Author Topic: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (10.03.10)  (Read 7416 times)

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Wednesday Fulham Stuff (10.03.10)
« on: March 10, 2010, 05:48:11 AM »

Fulham Coach Roy Hodgson Plots Juventus Downfall

The Cottagers coach believes his side can do the business in Italy...

By Salvatore Landolina

Mar 9, 2010 1:53:00 PM

Fulham coach Roy Hodgson has warned Juventus that his side are looking to make history by knocking them out of the Europa League.

Hodgson and his men travel to Turin on Thursday night for the first of their leg last 16 tie, and whilst he acknowledges the quality that binds the Bianconeri, he wants to win.

"We have not had time to think about Juventus as we have had many games, but Juve are Juve, and they are a great team, not just in Italy, but in Europe," he told Tuttosport.

"We have been given little possibility of getting through and it's right to be like this.

"But we believe in it, and if we did it then we would be making history for this club."

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (10.03.10)
« Reply #1 on: March 10, 2010, 05:51:13 AM »

Fulham face an uphill battle at Juventus as the Bianconeri hit some form at just the right time

Tuesday, March 9th, 2010

Juventus v Fulham, Europa League last 16, first-leg, March 11, 2010

Juventus 1.47; Draw 3.68; Fulham 6.27

Quite simply, Thursday night offers Fulham the most glamourous night in the club’s history, and all of a sudden Juventus are going, if not great, than good guns.

It has been a rocky season for the Italian Old Lady. The first half of the year was almost a total wash-out for the black and whites as former coach Ciro Ferrara watched on from the sidelines as the Turin giants saw their Scudetto challenge never get off the ground while a 4-1 home thumping at the hands of Bayern Munich ended their involvement in the Champions League.

Facing a season with nothing to show for it, the new year brought with it some important changes, and significantly Ferrara was axed and replaced by the current no-nonsense boss, Alberto Zaccheroni. Zaccheroni’s fresh face has so far brought with it a positive upturn in fortunes, only spoiled by a 2-nil home defeat to Palermo a fortnight ago, in which Juve successfully negotiated their way past Ajax in the Europa League, whilst also picking up wins against Genoa (home), Bologna (away) and Fiorentina (away).

Last weekend’s win at the Viola was the perfect shot in the arm for Juve as they head into the business end of the season. (Juventus are 3.75 to reach the final.)

From a tactical point of view, Alberto Zaccheroni continued to show himself as a wily old fox as he tinkered with his starting eleven (adopting a 4-3-2-1 Christmas Tree formation) with Diego and Antonio Candreva playing behind lone-striker David Trezeguet. Whether by luck or design, Diego, who has been a disappointment for large spells of his first season in Serie A, revelled in his role in the hole, and the Brazilian set the match alight with a goal inside the opening two minutes. Diego continued to boss the game in midfield and was integral in Juve’s eventual 2-1 win.

The match against Fiorentina also updated Juventus’ current injury situation. On the plus side, Vincenzo Iaquinta made his first appearance since facing Fiorentina themselves last October, coming on to replace David Trezeguet in the second half, and all of a sudden the Bianconeri seem to have options up top. Further, Danish enforcer Christian Poulsen also returned after an injury lay-off against the Viola, and his timing could not have been better as Felipe Melo will miss the first leg against Fulham due to suspension after collecting too many yellow cards.

For every yin though there is a yan, and Juve also picked up some unfortunate injury concerns in Florence. Paolo De Ceglie received a knock and was replaced at halftime, while the bigger news surrounds stalwart defender Giorgio Chiellini who picked up a problem with his left thigh that will leave Juve light at the back against the Cottagers.

Turning to plucky Fulham (10.50 to reach the final), having impressively dumped UEFA Cup holders Shakhtar Donetsk out of the tournament in the last round, Roy Hodgson (the underdogs’ manager of the season) takes his unlikely squad to the Stadio Olimpico for a high-profile match which the internationally-groomed coach could never had dreamed of.

The big news for Fulham surrounds the absence of Danny Murphy through suspension, while Nicky Shorey is cup-tied for the trip to Ukraine, having already featured for Aston Villa in early rounds of the competition. That should see Stephen Kelly slot into a defensive role as he did against the Ukrainians, while Jonathan Greening or Bjorn Helge Riise may be asked to fill in for Murphy in the centre of the park.

