Author Topic: Thursday fulham Stuff - 25/02/21...  (Read 783 times)

Offline whitejc

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Thursday fulham Stuff - 25/02/21...
« on: February 25, 2021, 12:13:21 AM »
Reed versus Lemina: the definitive breakdown
In his debut piece, Dan Cooke uses the numbers to answer the question on all our lips: Lemina or Reed?

Harrison Reed or Mario Lemina? It’s a question Scott and his coaching team will have asked themselves most weeks. Harrison has been a real fan favourite since his loan spell last season; his dynamism in midfield and his propensity to get stuck in meant we were all desperate for him to return on a permanent deal. Whereas there was some scepticism around Lemina’s signing on loan. There were doubts from some as to whether we needed him, particularly due to his supposed weak mentality. Thankfully, Mario has put in some very impressive performances this season in the heart of our midfield and proved some doubters wrong. However, over the course of the season it’s definitely been an either/or situation, with one of the two playing alongside Zambo, with the other on the bench.

They both share similar qualities and I was interested to see whether there was anything in the data to support Scott’s decision to more frequently favour Harrison Reed. Due to Harrison playing more minutes, I’ve adjusted the stats to represent their output per 90 minutes.

Passing
Passing felt like a good place to start. Overall, they have very similar passing statistics, perhaps unsurprisingly as they fill the same role in Scott’s side.



Harrison plays slightly more passes than Mario, but we can see their pass completion rate, as well as the proportion of their passes that are either short or long, are almost identical. Where we see the biggest difference is in the nature of the passes. Progressive passes, in layman’s terms, are passes that move the ball towards the opposition goal. In general, this is a good thing – you want your midfielders to be creating that link from your defence to your forwards. This for me is where Harrison appears to stand out. He plays more progressive passes per 90 minutes, and in fact has played the fourth most progressive passes within our squad.

You need these sorts of players in your midfield, especially as a team that wants to play attractive football, as otherwise, as we have seen in some games, our forwards can be starved of possession. Especially when we are without Mitrovic, it’s vital that we build through our midfield as we don’t have the physicality to go route one. This is where having a midfielder like Harrison who can play passes that break opposition lines is important. This is backed up by Harrison playing more passes into the opposition’s final third. The ability to cut through the opposition’s lines and take us towards their box is how we create chances.

Dribbling and carries
There’s more to just passing though, as we’ve seen with Zambo. One of the things that he’s not just the best for us at, but one of the best in Europe at, is carrying the ball.



This is where Lemina stakes his claim. Where Harrison gets us up the pitch with his passing ability, Mario is able to use his strength and his dribbling abilities to take us up the pitch himself. Only four other Fulham players have more progressive carries per 90 minutes than Mario. He also carries the ball further than Harrison, once again showing that his style of play is to get us forward with the ball at his feet. This directness is another way to form that link from defence to attack, bringing our goalscoring threats into play.



Defensive output
Finally, a key requirement of the role they play is their defensive capabilities. Both players certainly put themselves about, and I’ve been impressed by how they have protected our backline and goal.



Overall, Harrison does seem to perform best defensively. We can all see how good he is at breaking up the play, particularly when it comes to intercepting passes and pressuring the opposition. However, we aren’t talking about huge disparities in output, with Harrison only slightly outperforming Mario. But, we’re approaching squeaky bum time this season, and those slightly better numbers could make all the difference in tight games.

One area of intrigue is that Harrison gets dribbled past considerably more than Mario does. This is where you can perhaps see the benefit of having a larger physical presence in our midfield. Harrison has that terrier spirit, trying to cover every blade of grass and it must be said that sometimes his over-eagerness can result in the opposition getting the better of him. The strength and comparative size of Lemina makes him a harder man to get past.

Who’s Scott’s Palace pick?
So, who should it be? From the data you could argue that Harrison perhaps slightly edges it but really, they have incredibly similar outputs. So why not play both?

We saw against Everton, one of our best performances of the season, both of them playing in the middle of the park. It seemed to unlock a side of Harrison Reed that we had not seen. When playing alongside Zambo, Harrison is stuck doing most of the dirty work. However, with the protection that Lemina provided him, we saw Harrison getting much further forward, playing in a very different role.



