Author Topic: Friday Fulham Stuff (19/10/12)...  (Read 8677 times)

Offline whitejc

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Friday Fulham Stuff (19/10/12)...
« on: October 19, 2012, 04:32:16 AM »
 
Kacaniklic agent makes Cottagers claim

The agent of Fulham starlet Alex Kacaniklic has confirmed that the winger is still fully committed to staying at Craven Cottage.

The 21-year-old Sweden international has been heavily linked with several Italian Serie A clubs since the start of this season. Suggestions of a departure from the Cottagers intensified this week, when Kacaniklic was praised for his performance in his country's thrilling fightback from 4-0 down to draw 4-4 in Germany on Tuesday.

However, while Kacaniklic has struggled for first-team football under Cottagers boss Martin Jol, despite impressing during a loan spell at Watford last season, the youngster's representative, Miroslav Jaganjac, is adamant that he is happy to stay put given that he only signed a new deal to keep him on board until 2014 during the summer.

He told FotbollDirekt.se: "I don't want to comment on the speculation.

"What I can say is Alex is young, he is performing and good clubs want good players.

"Of course there's a bigger interest, but the only important thing right now is Fulham.

"His effort against a world class defender such as Boateng and the match against Germany, the major clubs watched that game for sure.

"But I point out that he is happy at Fulham and now he wants nothing more than to make it as good as possible and lift the team."


http://www.clubcall.com/fulham/kacaniklic-agent-makes-cottagers-claim-1485781.html?

Offline whitejc

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Re: Friday Fulham Stuff (19/10/12)...
« Reply #1 on: October 19, 2012, 04:33:23 AM »
 
Christian Walton: Plymouth Argyle say no Fulham bid

Plymouth Argyle manager Carl Fletcher says Fulham have not made a bid for teenage goalkeeper Christian Walton.

It has been reported that Fulham are ready to spend £300,000  on the 16-year-old, who not played a first-team game.

"From our point of view we've got some good youngsters," Fletcher said.

"And from my point of view we want to keep them here and progress them through, and they can play lots of games for Argyle, and then we can sell them for massive money."

Cornish-born Walton has been at Argyle since the age of 10 and progressed up through the club's youth system.

He has had first-team experience when he was an unused substitute in Argyle's FA Cup first round draw against Stourbridge last year.

However Fletcher conceded that if the price was right the club would have to let Walton go.

"At the end of the day if someone's prepared to pay good money for a player, any player, whoever it may be, the club as a business has to look at that and you can't turn it down," he told BBC Radio Devon.

"He's a good prospect and we'd like him here to play some games and play for the first team in years to come, but at the end of the day every player has his price."



http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/19992734?

Offline whitejc

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Re: Friday Fulham Stuff (19/10/12)...
« Reply #2 on: October 19, 2012, 04:34:18 AM »
 
Everton Sold Out

Tickets for our home fixture against Everton are now sold out. Supporters yet to secure their seats for the game are advised to check other options.

Season Ticket Holders unable to attend the match are able to sell their tickets to Fulham Members through our Official Ticket Marketplace partner viagogo.

Hospitality packages are still available for this game, with spaces in our beautiful Riverside Restaurant where you can enjoy a delicious hot meal prior to kick-off. After your meal, you can take your Riverside Stand seats in the Directors Area to watch all the action unfold.


http://www.fulhamfc.com/news/2012/october/18/everton-sold-out?


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Re: Friday Fulham Stuff (19/10/12)...
« Reply #3 on: October 19, 2012, 04:36:22 AM »
 
Harriers get Peniket for FA Cup
Kidderminster Harriers have been granted permission from Fulham to play on-loan striker Richard Peniket in their FA Cup tie at Grimsby.



But Harriers defender Kevin Austin could be turning out for Brackley after agreeing to join the Blue Square North club on a month's loan.

The 27-year-old joined in the summer from Burton Albion but hasn't figured since appearing in the club's opening five straight defeats.

However, Peniket is allowed to figure but could be on the bench with Ryan Rowe and Anthony Malbon currently preferred in attack.

Harriers' other loanee, Adam Watkins, has not been allowed to play by his parent club Luton, with his terms up a week on Saturday.

Peniket is with Harriers until January having arrived at Aggborough at the end of August but has yet to score in eight appearances.