Aside from those issues, Fulham should have a full squad to choose from, allowing the west Londoners to field almost their strongest spine possible with Mark Schwarzer, Brede Hangeland and Aaron Hughes all at the back, Chris Baird and Dickson Etuhu sitting in front of the defence, while Damien Duff and Zoltan Gera offer support from midfield to the Cottagers’ lone and prolific striker, Bobby Zamora.

With that said, this match should by all historical accounts be a David versus Goliath occasion. Yet the present stats point to a far more balanced last 16 tie, with Fulham carrying the honourable record of two wins and two draws on their Europa League travels this season, while they have only failed to score once in their last 13 European away ties.

It is statistics such as these which should give Fulham, their fans and punters plenty of pre-match optimism. (Back Fulham or the draw at 2.32.)

101gg predicts: Juventus 2 - Fulham 1 (6.29)

Juventus 1.47; Draw 3.68; Fulham 6.27

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (10.03.10)
« Reply #2 on: March 10, 2010, 05:56:27 AM »

Tough fixtures no worry for Hodgson

Author:  Ben Moss

Posted on:09 March 2010 - 04:10 PM

Fulham boss Roy Hodgson has told his players to enjoy themselves despite a packed fixture list testing the depth of the Craven Cottage squad.

Hodgson is preparing his team for a Europa League last 16 clash with Juventus, with the two legs with the Italian giants separated by a Premier League clash with Manchester United.

Hodgson commented: "Success is what you strive for as a professional sportsman and we are reaping the benefits.

"Yes we are playing a lot of games, but we are not victims in any way. You look at our next few fixtures and that is what you play sport for.

"There are many players at a lower level who would give anything to be in the position we are in.

"So my message to everyone is we may not win every game, but we should enjoy each and every one of them."

Meanwhile, the Cottagers have been linked with an interest in Shakhtar Donetsk defender Yaroslav Rakitskiy.

The 20-year-old Ukraine international impressed for Shakhtar in their Europa League round of 32 tie against the Cottagers, which was won 3-2 on aggregate by Fulham.

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (10.03.10)
« Reply #3 on: March 10, 2010, 05:58:17 AM »
Fulham 2-2 Aston Villa (aet) - Villa win on penalties

Tuesday 9th March 2010

Fulham FC News

Fulham were denied a place in the Semi-Final of the FA Youth Cup with the lottery of a penalty shoot-out denying Gary Brazil’s brave side.

It was a nervy start to the game for the young Whites, with visiting Villa enjoying the early possession and play, with goalkeeper Marcus Bettinelli doing well to beat the lively Ryan Simmonds to the ball.

The Midlands club came to Craven Cottage with an impressive reputation in youth football and had reached this stage of the competition having overcome Rochdale, West Bromwich Albion and Millwall in relatively comfortable fashion.

Fulham had also turned heads on route, seeing off Stockport County, Bolton Wanderers and Ipswich Town, with manager Gary Brazil praising his team’s character and desire.

And those attributes were evident as Fulham pushed forward, with Keanu Marsh-Brown seeing the best of the early chances. Having picked the ball up from deep, the England youth international played a clever one-two with Richard Peniket on the edge of the box before forcing a fine diving save from Calum Barratt.

Cheick Toure went close with a towering header, while at the other end Bettinelli took a grateful catch from Kofi Poyser’s effort at the back post.

Having soaked up the pressure and with the shackles off, Harris tried his luck cutting in from the left, but his curled strike deflected wide for a corner, while Barratt raced off his line to deny Marcello Trotta. It had been an entertaining half hour.

Aston Villa continued to move the ball around with confidence, but with Reece Jones and captain Alex Smith breaking up play and steering Fulham forward, the hosts’ threat was certainly growing.

And that positivity was rewarded six minutes before half-time, with the impressive Trotta escaping the attentions of Derrick Williams and Ellis Deeney and driving home a composed angled finish. A Marsh-Brown free-kick from the left almost brought about a second moments later.

Villa may have seen more of the ball, but Fulham went in at the break in front. And few could argue.

Five minutes into the second-half, Bettinelli was called into action holding on to Richard Blythe’s stooping header, before reacting quickly to thwart Poyser.

However, the Fulham number one was beaten moments later with Simmonds’ endeavour down the left forging a chance for Poyser, who took his opportunity with a confident first time finish.

A game of cat and mouse ensued, with both teams prompting passes forward and doing just enough to keep the other at bay in the final third.

A clever turn from Trotta did fashion a chance on 70 minutes however, with the Italian U19 international drawing another smart save from the hands of Barratt.