We can see how much more of the ball he saw and he drove us forward, both with his passing and his carries. His shot from the edge of the area created our second goal, a position he may not have been in if he was playing in his regular role. He was absolutely superb, and maybe his true quality is being suppressed by the more restrictive role he is usually made to play. Lemina’s numbers show that he is absolutely capable of playing that anchor role that Reed is usually entrusted with, and in that game at least, they were a beautifully balanced double act.

It leaves Scott with a dilemma. Zambo showed against Sheffield United that he might be back to his best form and Loftus-Cheek looked promising in the number 10 slot. Therefore, once again, one of Reed and Lemina will probably have to miss out. It’s a tricky decision, but as television pundit would say, it’s a good dilemma to have.



https://www.fulhamish.co.uk/post/2021-02-24-reed-versus-lemina-the-definitive-breakdown/

Offline whitejc

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Re: Thursday fulham Stuff - 25/02/21...
« Reply #1 on: February 25, 2021, 12:15:07 AM »
Spurs, Liverpool And Man City Won’t Relish Facing Us – Fulham Legend

Fulham great Sean Davis has insisted that Tottenham Hotspur, Liverpool and Manchester City will not relish facing the Cottagers in their forthcoming games.

Scott Parker’s side currently sit 18th in the Premier League table and are looking to force their way out of the relegation zone, with 13 games remaining in the season.
 
Fulham are currently on a four-game unbeaten run in the league and will be looking to build on that when they visit Crystal Palace this weekend.

The Cottagers then have a difficult set of fixtures against Tottenham, Liverpool and Manchester City, which former Fulham star Davis described as awful.

However, Davis has insisted that Spurs, the Reds and the Citizens will not relish facing Fulham, who he feels held their own against those three sides earlier in the season.

“After that [Crystal Palace], the run of Tottenham, Liverpool and Manchester City looks awful on paper, but I don’t think any of those sides will relish the idea of facing us right now“, Davis wrote in his column on Fulham’s official site.

“Anyone can beat anyone in the Premier League this season.

“We’ve already shown what we’re capable of against those sides.

“Okay, Manchester City beat us, but we should’ve seen off Liverpool, and Spurs was a good example of how we stayed in the game until an opportunity to equalise came our way.

“With the quality in our side, we’ve always got someone who can provide a bit of magic for us to score a goal.“

Both Tottenham and Liverpool have been on a poor run of form and Fulham will be hopeful of taking advantage of it over the next few weeks as they look to avoid relegation.



https://insidefutbol.com/2021/02/24/spurs-liverpool-and-man-city-wont-relish-facing-us-fulham-legend/496052/

Offline whitejc

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Re: Thursday fulham Stuff - 25/02/21...
« Reply #2 on: February 25, 2021, 12:17:23 AM »

Newcastle relegation fears, Steve Bruce future and Callum Wilson injury impact - Pitch to Post Regional Review

Sky Sports News' Keith Downie joins Pitch to Post podcast to talk Steve Bruce, Graeme Jones, Martin Dubravka vs Karl Darlow and Callum Wilson injury blow; 'Real concern from fans that Newcastle are sleepwalking towards relegation'

Newcastle are perilously placed in the Premier League relegation battle - are they repeating the mistakes of the 2015/16 season?

Defeat to Manchester United combined with Fulham's resurgence - most recently thanks to a 1-0 win over Sheffield United in a crunch clash at the bottom - means the Magpies are now hovering just three points above the drop zone.

Sky Sports News' Keith Downie joined the Pitch to Post podcast for a Regional Review to explain fears Newcastle are "sleepwalking towards relegation" and assess what the future might hold for Steve Bruce as he recalls the 2015/16 campaign that saw Rafa Benitez replace Steve McClaren - but not in time to save the club from the Championship.

Downie gives his take on a potential goalkeeping dilemma for Bruce and admits injury to Callum Wilson "could be the difference between Newcastle staying up and going down".

'Fulham run has Newcastle supporters petrified'
"I think it's fair to say that Newcastle supporters are petrified.