However, Harriers assistant boss Gary Whild insists management have been pleased with the contribution of the 19-year-old.

He said: "I think he has done well and settled in here – he is a bright young lad and has some local roots being a Stourbridge lad.

“Other than stating the obvious in saying he would like to have scored a few goals, I think he has made a decent contribution for us."

Whild admitted he wasn't surprised Watkins is not allowed to feature on Saturday, as he is further up the pecking order at Luton.

He said: "Adam is still very much part of Luton’s plans and they are a side at the same level as us.

“Richard would tell you himself that he isn’t about to feature for Fulham in the competition in the very near future.

“He’s come here until January and Fulham want him to keep developing, which he has been doing.

“It would be strange for them to not want him to feature in such a big game, so the situation is perfectly understandable.”



http://www.expressandstar.com/sport/other-football/kidderminster-harriers-fc/2012/10/18/harriers-get-peniket-nod-for-fa-cup/?

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Re: Friday Fulham Stuff (19/10/12)...
« Reply #4 on: October 19, 2012, 04:38:21 AM »
 
Former Fulham favourite eyes Craven Cottage return


Sean Davis

SEAN Davis revealed this week the biggest mistake of his football life was to leave Fulham.

The former Whites midfielder had conceded defeat in a three-year battle to overcome a sickening knee injury and admits he would love to return to Craven Cottage in some capacity.

The 33-year-old former England squad member has had to bring the curtain down on a career that started at the Cottage when he was 17. An hour before his debut in front of nearly 6,000 against Cambridge 16 years ago next week, the apprentice was cleaning boots with other hopefuls.

"Leave that bunch of muppets," said assistant manager Alan Cork. "I’ve got another job for you," was how Davis remembered the moment, adding: "I came on as sub, and all through the game I was as nervous as hell. I think I may have only touched the ball once."

Davis had to wait another three seasons before the manager who would change his life recognised the defensive midfielder the club needed.

"Jean Tigana and me had a bit of a love-hate relationship but his coaching and training methods were miles ahead of anyone else," said Davis.

"I’ve been lucky because Paul Bracewell and Ray Wilkins were also midfielders who managed the club, and they looked after me too."

There was a glorious Championship-winning season under Tigana in 2001 when Davis came into his own as the club returned to the top flight for the first time in 32 years and became the only club ever to reach 100 points twice.

But three years later, Davis believed the glory days were over and he needed to move on – a decision he now regrets.

"It wasn’t about the money that made me join Spurs," he said. "Fulham were offering me more to stay. But Tigana and big names left, and that was a huge blow I thought.

"But, as I discovered, the grass is not always greener."

Injuries blighted his time at White Hart Lane and Davis was none too enamoured when his little girl needed specialist treatment at Chelsea & Westminster Hospital and he was still forced to attend training.

"Spurs showed a lack of compassion and respect at that moment," he said, "but the injuries were also a problem."

Ironically for a man who would like to get back to the Cottage, the current Whites boss is not high on Davis’s Christmas card list either.

"Martin Jol is a great coach, but we didn’t see eye to eye," said Davis. "When I was asked to train with Clive Allen and the reserves the writing was on the wall."

Portsmouth and Bolton were the next stopping-off points that went with another batch of mixed successes before Davis finally called it a day.

"I’m not sure about doing my (coaching) badges," he said. "But I remember back to being a kid in Battersea Park plucked out of all there but knowing there were many more who could have made it with the right mentoring.

"It would be great to do that for Fulham."

Davis has one passing tinge of regret. He was until 2008 the only footballer to have played in all four divisions with the same club – a record equalled by Hull’s Ian Ashbee when the Tigers were promoted to the Premier League via the play-offs.

"I think I was lucky, I came from the bottom and worked upwards. It made me work all the harder," added Davis.

"It may sound cheesy, but when I was sidelined during the last three years, I would play highlights of that Fulham 2001 season on an old video cassette that made me all the prouder."



Read More http://www.fulhamchronicle.co.uk/fulham-fc/2012/10/18/82029-32059459/?#ixzz29iFNlJ6f

Offline whitejc

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Re: Friday Fulham Stuff (19/10/12)...
« Reply #5 on: October 19, 2012, 04:40:24 AM »
 
Opta Stats: Fulham to heap misery on struggling Villa

Christian Crowther uses the Opta stats to predict convincing wins for Fulham and Arsenal...