With the game opening up, Marsh-Brown had to be alert to rob Roberts of the ball when the Villa left-winger was well placed, while at the other end Daniel Devine denied Peniket with a clever intervention.

With 15 minutes left Kerim Frei did well to bring the ball down on the edge of the Villa box and the Turkish youth international did even better to fire at the visiting goal.

Trotta went even closer moments later, but his strike from the right arrowed narrowly wide.

With extra time looming Trotta freed Frei with a clever drag of the heel, but in similar fashion his strike also flashed wide of the Villa goal.

Fulham certainly looked the most likely to add a second in the final 10 minutes, with Paudie Quinn trying his luck from distance.

However, Villa hit back with another wave of possession and Fulham had Pierre to thank for blocking Arsenio Halfhuid’s close range effort with the goal in sight. But that was the last of the chances with extra time bringing 90 minutes to an end.

Fulham started extra time brightly with Marsh-Brown teasing in a cross from the right and Smith showing his ambition from 25-yards.

Villa had a decent chance when Halfhuid turned Toure on the edge of box, with the Dutch striker forcing a super save from Bettinelli.

Quinn had the best chance of the first period of extra time, but the Ireland youth international just couldn’t get enough on Marsh-Brown’s excellent far post corner.

Halfhuid and Poyser both tested Bettinelli in the second period, while a brilliant last ditch slide from Williams denied Trotta a certain chance on goal following Frei’s intelligent threaded pass.

However, the talented Trotta was given another bite shortly after, and needing little invitation blasted the ball off the underside of the Villa bar and into the back of the net with 113 minutes showing on the clock.

But Villa responded with an injury time leveller against the run of play, with Devine bundling in with almost the last kick of the match.

With a penalty shoot-out needed to separate the two teams it was Villa who held their nerve with visiting goalkeeper Barratt the hero.

Aston Villa now face Newcastle United at St James’ Park in the Semi-Final.

FULHAM: Bettinelli; Marquez-Sanchez (Frei 63), Pierre, Touré, Kamau; Marsh-Brown, Jones (Quinn 80), Smith (Pritchard 99), Harris; Trotta, Peniket. (Subs not used): Fry, Maloney.

ASTON VILLA: Barrett; Grocott, Deeney, Williams, Blythe (Nelson-Addy 80); Devine, Lampkin, Carruthers, Roberts (Halfhuid 75); Poyser, Simmonds. (Subs not used): Johnstone, Berry, Taylor.   

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (10.03.10)
« Reply #4 on: March 10, 2010, 06:02:01 AM »

Fulham 3 - Aston Villa 5

Youth Cup Quarter Final

Craven Cottage

09/03/10 - 7pm



Fulham 3 - 5 Aston Villa
Trotta (38, 115), Frei (pen)   Poyser (55, pen), Devine (120), Simmonds (pen), Deeney (pen)
Venue: Craven Cottage   Attendance: 
The Teams
Bettinelli        Barratt     
Marquez-Sanchez     64   Grocott     
Kamau        Deeney     
Jones     78   Devine     
Toure        Williams     
Pierre        Blythe     78
Marsh-Brown        Lampkin     116
Smith     100   Carruthers     
Trotta        Poyser     
Peniket        Simmonds     
Harris        Roberts     75
Fry        Halfhuid     75
Pritchard     100   Johnstone     
Maloney        Berry     116
Frei     64   Taylor     
Quinn     78   Nelson-Addy     78
Game Statistics


Good God that wasn't for the faint hearted, seems the Youth Team have been taking lessons from our first teamers! Final minute of Extra Time, Devine equilises to take us into a penalty shoot out.

Barratt does a Guzan saving TWO penalties!

Full list - Fulham - Pritchard (saved), Peniket (saved), Frei (scored), Marsh-Brown (blasts over)
Villa - Simmonds (scored), Posyer (scored), Carruthers (saved), Deeney (scorded).

1-1 at Full time, 2-2 at Extra Time Full time, 3-1 on pens....5-3 overall.

Christ what a game!

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (10.03.10)
« Reply #5 on: March 10, 2010, 06:03:05 AM »
Great Times

Tuesday 9th March 2010

Fulham FC News

As one the Club’s current longest serving players, Simon Davies clearly appreciate how far Roy Hodgson has taken the Club over the past two years.