"Their worry has been increasing week on week as Fulham have been picking up results.

"Actually, despite losing to Manchester United last time out, they've been playing better for the last few weeks. There was a really good performance against Everton last month, a hard-fought 3-2 win against Southampton when they went down to nine men.

"They've been playing more attacking, front-foot football but it's Fulham's run that is the concern. The gap is now three points and Newcastle could be in the bottom three this weekend. That's how serious it has become. It's amazing how quickly things have turned.

"Newcastle supporters will tell you, 'Don't say we haven't warned you'. There's a real concern from the fans - and they used this term quite often - that Newcastle are sleepwalking towards relegation.

"Steve Bruce said he was "quietly confident" he would keep the side up. I do not think the Newcastle supporters have the same belief."

'Parallels with McClaren... where does Jones fit in?'
"If you look back to 2016, Newcastle supporters felt the club left it far too late to replace Steve McClaren, who was really struggling. Rafa Benitez didn't have enough time to turn things around and they were relegated.

"I think the fans are seeing a lot of parallels this season. They said for weeks that McClaren had to go but the club waited and waited and Mike Ashley dug his heels in.

"The biggest issue is who would take over? I'm not sure there's anyone who stands out who would come in until the end of the season?

"They've brought in Graeme Jones as a coach to help Bruce - there's no doubt that performances have changed since then, but you have to take into account that a week before Jones arrived, Bruce vowed to do it his own way and be more attacking anyway.

"My reading of the situation is that Jones has been brought in to help but that he's not part of the existing group of coaches - Steve Agnew and Stephen Clemence, who are already there.

"It would look like if the club feel they do need to act and feel that the situation has become irreparable, they've got Jones to step in until the end of the season. Yes, Bruce was happy for Jones to come in but it did seem interesting that he came in independently. I couldn't see Newcastle paying off Bruce and then throwing money at a new manager to come in [in the short-term].

"I've said all along, as long as Newcastle stay out of the bottom three, Bruce will stay at the helm. But it would not surprise me, even if they did slip into the bottom three, for Ashley to stick with Bruce because he has been loyal.

"The supporters think he's gambling on the short-term future of the club with Bruce and it will be interesting to see what the next couple of weeks brings."

Goalkeeping dilemma - but Wilson injury could be decisive
"The goalkeeping situation is a really interesting one. In my mind, Newcastle have two of the best goalkeepers in the league.

"Dubravka probably feels really hard-done-by sitting on the bench because he's been phenomenal the last couple of years but Darlow has been excellent since he came in when Dubravka got injured. He's grown in stature, his physique looks better. Yes, he made a mistake against Manchester United, getting beaten at his near post, but I'd be surprised if Bruce changes it.

"I think some supporters feel Dubravka is the better of the two but they're happy with Darlow. I think there's very little between them and I know Bruce really likes Darlow.

"The big blow for Newcastle has been Callum Wilson; Wilson, Fabian Schar and Javier Manquillo have all been ruled out for three months but Wilson's the big one. He's been the star man. It could be the difference between Newcastle staying up and going down this season.

"They don't really have anyone who could come in and do the same job. Dwight Gayle led the line against Chelsea but was then back on the bench against Manchester United. Joelinton came in and did ok but he's not a No. 9 and he then went off injured. Then you've got Andy Carroll, who has become something of an impact sub.

"Numbers are dwindling in the striking department and it feels like any of the other options aren't anywhere near as good as Wilson considering what he's done this season."

Will Newcastle survive?
"It's going to be tight. They've got Fulham at Craven Cottage on the last day of the season. Would Fulham be allowed to have some supporters in?

"I think they've probably just got enough in terms of the players they have; I think they should be higher in the league than they are with the players they've got. I don't buy this argument that Newcastle are a 17th-placed club. They've got Miguel Almiron, Allan Saint-Maximin, Wilson, Isaac Hayden, Jonjo Shelvey... good players. They should be, in my mind, 12th or 13th.

"The striking issue is a real concern - we'll see when he returns - but the biggest issue at the moment is the form of Fulham. They've got the bit between their teeth and they're growing in confidence.