Fulham v Aston Villa (Saturday, 15:00)

Only Norwich (6.8%) have a worse chance conversion rate than Paul Lambert's Villa side this season (9.8%)
These are naturally the type of stats which worry fans and are inherently synonymous with teams planted at the wrong end of the table. Aston Villa have shown plenty to trouble their supporters and are currently hovering precariously above the relegation zone. Therefore, a trip to Fulham where the Cottagers have won nine of their last 13 games and, in stark contrast to their visitors, actually have the best chance conversion rate in the top flight, will offer little solace.


http://betting.betfair.com/football/opta/opta-stats-fulham-to-heap-misery-on-villa-181012-579.html?


Offline whitejc

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Re: Friday Fulham Stuff (19/10/12)...
« Reply #6 on: October 19, 2012, 03:25:07 PM »
 
Fulham v Villa: Bowery hails Lambert's winning mentality

Jordan Bowery says the pre-match message from manager Paul Lambert will be no different this week when Villa travel to Fulham: "Go out and win!"

Bowery insists that's been the positive outlook of the gaffer before each game this term.

Villa's new powerful forward says this firm focus on picking up three points is "drilled" into the players.

Bowery is relishing travelling to the capital with the claret and blues and says confidence in camp is high, despite the Tottenham loss in the last encounter.

He said: "We're looking forward to the Fulham game. We lost at Tottenham but we could have won that game, we had some good chances and played some good football.

"We won't dwell on that result though. We'll concentrate on the performance and try to beat Fulham.

"We're confident and we'll be going up there to win. We just need to keep our focus and play well on the day.

"They have a good team with some good players but we'll be aiming to win.

"That's what the manager drills into us. We'll go there to try and get the three points."

Make sure you're here to back the boys against Norwich City.


http://www.avfc.co.uk/page/NewsDetail/0,,10265~2950525,00.html?

Offline whitejc

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Re: Friday Fulham Stuff (19/10/12)...
« Reply #7 on: October 19, 2012, 03:26:12 PM »
 
Fulham v Villa: Delph on why pre-match training sessions are perfect

Fabian Delph has hailed Villa's pre-match training sessions, saying they are perfectly tailored to each weekend's game.

Delph admits he loves working with Paul Lambert and Ian Culverhouse at Bodymoor Heath because of the bright, bubbly environment.

But it's the days preceding a matchday where sessions really come alive, with work done specifically for the upcoming match.

He said: "We are going into every game thinking we can win the game. The gaffer has instilled a winning mentality into the team and in training it is all about winning.

"His assistant Ian Culverhouse puts on sessions that are geared towards the weekend and his sessions are unbelievable.

"There are a lot of points made in sessions and everything is aimed towards that weekend's match.

"Fulham will be a tough game but I don't see why we can't go there and do well."

Delph accepts Villa haven't hit top-form yet but believes the signs are encouraging as the season continues.

He added: "It will be an interesting clash. Obviously from last season we have changed our system and we are attacking a lot more.

"It could take a while for us to adapt but I think in games so far, especially against Manchester City, we have shown a great mentality.

"We played with the ball and I think we were excellent possession-wise. We have shown that in other games as well."

Make sure you're here to back the boys against Norwich City.



http://www.avfc.co.uk/page/NewsDetail/0,,10265~2952508,00.html?

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Re: Friday Fulham Stuff (19/10/12)...
« Reply #8 on: October 19, 2012, 03:29:27 PM »
 
FM Preview: Fulham v Aston Villa 20 Oct 2012

Fulham prepare to entertain Aston Villa at Craven Cottage on Saturday afternoon, and hold the advantage on previous meetings between the two. Of the 29 games played, Cottagers have recorded 13 wins, and Aston Villa have come away with 4 victories.

The most recent encounter between these two sides at Craven Cottage was just last season, in August 2011, when they played out a goalless draw in a Premier League match.