With a mouth-watering tie in Turin on Thursday night, Davies is relishing the prospect of a historic few weeks as the Team compete across three fronts in the Barclays Premier League, FA Cup and UEFA Europa League.

“Coming from where we were two years ago, just avoiding relegation, if someone would have offered us the run of games we’ve got coming up, we’d of been jumping up and down,” said Davies.

“We’ve got Juventus, Manchester United, Juventus, Manchester City and then Spurs in the Quarter Final of the FA Cup – it’s great times.

“It’s game after game and hopefully we can keep this run going because we had a great run in February. It will be a tough month but we’ve got a lot of experience in the squad and I’m sure the Manager will negotiate the month wisely. We’ve got a big fixture pile-up now so I’m sure the manager will use the squad.”

After defeating last season’s UEFA Cup winners in Donetsk, Davies believes his Team have nothing to fear after testing themselves against arguably one of the finest teams in European football.

“I don’t think many teams will play football as well as Shakhtar Donetsk did. It was quite unanimous in our dressing room that they were the best side we’ve ever played against.

“We’ve got to believe in ourselves because we’ve had some really good results lately. We’ll play our game and remain solid. We know it’s going to be a very tough game but we also know we’re capable of getting a result.

“We can play better than we did last weekend and hopefully we will do in the next few games.”

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (10.03.10)
« Reply #6 on: March 10, 2010, 06:05:58 AM »

Win two tickets to Manchester United v Fulham

Posted By Rob Parker on March 9, 2010

It’s competition time!

Manchester United face Fulham at Old Trafford this Sunday (1.30pm kick-off) as they look to keep up momentum going in to the business end of the season.

OTP has teamed up with our pals at football-mad Betfair to offer you and a mate the chance to join the centenary celebrations at Old Trafford this weekend as Sir Alex Ferguson’s men take on Roy Hodgson’s Fulham. With both sides in great form this match could be a cracker.

For your chance to win simply answer this question: Which Manchester United player’s career in English football began at Craven Cottage?

Email your answer, name and address to before 12pm on Thursday to be in with a chance. The winner will be picked at random.

Andy Gray is now voicing his opinions at Betfair’s great football website. Come and join the debate and follow his weekly tips, match previews and monthly podcasts at – the home of football rivalry.

Betfair Ts & Cs (N.B these must be included for legal reasons)
• Over 18s only
• Gamble responsibly

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (10.03.10)
« Reply #7 on: March 10, 2010, 06:10:52 AM »

Bocanegra Battles

08 March 2010

Three games without a win, and your team is sliding down the league table.

When nothing seems to be going right, sometimes the only thing that can turn your luck is pure will. The willingness to throw your body into air challenges or the ability to get a touch on a loose ball lingering around the box.

These can be the deciding factors, and in a career lasting more than a decade in America, England, and France, Carlos Bocanegra knows this better than most.

Just days removed from a set-piece header against Holland, the USMNT defender secured an important victory for his club team when he got a toe on the end of a free kick that went bouncing through the mixer.

Call it all good practice for South Africa, where pure effort to come out on top will be a deciding factor in important matches.

Prepare for Combat.

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (10.03.10)
« Reply #8 on: March 10, 2010, 06:16:45 AM »
COMPETITION: Win tickets to Manchester United v Fulham - courtesy of Betfair

By Sportsmail Reporter

Last updated at 5:19 PM on 09th March 2010

Manchester United will be out for revenge when they face Fulham at Old Trafford on Sunday and Sportsmail has teamed up with our pals at football-mad Betfair to offer you and a mate the chance to be there.

The Cottagers stunned Sir Alex Ferguson's side 3-0 in December but the Red Devils have lost just once in the Premier League since as they fight it out with Chelsea and Arsenal for the title.

 Bobby dazzler: Bobby Zamora was on target as Fulham beat United in December
To be in with a chance of winning a pair of tickets, answer the following question:

Which Fulham player will join United in the summer?

a) Chris Smalling

b) Clint Dempsey

c) Brede Hangeland

Click HERE for a big clue

E-mail your answer, along with your name, address and contact number to: arrive no later than 12pm THURSDAY, MARCH 11, 2010.

PLEASE NOTE: You must be 18 or over to enter and include the words 'UNITED BETFAIR' in your subject box to validate your entry.

These tickets are for home fans only and do not include travel to/from the ground or any hospitality.

Gamble responsibly

Other normal Associated terms and conditions apply. The Editor's decision is final.