"Bruce has said 'quietly confident'; I don't think I would use the word 'confident' at all but I think they'll probably do just enough to stay up."



https://www.skysports.com/football/news/11678/12226799/newcastle-relegation-fears-steve-bruce-future-and-callum-wilson-injury-impact-pitch-to-post-regional-review


Offline whitejc

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Re: Thursday fulham Stuff - 25/02/21...
« Reply #3 on: February 25, 2021, 12:19:51 AM »
The real relegation threat facing Southampton and why Fulham fixture run-in could be crucial

Southampton now find themselves looking at the bottom three with concern as their hopes of finishing in the top half of the table drift further and further away

Last night, Southampton boss Ralph Hasenhuttl issued a damning verdict on his team.

Marcelo Bielsa's energetic Leeds United had romped to a comfortable and commanding 3-0 victory at Elland Road when the Austrian came to address the media.

His side had battled hard during the first half but, during a poor second, they had leaked three goals.

Patrick Bamford's opener was the most important on the night with his well-placed arrowed shot hitting Hasenhuttl's players right in the heart and destroying their confidence.

Goals from Stuart Dallas and Raphinha followed with Hasenhuttl even going as far as to accuse his players of giving up during the final moments of the evening.

But that was far from his most worrying post-match admission as he went on to explain how, if the rot cannot be stopped, his side will be fighting for their Premier League status between now and May.

"We are the worst team during the second half of the season and this is absolutely right because we don't play like a winning team at the moment," he warned.

"If we don't change this, we will have a battle until the end of the season."

Southampton's start to the campaign was record-breaking as they elevated themselves beyond European contention to - albeit for a few hours only - top the Premier League table.

They did so by beating Burnley, West Brom, Everton, Aston Villa and Newcastle before mid-November, before further victories against Brighton, Sheffield United and even Liverpool on a memorable night on St Mary's back in early January.

Yet now, close to two months on, they are yet to taste victory since in the Premier League.

In the meantime, Saints' FA Cup form has been fine as they advanced on a run that has seen them dump both holders Arsenal and Premier League rivals Wolves from the competition.

But are they really in a relegation battle?

The biggest current threat to their Premier League survival, besides themselves, is Scott Parker's Fulham who now find themselves just eight points behind Southampton.

Over their past seven outings, Fulham have picked up ten points, including wins against Sheffield United and Everton.

Should they continue their current run of form, calculated over their past seven outings, the Cottagers would end the campaign on exactly 40 points, the regular benchmark to guarantee top-flight survival over a 38-game campaign

And that leaves Saints with ten points to find from the 39 still on offer to them between now and May, not an easy target to match when you have picked up only one point from a possible 24 in recent weeks.

Southampton's upcoming opponents pose big challenges with games against Manchester City, Liverpool, Tottenham and Leicester all on the horizon.

However, sandwiched between them, comes a winnable run of games that could define their season and help restore confidence in Hasenhuttl and his players.

March and April will see Brighton, Burnley and Crystal Palace come to St Mary's, as well as away trips to Sheffield United and West Brom - all while Fulham face Tottenham, Liverpool, Man City, Leeds, Aston Villa, Wolves, Arsenal and Chelsea back to back.

But if the two clubs find themselves locked in the end-of-season battle that Hasenhuttl is so wary of then Fulham's campaign-ending run-in could decide it all.

Their May schedule may start with a derby clash at Chelsea but it is followed by the visit of Sean Dyche's Burnley as they look to set up what could for them be a massive trip to St Mary's to take on Saints.

Then they will head to Old Trafford before, on the final day, they play host to fellow relegation rivals Newcastle United.

It is unlikely that Fulham will keep up their current form but Southampton must look to stop the rot fast before they are dragged into the fight nobody expected them to be in.

"We have to come back from this," Hasenhuttl added. "It is difficult. We have 30 points now and when we play like this we have no chance to win again."



https://www.hampshirelive.news/sport/football/football-news/southampton-fulham-relegation-fixture-threat-5040022

Offline whitejc

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Re: Thursday fulham Stuff - 25/02/21...
« Reply #4 on: February 25, 2021, 12:21:33 AM »
Fulham trip altered for live TV coverage

City’s Premier League trip to Fulham has been selected for live TV coverage.