Recent encounters between the teams
Season   Date   Team   Result   Team   Comp
2011/2012   Sat 10 Mar   Aston Villa   1 - 0   Fulham   Premier League
2011/2012   Sat 13 Aug   Fulham   0-0   Aston Villa   Premier League
2010/2011   Sat 05 Feb   Aston Villa   2 - 2   Fulham   Premier League
2010/2011   Sat 06 Nov   Fulham   1 - 1   Aston Villa   Premier League
2009/2010   Sat 30 Jan   Fulham   0 - 2   Aston Villa   Premier League
2009/2010   Sun 30 Aug   Aston Villa   2 - 0   Fulham   Premier League
2008/2009   Sat 09 May   Fulham   3 - 1   Aston Villa   Premier League
 
Recent respective form guides
Fulham have lost just once in their last six home games, winning four and drawing the other one. These high-scoring games have yielded a total of 14 goals for the Cottagers, with 5 goals against.

In complete contrast to Fulham, Aston Villa are having a torrid time on their travels, accumulating just 1 victory and 1 draw from their last six played. While the Villans have hit 6 goals, 12 have hit the back of the wrong net.

Fulham's 10 points from 7 games sees them lie inside the top half of the table, in 9th position.

Aston Villa are hovering perilously just above the relegation zone, with 5 points from 7 matches.

Current overall team form
Team   P   W   D   L   F   A   P
Fulham   6   2   1   3   8   9   7
Aston Villa   6   2   2   2   9   10   8
 
FootyMad's prediction ...
Fulham may be coming up against a decent side in Aston Villa, but we do believe that its going to result in a narrow home win for the Cottagers. Home Win

Sequence statistics
Team   Sequences
Fulham   6 games since last home draw.
Not won in the 2 most recent games.
Aston Villa   4 games since last away draw.
No win in the 2 most recent games.


http://www.fulham-mad.co.uk/news/prev/fm_preview_fulham_v_aston_villa_20_oct_2012_763220/index.shtml?


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Re: Friday Fulham Stuff (19/10/12)...
« Reply #9 on: October 19, 2012, 03:30:38 PM »
 
Excellence of Hughes stifles Ronaldo threat

So, how do you stop Cristiano Ronaldo then? Put Aaron Hughes on him, that's how!

After Tuesday night's 1-1 draw, the Portugal skipper will have been wishing that Hughes had not come out of international retirement.

Northern Ireland boss Michael O'Neill will be grateful that he did.

The 32-year-old from Cookstown had a terrific game in Porto marshalling Real Madrid's finest in a way that might now enter coaching manuals.

Barcelona defenders will definitely be reading that chapter because while Ronaldo gets plenty of joy against them, he was stifled by the excellence of Hughes, playing at right-back rather than the central defensive position he occupies so well for his club.

Typically Hughes didn't want to take all the credit for keeping Ronaldo relatively quiet on his 100th cap and insisted that Hull City's Corry Evans in front of him deserved much praise in not allowing the Madrid master to run riot like he has done all over the world in recent years.

“Corry had a fantastic game in front of me,” said Hughes.

“It maybe goes unseen a little bit the amount of work he puts in, but from my point of view when someone like Ronaldo is running at you, you can keep him one way because you know Corry is coming at the other side to protect your inside. That helps a lot.”

Hughes added that he felt the Portuguese threat wasn't just going to come from Ronaldo which was why it was so vital that the Northern Ireland team kept their discipline.

The former Newcastle and Aston Villa ace stated: “It’s not just Ronaldo you have to watch because their movement up front is so good.

“He’ll drift over to the right side and Nani will come over from the left, then they’ll both drift over to one side and you’ll end up with two or three of them on your side.

“In that respect, that’s where your team shape and things you work on during the week are important.

“It’s a great point and the thing that stands out most is the performance. In terms of the opposition we came out with not much chance — that’s what people were saying anyway — but we delivered on what we’d worked on all week in training and got our reward.”

Hughes felt that the performance against Portugal was similar to the one in Russia at the start of the World Cup qualifying campaign, but unfortunately the trip to Moscow ended in a 2-0 defeat.

Then came the disappointing 1-1 draw against Luxembourg at Windsor Park. Northern Ireland are back in Belfast next month for a home match with Azerbaijan.

“The next game is totally different again,” said Hughes.

“After the draw in Portugal expectations will be up again that we should beat Azerbaijan but they’ll not be an easy team to defeat.

“We’re hoping though that our home form will be good and we can pick up a few points at Windsor and if that gets us back into contention for the last few games in the group that'll be great.

“Our draw with Portugal is something to build on. We won’t get carried away, certainly, but we’ve set a standard now that we know we can play to.”