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (10.03.10)
« Reply #9 on: March 10, 2010, 06:28:24 AM »

Zola: Fulham can beat Juventus

Published 22:45 09/03/10

By Neil McLeman

Gianfranco Zola reckons the strength of the Premier League means Fulham can overpower Italian giants Juventus tomorrow.

Roy Hodgson yesterday admitted his side would make "history" by beating the Serie A side to reach the last eight of the Europa League.

Fulham will be without suspended captain Danny Murphy in the first leg in Turin as they bid to extend their unbeaten run to 10 games in all competitions.

But injury-ravaged Juventus, who are down in fifth place in Serie A, will be without the injured Gianluigi Buffon, Giorgio Chiellini and Amauri, while Felipe Melo is banned.

And West Ham manager Zola, a former Italy striker, is predicting a "tight game" in Torino because of the high standard of English football.

"I think it will be very close and Fulham have got a chance even against a famous club like Juventus," said the ex-Chelsea forward.

"That tells you that the Premier League is more competitive than Serie A. It is not that there are no good teams in Italy - there are.

“On paper they are very good. But right now the Premier league has got a different speed and different rhythm and everyone is sharper.

“Even Inter, Milan, Juventus, Roma are very good teams but they are not as sharp as the Premier League teams because the competition right now and the speed of the game is making everybody better.

“In the 90s, it was the same for Italy. The competition level was so high over there that everyone was getting better and better. Even myself. I noticed the difference when I came to England. Now the opposite is the case."

Hodgson, the former coach of Inter Milan and Udinese, said: "Until now we have not been able to even think about Juventus because we have had many games.

"But Juve are Juve, a great team, not just in Italy, but in Europe.

"We haven't been given much of a chance to get through and that is fair. But we believe we can do it and if we can, we would be making history for this club."

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (10.03.10)
« Reply #10 on: March 10, 2010, 06:35:04 AM »

9th March 2010 – Come into my Parlour

Well it worked against Bolton so why not give it a go against Fulham: smother them away from home; wrap them up and entice them back to the Lane where we devour them whole.

 'Come into my parlour said the spider to the fly'

.Ah but what about Leeds? That was  reverse psychology: lull them into a false sense of security; give them a chance at the Lane; then swat them just when they think they've cracked it. So I'm  relieved in a disappointed Tottenham fan sort of way but clearly it was all part of the Tottenham overall grand plan. Neither side were prepared to risk everything to secure a Wembley semi-final place against Portsmouth.  Fulham, although at home, had Europa Cup hopes and Juventas on their minds. With a depleted squad, we were content to do enough to bring them back to the Lane.

On a tight ground they were compact in defence and unadventurous in attack. Neither Crouch nor Pavlyuchenko got much room to work in. Both teams were missing their creative heart in midfield with Murphy and Huddlestone out. It opened up a little in the last quarter but neither side really departed from the safety first option. None-the-less on a rough hard pitch in  windy conditions an impressive amount of decent football was played and not just by us. We had the better of the possession and they had the best of the few chances . Both keepers made a couple of decent saves. We forced another 9 corners and didn't make any of them count.

Palacios was voted our man of the match but Zamora was the best player on the pitch on the day. He has certainly changed his game since he was with us, relying more on strength to hold off challenges. He played most of the game with his back to goal, and trying to set up others . In his brief time at Spurs under Hoddle  he scored a single goal in 20 or so appearances.

Palacios under the threat of a two game suspension for ten yellows patrolled the mid-field with intent but with more circumspection than usual, as he did at Everton and was all the better for it. No late lunges and more precision and time in his passing. Bale Modric and Kranjcar made a number of decent runs and we didn't overuse the long ball. Modric, playing in the centre, didn't  make as much impact on the game as we would have liked. It took him some time  to become more attack minded although he was playing in his normal position for Croatia. Perhaps he was under instructions to tend to his defensive duties first.

Harry chose the Ekotto option in defence, with Bale in midfield and it worked well enough although with several midfielders to return it may not be a long term option. Decisions will have to be made, sooner rather than later with any luck. Pavlyuchenko's control was poor in the first half but improved later and he made a useful contribution by dropping deep to cover. There was little sign of any rapport between the two strikers. They played like divorcees at a party determined to ignore each other. Defoe looked more threatening in his ten minute cameo than either of them.