The game remains on Saturday 13 March, but with a new kick-off time of 8pm UK.

BT Sport will provide full coverage of the match for UK viewers.



https://www.mancity.com/news/mens/man-city-fulham-bt-sport-63749784

Offline whitejc

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Re: Thursday fulham Stuff - 25/02/21...
« Reply #5 on: February 25, 2021, 12:23:30 AM »
Premier League may block relegation advantage Fulham hold over Newcastle United

The Premier League are set to vote after the government announced a roadmap out of coronavirus lockdown on Monday


Newcastle United's last game of the season at Fulham could be played in front of fans (Image: Getty)

Premier League clubs are set to vote on whether fans will be allowed back for the final day of the season amid fears that home teams would be given a significant advantage.

After Boris Johnson announced England's roadmap out of coronavirus lockdown on Monday, it was confirmed that up to 10,000 fans could be let into matches from May 17.

That would see fans potentially allowed to attend the last round of Premier League fixtures on May 23, when Newcastle United travel to Fulham for what could be a crucial game in the relegation battle.

Yet Premier League clubs are yet to decide how to approach the return of fans, with concerns that large attendances for decisive matches will give some clubs an unfair boost.

The Guardian report that clubs are set to vote on the issue, which could well mean that 14 out of 20 clubs need to vote in favour for fans in order to attend.

A potential solution could see pilot matches staged from mid-April as part of the government's plan to hold test events prior to allowing large-scale gathering.

That could see between 2,000 and 4,000 fans allowed to attend and remove the sort of competitive advantage having a crowd at a single match would bring.

Yet test events would hinge on how successful earlier easings of lockdown measures, such as allowing household mixing, have been.

Whilst the Magpies could well end up facing Fulham in front of fans at Craven Cottage on the last day of the season, it appears unlikely that there will be 10,000 inside Craven Cottage.

The government's announcement on Monday states that venues will be allowed to have up to 10,000 fans in attendance - but this number will also be limited to 25 per cent of their capacity.

With Craven Cottage currently having a limited capacity of 19,359 due to a new stand being built, a maximum of 4,839 fans would be allowed to attend should the Premier League allow it.



https://www.chroniclelive.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/newcastle-united-fulham-fans-relegation-19908721


Offline whitejc

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Re: Thursday fulham Stuff - 25/02/21...
« Reply #6 on: February 25, 2021, 12:25:29 AM »
Fan return would hinder Newcastle, but shouldn't be the reason we go down - opinion

Newcastle United’s final game of the season is potentially a mouth-watering fixture for neutrals and TV companies.

As it stands, 17th placed Newcastle will take on 18th placed Fulham.

There is every chance that it could turn into a relegation playoff, with the winner being rewarded with Premier League survival.

It’s the stuff of dreams for the likes of Sky Sports, who love to overhype every fixture possible.

And following Boris Johnson’s plans to come out of lockdown, there is another element of interest in Newcastle’s final game.

The Prime Minister confirmed that if all goes to plan, fans could return to stadiums from May 17th at a reduced capacity.

That would mean fans would be able to attend the final game of the season, giving Fulham a potentially huge advantage. Just like before, it would be unlikely that away fans would be able to attend.

Therefore, Fulham could face the prospect of going into a relegation playoff with thousands of fans cheering them on.

It would give them a huge advantage over Newcastle, and could likely see them get the result they need.

However, it is yet to be confirmed if the Premier League will allow fans back in stadiums this season. While it would be great for the final game, it would give teams an unfair advantage.

Survival must be guaranteed before final game for Newcastle
Regardless of what happens, Newcastle should not be in a position where they are relying on the final game of the season.

We can’t be sitting there on May 23rd, saying to ourselves ‘we would have stayed up if Fulham didn’t have a load of fans chanting ‘Mitro’s on fire”.

This season is already proving to be a massive failure. If we do survive, that will not represent success.

As Jermaine Jenas said after the Manchester United defeat, Newcastle fans will still moan if we finish 17th. You’re damn right we will, Jermaine, but that’s because it would represent complete regression from the club.

