 109th minute to shatter Australia's hopes and give Japan a record fourth Asian Cup title, their third in the past four tournaments.

The Socceroos were gallant in an enthralling contest played in front of 37,174 fans at Khalifa Stadium but it was a single defensive lapse that cost them.

Advertisement: Story continues below Yuto Nagatomo beat off Luke Wilkshire on the left flank and sent in a curling cross and Lee, a 99th minute substitute, was left totally unmarked to smash a well-taken volley past Mark Schwarzer.

It was a cruel blow for an Australian defence which had until that point been brilliant in deflecting Japan's attack, with captain Lucas Neill and Sasa Ognenovski particularly impressive.

The loss revived memories of Australia's first Asian Cup campaign in 2007, when they were dumped out by Japan in the quarter-finals.

It also cruelled a chance for veterans such as Neill, Schwarzer, Tim Cahill, Harry Kewell and Brett Emerton to claim a piece of silverware for a golden age of Australian football that included qualifying for back-to-back World Cups.

The match went to extra time after a scoreless but entertaining 90 minutes in which both sides created several good opportunities.

Australia started brightly with Matt McKay, who kept his place in the starting line-up ahead of Emerton, squandering a chance in only the second minute after some impressive build-up from Tim Cahill, Brett Holman and Carl Valeri.

The Socceroos suffered a scare when Schwarzer fell awkwardly while making a clearance off the goal line but the gloveman, who broke Alex Tobin's caps record in his 88th appearance, played on.

Some brilliant service from Wilkshire and David Carney created a host of chances in the air, with Cahill ever present and Kewell forcing a great reaction save from man-of-the-match Eiji Kawashima in the 19th minute.

Japan kept the ball well to take the sting out of Australia's momentum and also looked the part going forward, with brilliant midfielders Keisuke Honda and Yasushito Endo pulling the strings.

Australia thought they had taken the lead three minutes into the second half when a Wilkshire cross struck the bar and was almost bundled in by Cahill and referee Ravshan Irmatov rightly called play on despite Socceroos claims the ball had crossed the line.

Holger Osieck introduced Emerton in the 65th minute for a tiring Holman and Japan should have taken the lead a minute later with their best chance.

Yuto Nagatomo found Shinji Okazaki with a pin-point cross, but the striker glanced his header agonisingly wide with Schwarzer beaten.

It was then Australia's turn to miss a golden opportunity when Kewell cleverly beat Daiki Iwamasa to get one-on-one with Kawashima but the goalkeeper made a brilliant save with his feet.

The end-to-end action continued in extra time, with Emerton scuffing a good chance in the 103rd minute before Osieck handed Kruse a enormous opportunity off the bench in place of Kewell.

The Melbourne Victory striker almost scored with his first touch, forcing another brilliant save out of Kawashima with an inch-perfect header.

But with the match seemingly heading for penalties, it was Japan who made the breakthrough, breaching Australia's defence for only the second time in the tournament.

Socceroos young and old sank with agony and were visibly devastated when the final whistle blew and the Japanese camp exploded into celebrations.

Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: HatterDon on January 29, 2011, 09:31:10 PM

http://www.twtd.co.uk/news.php?storyid=17812

U18s Defeat Fulham

Sat 29th Jan 2011 17:04

Town's U18s got back to winning ways with a fine 3-2 victory over Fulham at Playford Road on Saturday morning. Josh Meekings (pictured), Cormac Burke and Jack Simmons were on target for the young Blues.

Town started well and Welsh U17 international striker Jack Simmons blazed over early on. The first half was a fairly even affair but it ended on a sour note when Fulham skipper Josh Pritchard had to be stretchered off after he had fouled Byron Lawrence.

The Cottagers came out strongly for the second half and took the lead within two minutes of the restart. Alex Brister curled in a freekick to the back post where centre-half Robert Maloney beat keeper Cody Cropper with a powerful header.

The dangerous Brister came close to doubling Fulham's advantage soon after when his looping header rebounded off the crossbar.

Town started to come back into the match with Northern Ireland U21 international midfielder Josh Carson and Simmons both having powerful efforts which were well saved by Grant Smith in the Fulham goal.