A replay at the Lane is by no means a worst case scenario. None of our rivals for the top four  played in the Premiership this  weekend so that's yet another week in fourth to enjoy. Wigan bearing us no grudge beat Liverpool to give us a game in hand as well as a point of daylight and a superior goal difference. Our heavy defeat of Wigan might prove vital in the final analysis.

Harry said this week that what is important is 'the way we play'. I don't believe or agree with a lot of what Harry says except when he is running for the 'statement of the bleedin' obvious' award, but I hope he means this and if he does I will cut him a lot of slack. We haven't sold out to a billionaire playboy who wants results the day before yesterday and we haven't sacrificed our values in the search for glory and success so far. On Monday night Liverpool were ragged but also crude and over physical in a way that I hope we never resort to. And it didn't even work. Was this the Wigan side that we convincingly beat twice this season?

This can all be frustrating to older fans hungry for the return of the Glory, Glory days or for those too young to remember them, or fed up with hearing about them. Building success and making steady progress is more satisfying in the long run. Trust me. Who outside their fans loves Chelsea? Are they respected and admired? Similarly Man.City. Aren't we all delighted that the  Abu Dhabi billions haven't bought them instant payback and have already led to the sacking of one manager. Birmingham, even with access to large Hong Kong fortunes, have done it the hard way and are commended for it.

We have won a lot of attention this season by the quality of our football. We have restored a lot of pride in ourselves and remained true to our traditions. It can all come unstuck obviously but there is no reason at the moment to suppose that it will.

The travails at Portsmouth, who have had more owners than league wins this season, and the discontent at Man. Utd should give us all pause for thought. Less than half of even Premiership clubs are financially viable and when new accounting rules are brought in, which they assuredly will be in the aftermath of the banking crises, then clubs who are trying to cut corners may find themselves broken down on the hard shoulder and not in the fast lane with the top down.

Mind you I've had this bloody 'Doom is Nigh' placard round my neck for some time.

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (10.03.10)
« Reply #11 on: March 10, 2010, 06:37:21 AM »

Juventus-Fulham: Much Improved Bianconeri Await Cottagers

by Adamo Digby 

Featured Columnist

Written on March 09, 2010  Gabriele Maltinti/Getty Images When the draw was made for the next round of Europa League ties, Fulham had every right to be optimistic when seeing the name Juventus pulled out of the pot.

The Old Lady of Italian football was in turmoil, losing games domestically and being eliminated in humiliating fashion from the Champions League, losing 4-1 to Bayern Munich.

All this while Fulham were riding high in the English Premier League, enjoying one of the best spells in their history under vastly underrated coach Roy Hodgson.

Juventus limped into January, losing five games out of six, falling as low as sixth in the Serie A table, and suffering elimination from the Italian Cup as well as the Champions League. A difficult-looking Europa League tie with Ajax awaited a team that was in a desperate state and whose fans had taken to setting fire to the stadium in protest at the lack of progress.

On Jan. 29 the decision was made to part company with coach Ciro Ferrara, a Juventus legend in his first season of club management. His appointment was a gamble that looked to be paying off in the early part of the season, but as injury, fatigue, and poor form set in, the club's hierarchy were left with no choice but to make a change.

That change was hardly inspiring at first, as ex-Milan, Inter, and Lazio coach Alberto Zaccheroni took charge of the fallen giant. Out of work since being fired by Juve's city rivals Torino in 2006, he was hardly the big-name appointment the fans craved.

Yet somehow, despite not being appointed until after the transfer window closed, unable to bring in any players to make a difference, Zaccheroni made this Juventus squad his own, transforming them from a disconnected bunch lacking direction into a compact, resilient, and cohesive team.

Players who previously were being jeered by their own fans were almost instantly improved. Felipe Melo and Momo Sissoko drive them on, while iconic captain Alessandro Del Piero has found his form once more to create goals both for himself and strike partner Amauri.

Ajax were humbled 2-1 in Amsterdam and then shut down in the return leg in Turin, a stereotypical Italian performance where neither side posed a genuine goal threat at any point.

A return to winning ways in Serie A followed too, with victories over Bologna and Genoa seeing them rise up the table and back into a Champions League berth.

The turnaround has not been without fault—a home loss to Palermo last week saw fans fear the worst had returned—but beating storied rivals Fiorentina away from home this weekend has done much to appease those fears.

That one of the goals came from a player whose form has mirrored that of Juventus all season long, Brazilian playmaker Diego, is perhaps as big an indicator of the improvement as the result.