We were a Champions League club when Jenas was here, so the fact he thinks that survival is success is baffling.

It’s bad enough that Steve Bruce has dragged us into another relegation battle. But there is still time to get out of it.

If it comes to the final day and our safety is still not secured, then we probably deserve to go down.

If fans are allowed into Craven Cottage and it gives Fulham the boost they need, lucky them.

It would be harsh on Newcastle, but the damage will have been done in the previous 37 games.

With 13 games remaining, Bruce must ensure that it doesn’t come down to the final day. Don’t give yourself yet another excuse to fall back on.



https://www.geordiebootboys.com/opinion/fan-return-would-hinder-newcastle-but-shouldnt-be-the-reason-we-go-down-opinion/

Offline whitejc

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Re: Thursday fulham Stuff - 25/02/21...
« Reply #7 on: February 25, 2021, 12:26:49 AM »
Fulham: Journalist discusses Ruben Loftus-Cheek’s current form

Fulham podcaster and journalist George Cooper has been sharing his thoughts on Ruben Loftus-Cheek and his current form for the Cottagers.

This comes after Cooper recently made an appearance on the latest episode of The Athletic’s Fulham-themed podcast Fulhamish where he spoke about a range of topics concerning the west London club.

On the subject of Loftus-Cheek after his latest performance for Scott Parker’s side in their 1-0 win over Sheffield United at the weekend, Cooper had this to say about the midfielder. (14.56)

He said: “He seems to me, to be very much a confidence player and I desperately want him to get a goal. I’ve said this before, I feel like he’s become a bit of a scapegoat at times, just because everybody knows what he’s capable of and we haven’t seen anywhere near that level.

“His link-up play is brilliant, I thought he had a really good game [against Sheffield United]. I feel that he always seems so flat-footed when the ball comes to him in the box and maybe that’s just because he’s not on a scoring run and he’s not particularly on form in that regard, but he needs to be a little bit more on his toes, it’s really frustrating because a player like that he needs to be getting goals, he needs to be [confident] to be firing on all cylinders.

“But don’t think he deserves a lot of the criticism he gets to be quite honest because he links up the play well, and we look. as a unit, a little bit more sort of toothy when he is playing.”

Fulham signed Loftus-Cheek back in October on a season-long loan deal from fellow Premier League side Chelsea.

Since he arrived at Craven Cottage, the 25-year-old, who is currently valued at £21.6 million, has made 21 appearances for Fulham, scoring just one goal along the way (per Transfermarkt).

TIF Thoughts on George Cooper’s comments on Loftus-Cheek…

Given how Loftus-Cheek has failed to provide an assist for his teammates so far in this current league campaign and has only managed to earn himself a fairly uninspiring season rating of 6.64/10 for his performances, it’s clear to see why Cooper thinks that the midfielder hasn’t lived up to his full potential yet.

In our view, if Loftus-Cheek were able to go on a consistent run of good performances and pick up some goals and assists along the way, this would be a sure-fire way of getting his confidence up throughout the remainder of the season.

Despite not managing to score or provide an assist, the fact that Loftus-Cheek managed to earn himself an impressive match rating of 7.79./10 for his performance against Sheffield United, shows that he has it in him to be an important figure in Fulham’s side.



https://thisisfutbol.com/2021/02/blogs/premier-league/fulham-journalist-discusses-ruben-loftus-cheeks-current-form/

Offline whitejc

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Re: Thursday fulham Stuff - 25/02/21...
« Reply #8 on: February 25, 2021, 12:27:39 AM »
Where are the next Newcastle United three points coming from?

Newcastle United are struggling, there is no doubt about it.

With Fulham closing the gap to only three points with victory over Sheffield United at the weekend, the reality is beginning to set in…for even the most optimistic of fans.

The NUFC hierarchy seem content to gamble on Fulham’s difficult final fixtures but to most Newcastle fans, all signs are pointing towards former Mag Scott Parker’s side consigning us to the Championship.