Read more: http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/sport/football/international/excellence-of-hughes-stifles-ronaldo-threat-16226094.html#ixzz29ktbaRjU

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Re: Friday Fulham Stuff (19/10/12)...
« Reply #10 on: October 19, 2012, 03:32:34 PM »
 
Fulham v Aston Villa: Mat Kendrick's pre-match notes

A quick look at the facts and figures ahead of Aston Villa's visit to Fulham.

WHO'S HOT: Christian Benteke banished his Spurs nightmare with two goals for Belgium.

WHAT'S NOT: Villa's recent Premier League win record - their last top-flight vctory away came at Wolves in January.

LAST FIVE GAMES

FULHAM LWWLD

VILLA WLWDL

VILLA: Guzan, Lowton, Vlaar, Clark, Bennett, El Ahmadi, Delph, Agbonlahor, Holman, Bent, Benteke, Given, Bannan, Weimann, Albrighton, Lichaj, Westwood, Herd.Injured: Ireland (arm), Bennett (gashed leg), El Ahmadi (leg), Dunne (groin), Gardner (knee).Referee: C Foy (Merseyside)

FORECAST Draw

LAST TIME THEY MET

March 10 2012, Villa 1 Fulham 0: Andi Weimann scores a dramatic last-gasp winner, which is widely regarded as the goal that ultimately kept Villa up.



Read More http://www.birminghammail.net/birmingham-sport/aston-villa-fc/aston-villa-news/2012/10/19/fulham-v-aston-villa-mat-kendrick-s-pre-match-notes-97319-32062727/?#ixzz29ku3Y39H

Offline whitejc

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Re: Friday Fulham Stuff (19/10/12)...
« Reply #11 on: October 19, 2012, 03:34:20 PM »
 
STATS: Fulham’s improving work rate vs Holman’s defensive work for Aston Villa

- Fulham v Aston Villa 15:00

- Fulham could only take a point out of their game with newly promoted Southampton, despite goals from Keiron Richardson and an own goal earnt from a deflected John Arne Riise shot

- Southampton are consistently one of the hardest working teams in the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index, and they brought that out in Fulham in their last match. Fulham covered 67.85 miles in that game, by far their most as a team so far this season, while Bryan Ruiz’s 6.94 miles is a high for an individual Fulham player this season

- Despite the result, Fulham’s Damien Duff remains in the top ten in the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index have scored three goals so far this season and also contributed an assist. Duff has also delivered 13 crosses.

- Fulham’s old guard have been leading the way this season. Riise is another Fulham veteran who continues to impress this season, and has contributed three assists so far this season, while Steve Sidwell has both won and attempted the fifth highest number of tackles in the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index with 20 won and 35 attempted

- Mark Schwarzer, another established player, has been the busiest goalkeeper in the league so far this season with 42 saves so far

- Striker Hugo Rodallega, in contrast, is a new addition making an impact at Craven Cottage. He may only have one goal to his name, but he has had twenty shots at goal so far this season with fourteen on target (the 7th highest shots on target for a player this season)

- Aston Villa continued to slide down the Premier League table with a 2-0 defeat against Spurs, a result made all the worse because of injury to young defender Joe Bennett

- Another young player for Villa, 23 year old defender Cieran Clark, is ranked fourth for blocks so far this season with ten

- Another bright point is that Villa’s 61.29 miles against Spurs was the second highest distance posted by Spurs in a single game so far this season

- Villa striker Brett Holman has been doing his best to win the ball back in Villa’s attacking third, having attempted more tackles than any other striker in the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index this season

- Karim El Ahmadi has been the focal point of his team this season, receiving the ball 336 times, more than any other Villa player


http://www.byfarthegreatestteam.com/posts/stats-fulhams-improving-work-rate-vs-holmans-defensive-work-for-aston-villa/?


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Re: Friday Fulham Stuff (19/10/12)...
« Reply #12 on: October 19, 2012, 03:35:13 PM »
 
Moves like Dejagah

Deadline-day signing Ashkan Dejagah is the main interview in the official matchday programme for the visit of Aston Villa on Saturday.

A thigh injury has meant the flying winger hadn’t had a chance to impress the Fulham fans since his move to SW6 - but he speaks of his desire to shine in a white shirt as he nears full fitness.

The new-look programme - available in both traditional print format and digitally - also includes exclusive interviews with Martin Jol, Ray Houghton, David Stockdale, Moritz Volz, Terry Angus and Academy starlet Patrick Roberts.