Juventus still has a long way to go to rediscover the standing in world football it enjoyed before the Calciopoli scandal saw them relegated to the second tier, but under Zaccheroni they are at least headed in the right direction.
Fulham have reasons to fear them now, and with their own talisman Danny Murphy suspended, they have an even tougher task. Roy Hodgson, who knows Italian football well after spells in charge of both Inter and Udinese, will prepare his team well as always.
La Vecchia Signora awaits, and you know what they say about a woman scorned...

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (10.03.10)
« Reply #12 on: March 10, 2010, 06:40:47 AM »

Manchester United defender Wes Brown out for six weeks with broken bone in foot

Manchester United have confirmed defender Wes Brown will miss the next four to six weeks with a broken bone in his foot.
By Telegraph staff and agencies

Published: 6:25PM GMT 09 Mar 2010

The news rules the 30 year-old out of Wednesday's Champions League last-16 return leg against AC Milan and a significant portion of Manchester United's end-of-season fixture programme.

Brown will miss Premier League games against Fulham, Liverpool, Bolton and a potential title-decider against Chelsea on April 3. The injury will also rule him out of the Champions League quarter-finals were United to progress.

Brown, who also broke a metatarsal bone just over a year ago, would then almost certainly be absent for the games with Blackburn on April 11 and against derby rivals Manchester City a week later.

"It's just unfortunate," United manager Sir Alex Ferguson admitted.

"He has had a career blighted by injury and they've all been long ones, and now he has another. He'll be out for four to six weeks.

"I hope to get him back for some of the season."

Brown picked up the injury during United's 1-0 win over Wolves on Saturday in a challenge with Matt Jarvis, and left Molineux with a protective boot on the damaged foot.

The recovery timescale is at least good news for England, with Brown expected to be part of Fabio Capello's squad for the World Cup after playing at right-back against Egypt last week.

Brown's absence further adds to Ferguson's woes ahead of tomorrow night's crucial European encounter against Milan, which will see United defending a 3-2 advantage from the first leg at the San Siro.

Anderson (knee), Ryan Giggs (arm) and John O'Shea (leg) are also out, although Ferguson confirmed the in-form Wayne Rooney would be available after a knee problem.

"He is fit," Ferguson said of the England frontman.

"There is a rapid improvement from Saturday morning because on Friday evening I didn't think he had any chance.

"It's good news. He is a threat to anyone at the moment."

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (10.03.10)
« Reply #13 on: March 10, 2010, 06:43:12 AM »

Fulham keeping tabs on O’Hara situation

01:30 PM 09 March, 2010

Fulham Football Club are keen on Jamie O’Hara.

The midfielder is on loan at Portsmouth this season, and he admits he faces an uncertain future when he returns to Tottenham Hotspur in the summer.

Roy Hodgson is believed to be keeping tabs on O’Hara’s situation, and the player believes his performances for Pompey will have won him admirers from within the Premier League.

"I'm going to sit down and have a chat with Harry Redknapp n the summer,” he said. "If he feels it's time for me to move on, I think I've done well enough to interest a few other Premier League clubs."

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (10.03.10)
« Reply #14 on: March 10, 2010, 06:47:11 AM »

Juventus Reveal Chiellini's Injury Is Less Serious Than Initially Feared

Adrian Del Monte, March 9th, 2010

Recent scans on the defender's thigh however have confirmed that the damage done is less serious than initially believed.

Juventus were dealt a severe blow following their impressive 2-1 victory away to Fiorentina at the weekend, with the news that their star defender Giorgio Chiellini may be forced to miss up to a month of football with what looked to be a serious thigh strain.

Recent scans on the defender's thigh however have confirmed that the damage done is less serious than initially believed, meaning that Chiellini could be available for selection this weekend.
The club released a statement on the injury on their official website that read: "This evening, Chiellini has undergone MRI scans that were undertaken by Professor Carlo Faletti, at the Fornaca di Sessant Clinic. There is no tear in the muscle in the back of his left leg."

The Italian international is certain to miss the Bianconeri's meeting with Fulham in the Europa League on Thursday, and may also sit out the Siena clash on Sunday, despite being in contention for a recall to the squad.

A return against the English outfit in the return leg at Craven Cottage on March 18 is the most likely outcome.

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (10.03.10)
« Reply #15 on: March 10, 2010, 06:50:17 AM »
Diego to give Ful attention

Published: Today

JUVENTUS ace Diego fears Fulham - even though they are not an English big gun.