With 20 minutes remaining, Town did score a deserved equaliser when central defender Josh Meekings headed home after being left unmarked from a corner.

Substitute Tommy Winter and right-back Callum Bennett both came close to giving Town the lead from a Joe Whight cross before the Cottagers somewhat fortunately went ahead again on 77.

Youngster Lawrence conceded possession just outside the Town area and Fulham took full advantage with Brister slotting home.

However, the young Blues’ determination paid off with 10 minutes remaining when Winter laid the ball off to midfielder Cormac Burke on the right and the Northern Ireland U19 international hit a sweet low drive into the far corner of the net.

And Town grabbed all three points five minutes later when Simmons scored a poacher’s goal from inside the six-yard box following a corner which wasn't dealt with by the visitors.

Skipper Meekings survived a penalty appeal against him for handball in the dying seconds and Town held on for a well-deserved and hard-fought three points. Meekings, who produced resolute defending throughout, and Simmons, who never stopped causing the Fulham defence problems, were probably the standout performers on a bitterly cold morning.


Town: Cropper, Bennett, Whight, Carson, Meekings, McKeown, Burke, Scotcher (October 67), Simmons, Lawrence and Tiofack (Winter 67). Unused: Maduako, O'Donnell and Acott.



TWO articles in this thread, and I still have no idea who Fulham played.

WHICH TOWN?

Crawley? Luton? Ipswich? Huddersfield? Toon?
Title: Re: Saturday Fulham Stuff (29.01.11)
Post by: Mr Fulham on January 30, 2011, 01:36:51 AM

http://www.twtd.co.uk/news.php?storyid=17812

U18s Defeat Fulham

Sat 29th Jan 2011 17:04

Town's U18s got back to winning ways with a fine 3-2 victory over Fulham at Playford Road on Saturday morning. Josh Meekings (pictured), Cormac Burke and Jack Simmons were on target for the young Blues.

Town started well and Welsh U17 international striker Jack Simmons blazed over early on. The first half was a fairly even affair but it ended on a sour note when Fulham skipper Josh Pritchard had to be stretchered off after he had fouled Byron Lawrence.

The Cottagers came out strongly for the second half and took the lead within two minutes of the restart. Alex Brister curled in a freekick to the back post where centre-half Robert Maloney beat keeper Cody Cropper with a powerful header.

The dangerous Brister came close to doubling Fulham's advantage soon after when his looping header rebounded off the crossbar.

Town started to come back into the match with Northern Ireland U21 international midfielder Josh Carson and Simmons both having powerful efforts which were well saved by Grant Smith in the Fulham goal.

With 20 minutes remaining, Town did score a deserved equaliser when central defender Josh Meekings headed home after being left unmarked from a corner.

Substitute Tommy Winter and right-back Callum Bennett both came close to giving Town the lead from a Joe Whight cross before the Cottagers somewhat fortunately went ahead again on 77.

Youngster Lawrence conceded possession just outside the Town area and Fulham took full advantage with Brister slotting home.

However, the young Blues’ determination paid off with 10 minutes remaining when Winter laid the ball off to midfielder Cormac Burke on the right and the Northern Ireland U19 international hit a sweet low drive into the far corner of the net.

And Town grabbed all three points five minutes later when Simmons scored a poacher’s goal from inside the six-yard box following a corner which wasn't dealt with by the visitors.

Skipper Meekings survived a penalty appeal against him for handball in the dying seconds and Town held on for a well-deserved and hard-fought three points. Meekings, who produced resolute defending throughout, and Simmons, who never stopped causing the Fulham defence problems, were probably the standout performers on a bitterly cold morning.


Town: Cropper, Bennett, Whight, Carson, Meekings, McKeown, Burke, Scotcher (October 67), Simmons, Lawrence and Tiofack (Winter 67). Unused: Maduako, O'Donnell and Acott.



TWO articles in this thread, and I still have no idea who Fulham played.

WHICH TOWN?

Crawley? Luton? Ipswich? Huddersfield? Toon?


Ipswich