While Jol pens his regular column, Stockdale takes the Fulham 50 challenge, and former defender Volz is the subject of our Cult Heroes feature. Ex-Fulham and Villa star Houghton gives his views on Saturday’s encounter, while Whites legend Angus assesses a troubled week in the world of football.

With all the usual news and views from in and around the Training Ground, plus much more besides, including the chance to win Football Manager 2013, the official Fulham programme really is the essential matchday accessory. Priced £3.50, the 84-page publication is available from various sellers on Stevenage Road from two hours before kick-off. Fans can also order copies online by heading here.

From this season, Fulham have also launched a brand new digital edition of the programme, giving you access to exclusive video content, interviews and highlights from 9am on every home matchday.

This week’s content includes video interviews with Bryan Ruiz and John Arne Riise, plus highlights from recent Under-18 and Under-21 fixtures. Click here for more details of how to download your digital edition.


http://www.fulhamfc.com/news/2012/october/19/moves-like-dejagah?

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Re: Friday Fulham Stuff (19/10/12)...
« Reply #13 on: October 19, 2012, 03:38:40 PM »
 
Eagles Await U18s

Fulham’s Under-18s return to match action on Saturday (11am) when they host Crystal Palace at Motspur Park.

After winning their first four games of the new campaign, the Whites have lost their last two matches, the most recent an unlucky 2-1 defeat at Chelsea.

Palace, meanwhile, are without a win from their opening six games and were defeated 4-3 by Fulham in a seven-goal thriller earlier this season.

That day, Moussa Dembele scored a hat-trick, with Cauley Woodrow also on target from the penalty spot.

Please note that the home game versus Manchester City was the last match that could be attended by Fulham Members. Only Season Ticket Holders are now allowed entry to matches.


http://www.fulhamfc.com/news/2012/october/19/eagles-await-u18s?

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Re: Friday Fulham Stuff (19/10/12)...
« Reply #14 on: October 19, 2012, 03:39:41 PM »
 
Fulham v Aston Villa: A look at the opposition

It's not quite Fortress Fulham, but two resounding wins for the Cottagers from their first three home matches of the season show what a tough task Villa face tomorrow.

Although Martin Jols men lost 2-1 to champions Manchester City at Craven Cottage, they scored eight goals in victories over Norwich and West Brom in front of their own fans.

Fulham kicked off by sticking five past the Canaries without reply before beating the Baggies 3-0 in West London.

They are currently ninth in the Premier League table with 10-points from their first seven games after scoring 15 goals and conceding 11.

In recent seasons, Fulham have been stronger at home than on their travels and to date this campaign is not much different.

They lost 3-2 and 3-0 at Manchester United and West Ham respectively, although in their most recent away games they won 2-1 at Wigan and drew 2-2 at Southampton.

Jol has made light of losing Clint Dempsey to Tottenham on transfer deadline day, replacing last seasons 23-goal striker with Dimitar Berbatov before the window closed.

Berbatov has been an instant hit at Craven Cottage since opening his account by scoring a winning double on a dream home debut against West Brom.

But the Bulgarian international has missed the past two matches after picking up hip and thigh injuries in training.

Berbatovs comeback was originally pencilled in for tomorrow, but Jol is yet to confirm whether or not the former Manchester United enigma will be available to face Villa.



Read More http://www.birminghammail.net/birmingham-sport/aston-villa-fc/aston-villa-news/2012/10/19/fulham-v-aston-villa-a-look-at-the-opposition-97319-32063334/?#ixzz29kvsUaJE


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Re: Friday Fulham Stuff (19/10/12)...
« Reply #15 on: October 19, 2012, 03:41:40 PM »
 
10 Years At The Top

To celebrate Saturday's home fixture against Aston Villa, we're running a special promotion at our Fulham Road and Craven Cottage Stores.

Purchase any adult replica Home, Away or Third Shirt and claim your copy of 10 Years at the Top absolutely free!

This fantastic offer runs until 12pm on Saturday 20th October, while stocks last.

Don't miss out on your chance for a free copy of this outstanding collector's book, worth £35!



http://www.fulhamfc.com/news/2012/october/19/matchday-retail-offer?