Many Newcastle United fans are starting to envisage a scenario where that final day fixture at Craven Cottage will decide who will drop out of the Premier League. It would be even more sickening if it was one-time fan favourite Aleksandar Mitrovic, or former Mackem Josh Maja, who puts the final nail in the coffin.

Of course, Newcastle’s fate is in their own hands. If they simply at least match the results of those below them, they will avoid the drop. However, with two wins and twelve losses (all competitions) since our victory over West Brom on 12 December, many fans are struggling to see where the Magpies’ next victory, or even draw, will come.

Within Newcastle’s run-in, there are five games which could be dubbed key ‘relegation six-pointers.’

Along with the final day trip to Craven Cottage, Newcastle face Sheffield United at St James Park in the penultimate fixture of the season. Newcastle also travel to three other of their relegation rivals, West Brom, Brighton and Burnley.

Whilst hoping that Newcastle United will have guaranteed our safety by the time we face Sheffield and Fulham; few fans believe this will be the case. The issue is, as it has been for the past couple of seasons, goals. The man signed last season to provide goals, Joelinton, has struggled on Tyneside due to factors both in and out of his control.

Despite a largely disappointing January transfer window, Newcastle’s recruitment was considered effective last summer, with the signing of Callum Wilson being the most important reinforcement we have made for a number of years. His goal involvements have been a key factor as to why Newcastle haven’t been cut adrift as yet. He has a combined total of 15 goals and assists in the Premier League this season, with this form leading to calls for him to be recalled to the England squad, at least before his injury against Southampton.

With Wilson due to be on the sidelines for some time, Newcastle need to find a formula for scoring goals, and fast.

In the most recent games, against Chelsea and Manchester United, both Dwight Gayle and Joelinton have been given a chance to take the place of Wilson, with little impact.

However, the strength of the opposition played a part in this, as the quality of both of their squads eclipse that of our own. Dwight Gayle was likely to have felt hard done by to be dropped, with Newcastle as a team looking bereft of ideas during their visit to Stamford Bridge.

The only other viable options seem to be Ryan Fraser and Andy Carroll. In using Fraser, what you gain in pace you lose in physicality and aerial presence and the opposite could be said for Carroll. Perhaps then, Bruce should, as most managers do, choose personnel based on the opposition.

It is clear that 4-3-1-2 is the formation Bruce wants to stick with, and Miguel Almiron and Allan Saint-Maximin are the most dangerous players in this formation, when Wilson is not available. Almiron seems to be thriving in this formation and Saint-Maximin, whilst very erratic, can pose a threat to any defence. Having scored against Manchester United on Sunday, he will be hoping his performances are more consistent between now and the end of the season to help us beat the drop.

Bruce should therefore, alternate who plays on the right side of the three depending on the opponent. This surely would give Newcastle the best chance of accumulating enough points to escape our current predicament.

We must make do without our top goalscorer for now and pray that others take their chances and give us some hope.



https://www.themag.co.uk/2021/02/where-are-the-next-newcastle-united-three-points-coming-from/


Offline whitejc

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Re: Thursday fulham Stuff - 25/02/21...
« Reply #9 on: February 25, 2021, 12:28:36 AM »

Cottage Talk Special Episode: An Evening With Fulham Legends Gordon Davies And Robert Wilson

Take a listen to a podcast that focuses on Fulham Football Club.

This was a special episode as we talked at length to Fulham legends Gordon Davies and Robert Wilson. We asked them about the season so far for Fulham and also their thoughts on the situations at midfield and at striker for the club.


You can also listen to the show by following this link...
https://cottagersconfidential.sbnation.com/2021/2/24/22300016/cottage-talk-special-episode-an-evening-with-fulham-legends-gordon-davies-and-robert-wilson

Offline filham

  • Moritz Volz
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Re: Thursday fulham Stuff - 25/02/21...
« Reply #10 on: February 25, 2021, 10:22:58 AM »
Interesting analysis of Lemina and Reed, both are playing very well for us and Scott has a difficult decision to make as to which one starts, We are lucky to have both of them available.
Of course what would give one of them the advantage over the other is a couple of goals. Goals are all that is missing from their performances, they are not attacking players but surely they should have notched up a goal or two between them by now.