The sides clash in the Europa League in Turin tomorrow. Diego said: "They are no Man U but English clubs aren't easy to beat."

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« Last Edit: March 10, 2010, 07:08:05 AM by White Noise »

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (10.03.10)
« Reply #16 on: March 10, 2010, 11:13:11 AM »
Juventus Transport Info

Wednesday 10th March 2010

Fulham FC News

Supporters who are travelling independently to the away leg of the UEFA Europa League Round of 16 tie against Juventus are reminded that the local authorities are operating a free shuttle bus service for Fulham fans to use.

Buses will leave from 5:00pm, directly to the Stadio Olimpico di Torino.

Supporters are asked to gather outside the Porta Nuova railway station. Shuttle buses will also be available for the return journey after the game. Please note that you may be held inside the stadium for up to 30 minutes after the final whistle.

It is the policy of Juventus FC not to reprint duplicate match tickets, so please ensure that you take good care of your ticket. You will also be required to show your passport as proof of identity when entering the stadium.

In line with competition regulations no alcohol will be on sale inside the stadium and it is an offence to attempt to bring alcohol into the ground. Supporters who smoke should note that at the Stadio Olimpico di Torino this is permitted only in dedicated areas marked 'Posto Fumo'.

If you require any information or assistance during your trip, please contact Supporter Relations Manager Tommy Guthrie on 07717 225 164. You can also contact a Club representative in London, during office hours, on 0870 442 1222.

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (10.03.10)
« Reply #17 on: March 10, 2010, 11:14:29 AM »
Juventus Screening

Wednesday 10th March 2010

Fulham FC News

Roy Hodgson’s Team face two-time European Champions Juventus in the last 16 of the UEFA Europa League, with the first leg taking place in Turin on Thursday 11th March.

Don't worry if you can't make it to the game, as you can cheer the Team on with fellow Fulham fans at one of our stylish bars at the Cottage (from 6pm, Thursday 11 March).

We are also offering a great value food and drink deal - a beer and a pie for just £5 .

Arguably the biggest match in the Club’s history, this is a game you won't want to miss!

Register your interest
Register your interest now   
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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (10.03.10)
« Reply #18 on: March 10, 2010, 11:16:08 AM »

And what about Fulham's Bobby Zamora? It was not too long ago that the former Tottenham striker, who endured an ill-fated six month stint at White Hart Lane before joining West Ham, was a painted as a laughing stock among opposition fans.

But he has silenced the boo boys this season with 15 goals which have helped his club reach the last 16 of the Europa League.

"I know the fans were chanting his name for England and that was quite right," said Fulham's experienced manager Roy Hodgson, who cites Capello as a 'friend', recently.

But while few observers would keel over in shock if either Hart or Zamora boarded the England plane to South Africa, there are other players who might as well book their summer holidays now than wait for a call from Capello - despite the backing of their managers.

Take Derby's Nigel Clough. A likeable chap, honest and hard-working. But he may well regret suggesting in December that Stephen Bywater could be England's goalkeeping saviour in South Africa.

Despite Sam Allardyce backing Paul Robinson for an England recall, the Blackburn keeper is highly unlikely to add to his 41 caps anytime soon.

And Bolton's Zat Knight can also forget learning the words to the national anthem. Knight was capped twice in 2005 and Owen Coyle believes there is no reason why he cannot feature this summer. He's as good as anything about, if not better," said the Bolton manager, with a straight face.

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (10.03.10)
« Reply #19 on: March 10, 2010, 11:24:51 AM »

Wolves facing a losing battle to keep Doyle

Published 22:45 09/03/10

By MirrorFootball

Mick McCarthy has admitted that Wolves stand "no chance" of keeping £6.5million striker Kevin Doyle if they are relegated.

Wolves boss McCarthy is already preparing himself for the prospect of losing Doyle if he fails in his survival mission at Molineux.

Republic of Ireland international Doyle has impressed in a struggling side since McCarthy broke the Wolves' transfer record to bring him to Molineux.

And Aston Villa, Fulham, Everton and Sunderland will all battle to sign the 26-year-old if Wolves slip down to the Championship.

McCarthy said: "If we go down, we have no chance of holding on to him. If we stay up, we might still have a problem because there will be a few interested.

"We have seen all the teams now and I've not noticed many better players than him.

"I'm not doing a selling job saying that because I'm not telling other managers anything they don't know.

"He would not be out of place in the company of Manchester United, Manchester City and Chelsea."