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Re: Friday Fulham Stuff (19/10/12)...
« Reply #16 on: October 19, 2012, 03:44:06 PM »
 
Stan's battle helps Steve Sidwell come through his own gloom
Fulham midfielder nearly quit the game but says mate Petrov's illness puts his own worries into perspective


Roaring back: Steve Sidwell (left) has sparkled for Fulham this season after overcoming a career-threatening hernia problem

Steve Sidwell knows all about the dark places a footballer visits when he is faced with a real threat to his health and career.

Fulham’s combative midfielder today revealed how he feared his playing days were over when he suffered severe complications following a hernia operation last season.

“It was tough, very tough,” he said. “I even sat down with my advisors and got the paperwork out to look at what circumstances I’d be in if I had to throw the towel in. That was a really bad time.”

Dark days indeed. Yet Sidwell is also the first to acknowledge there is always somebody worse off than yourself and when the 29-year-old Londoner lines up against former club Aston Villa at Craven Cottage tomorrow he will spare a special thought for his close friend Stiliyan ‘Stan’ Petrov, who is battling acute leukaemia.

The two men were team-mates at Villa Park and Sidwell said: “Stan’s illness puts everything into perspective. What I went through last season doesn’t even come into it.

“I remember the phone call I received when he was first diagnosed. I was playing golf and I actually walked off the course. I couldn’t play on. Until you’ve met Stan you wouldn’t believe how nice he is and what a gentleman he is. Everybody loves him.

“When I came off the course I knew his phone would be busy so I just sent him a text saying I wished him all the best and to get in touch if he needed anything. The first text he sent back read, ‘I’ll beat it’.

“That’s the sort of person Stan is. He’s a strong character, he’ll get through it.”

Indeed, Petrov is now in remission but will play no part in tomorrow’s match. As for Sidwell, the chances of him ever wearing a Fulham shirt again seemed unlikely as last season drew to a close.

Sidwell arrived at the Cottage in January 2011 by way of Arsenal, Reading, Chelsea and Villa. Then manager Mark Hughes saw him as the kind of midfielder every side needs, a tireless worker prepared to defend tenaciously and then gallop the length of the pitch to support the attack and chip in with the occasional goal.

All was going well until February when Sidwell underwent what should have been a routine hernia operation.

He recalled: “It turned into a groin problem and that became an abdominal problem. It was an absolute nightmare for me.

“We went to see specialist after specialist but no one could put their finger on what was wrong. There was just no light at the end of the tunnel.

“Playing football is something I’ve done since I was five, I didn’t know anything else and it was scary. The last operation I had was near enough going to be the last throw of the dice. Fortunately, it worked.”

Like Petrov, Sidwell has received vital support from good people, in his case Fulham’s medical staff who helped him come through his rehabilitation, and his wife, Krystell, who was “a driving force for me staying strong”.

Strong enough to score two goals while appearing in all eight of Fulham’s games so far this term and to have formed a solid defensive midfield partnership with Chris Baird.

That bond has gone a long way towards easing the problems presented by the departures of Clint Dempsey, Mousa Dembele, Danny Murphy and Dickson Etuhu, and a long-term injury to Mahamadou Diarra.

While striker Dimitar Berbatov is set to return from injury tomorrow, Fulham boss Martin Jol will almost certainly have to make do without Bryan Ruiz, who came back from international duty with Costa Rica carrying a thigh complaint.

But Jol can count on Sidwell, even if the player himself is still not satisfied with his game.

“I’m happy that I’m playing but I can do much more,” he said.

Typical of his commitment, Sidwell has volunteered for extra training, explaining: “After our last game at Southampton I pulled the fitness coach to one side and said I needed to do some more stuff.

“We had a few days off during the international break but I came in every day, cracked on, and I’m feeling fitter and stronger.”

Having come so close to seeing his career curtailed and knowing it could be a while before Petrov laces up his boots again, some overtime is hardly an irritation.

Sidwell said: “I’m just thankful to be on the football pitch.”


http://www.standard.co.uk/sport/football/stans-battle-helps-steve-sidwell-come-through-his-own-gloom-8218299.html

Offline whitejc

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Re: Friday Fulham Stuff (19/10/12)...
« Reply #17 on: October 19, 2012, 03:59:35 PM »
 
Ireland returns but doubts over Villa trio for Fulham clash

Aston Villa midfielder Stephen Ireland will return to the squad for tomorrow’s Premier League clash at Fulham after missing three games with a broken bone in his arm.

Villa boss Paul Lambert will assess the freshness of goalkeeper Brad Guzan and midfielders Brett Holman and Karim El Ahmadi after gruelling midweek trips back from playing for the United States, Australia and Morocco respectively.

Full-back Joe Bennett is expected to be fit after suffering a leg injury during the 2-0 defeat at Tottenham a fortnight ago - but central defender Richard Dunne (groin) remains a long-term casualty.

Provisional squad: Guzan, Given, Lowton, Bennett, Lichaj, Clark, Vlaar, Baker, Herd, El Ahmadi, Ireland, Westwood, Bannan, Delph, Holman, N’Zogbia, Bent, Agbonlahor, Benteke, Bowery, Weimann, Burke, Johnson, Williams.



http://www.london24.com/sport/fulham/ireland_returns_but_doubts_over_villa_trio_for_fulham_clash_1_1662298


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Re: Friday Fulham Stuff (19/10/12)...
« Reply #18 on: October 19, 2012, 04:01:22 PM »
 
Fulham's Richardson eyes Aston Villa start


Kieran Richardson

KIERAN Richardson hopes his goalscoring cameo at Southampton before the international break was enough to earn him his first home start against Aston Villa tomorrow.

The former Man United and England midfielder came off the bench at St Mary’s to score his first goal for Fulham.

It looked like being the winner until he marred his afternoon by giving away the free kick from which Saints grabbed a last-gasp equaliser.

"I’m really happy that I’ve got my first goal now and hopefully it’s the first of many," Richardson told the Chronicle.

"It’s always good to start well with a new club and my first goal will help. Hopefully I did enough to impress the manager and I can start against Aston Villa, make my full home debut and hopefully crack on from there.

"I want to show the fans what I can do. I’ve been working hard with the physios and the fitness coaches, getting my levels up.

"I was disappointed with my first showing at West Ham. Maybe it was a bit too soon for me because my fitness wasn’t up to the right levels."

Richardson believes Villa are ideal opponents both for him and the Whites right now, and says they are the type of team Fulham need to beat to fulfil their ambitions.

"They’ve been going through a bit of a tough spell, so hopefully we can get at them," said the 27-year-old. "

At home we’re very, very strong. We want to improve on last season and you’ve got the players here to do that.

"You want to be pushing for that Europe spot. Obviously we don’t want to get carried away with ourselves, but with the team we’ve got, we can do anything we want."



Read More http://www.fulhamchronicle.co.uk/fulham-fc/2012/10/19/82029-32059528/?#ixzz29l1JYmSk

Offline whitejc

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Re: Friday Fulham Stuff (19/10/12)...
« Reply #19 on: October 19, 2012, 04:03:07 PM »
 
Fulham star reveals ambitious target ahead of Aston Villa clash


Fulham's Kieran Richardson runs away to celebrate scoring the second goal at
Southampton. Photo credit: Adam Davy/PA wire


Fulham winger Kieran Richardson is desperate for the Whites to improve on their ninth placed finish last season.

Martin Jol’s side finished with 52 points, level with Liverpool and 12 behind sixth-placed Chelsea.

And the former England international has revealed that that is the primary target before looking to close the gap on the top six.

“You want to improve on last season,” Richardson said.

“With the players we have in the dressing room we can do well.

“The standard is very high in training. Defensively we are very very strong.

“We want to be pushing for a Europe spot. We can do anything we want.”

The Whites host Aston Villa tomorrow and Richardson is desperate to be involved in his first game at Craven Cottage.

“I hope to be involved,” he explained. “Hopefully I can impress the manager and show the fans what I can do.

“Aston Villa are going through a tough spell at the moment. But we are the home team and with the players we have we can do anything.”

Last time out, Richardson scored his first goal for the club against Southampton but he has already moved on from that strike.

“I’m not one of those players who dwell on things,” the former Sunderland man admitted. “I’m looking forward to Aston Villa.”

With England lacking presence on the left wing against Poland some good performances by the 27-year-old could catapult him into Roy Hodgson’s plans but that is not in Richardson’s plans at the moment.

“I want to play well for Fulham first,” he said. “Any player wants to play for their country.”



http://www.london24.com/sport/fulham/fulham_star_reveals_ambitious_target_ahead_of_aston_villa_clash_1_1660488