Author Topic: Monday Fulham Stuff - 15/03/21...  (Read 635 times)

Offline whitejc

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Monday Fulham Stuff - 15/03/21...
« on: March 15, 2021, 08:58:51 AM »
I have had a close look and will these 8 more points be enough to save Newcastle United?

How many points do Newcastle United need to avoid relegation?

It is a tricky one because the point marked safety, is of course also massively reliant on how rival clubs perform, as well as the results for Steve Bruce’s team.

Last week we saw an unexpected result in Fulham winning at Anfield, last night we saw Burnley winning at Goodison Park.

Though thankfully no nasty surprises at Craven Cottage as Manchester City were back to business, scoring three second half goals after Fulham had suggested they could get something with a very decent first half performance and 0-0 scoreline at the break.

Today we will have an eye on Southampton against Brighton (a 12 noon kick-off), hopefully the Saints can win the game and do one of the many favours it seems this Steve Bruce led team is going to need in order to survive.

It’s an absolutely pathetic situation that’s been allowed to play out.

Mike Ashley and Lee Charnley are nothing short of disgraceful for the way they’ve handled the club this season, no decisiveness, inaction the order of the day, just turning their heads away and hoping the whole thing blows over and a few other teams keep losing and Steve Bruce happens to win the odd game.

Will they ever honestly learn?

Steve Bruce had a terrible managerial record before he even got the job. Yet with two wins in 19 games and with the head coach coming out saying he is happy with draws at The Hawthorns and then Friday night at home against a poor Aston Villa side…and that he feels “they have done well of late,” surely you’d feel that would set something off in Mike Ashley’s head.

The damage is already done, it may well be even too late for a manager with only 10 games left this season. Even if they do survive this campaign, if Steve Bruce remains then Newcastle United will surely go down next season.

This same situation played out when Alan Pardew left, no manager was brought in and John Carver was thrown in the deep end because he was cheap and Mike Ashley and Lee Charnley felt it was fine, as even John Carver surely would do just enough and keep the club away from relegation…

Well we all knew what happened, Newcastle United in the second half of the 2014/15 season went on a similar run to what we are on now, very lucky to survive on the last day.

The damage was already done though, nobody arrested the slide, it continued into the following season with a different poor manager in Steve McClaren and got us relegated.

Throwing a bit of money around and buying one or two decent players does not guarantee your survival or progression, of course it certainly helps, but it ultimately though comes down to who the manager is.

A very good manager knows how to get the best out of what he has got, he builds a platform, then to kick on he needs the backing. We had that 20 months ago, both the platform and the quality manager to kick on. Yet thanks to another show of gross incompetence we are back to where we were in 2015, on a terrible run and looking like only a matter of time before relegation plays out.

We simply have to win at Brighton and at Burnley, as I see no points in games against Liverpool, Man City, Leicester or Tottenham.

So six games with Arsenal, West Ham United and Sheffield United at home and away games at Brighton, Burnley and last but not least, Fulham.

With those four fixtures I have written off above, it tells me we have to get a bare minimum of 10 points from the other six, to take us to what I would consider, likely safety on 38 points.

Offline whitejc

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Re: Monday Fulham Stuff - 15/03/21...
« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2021, 08:59:31 AM »
Newcastle's position is boosted by Fulham defeat

NEWCASTLE UNITED remain two points clear of the Premier League relegation zone after Fulham's recent revival stalled with a 3-0 home defeat to league leaders Manchester City.

 While Burnley and Crystal Palace eased their relegation worries with wins over Everton and West Brom respectively, Fulham conceded three second-half goals at Craven Cottage.

Their loss means they remain two points behind the Magpies, having played a game more, and enables Steve Bruce and his players to look back on Friday' night's dramatic 1-1 draw with Aston Villa with rather more satisfaction than they might have felt at the time.

Fulham continued their momentum from last Sunday’s win at Liverpool in the early stages but were quickly punished after a slow start to the second half, despite having conceded just two goals in their previous seven league matches.

“I thought first half we took the game to Man City and played very well, were very solid out of possession,” Fulham boss Scott Parker said.

“I asked the team to be very brave in terms of how we set it up and building from midfield and I thought we did it very well.

“It’s fair to say there were some sloppy goals really in the second half. Something we’ve not been accustomed to seeing really.

“Set-play goal which was poor and two individual errors that Man City pounced on and the game was over at that point really so I think that’s the residing factor from tonight’s game.

“I asked the team to be brave, I asked the team to show courage because that’s what you have to do when you’re playing a top side like Man City and try and leave a mark or at least try and have some impact on the game and I thought we did that, but there’s no denying that we made mistakes and the goals we conceded tonight were poor goals.”

Fulham started brightly and aimed to play in Ademola Lookman behind the Manchester City back-line with long balls. The 23-year-old was found by Ivan Cavaleiro inside the first four minutes and drove towards goal but he was flagged offside.

Offline whitejc

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Re: Monday Fulham Stuff - 15/03/21...
« Reply #2 on: March 15, 2021, 09:00:02 AM »
Parker backs Tosin and says Fulham will learn from mistakes which undermined first-half bravery

Scott Parker has backed Tosin Adarabioyo and his players to learn from the errors which undermined an excellent first half against table-toppers Man City.

Fulham made life very difficult for Pep Guardiola's champions elect during a first half in which they stifled City, denying them the room to impose their normal slick passing rhythms.

But they shipped three quick goals at the start of the second half and went down 3-0. One of the goals came from a set piece, the other two from individual errors, including a penalty needlessly conceded by Tosin against his former club, who felled Ferran Torres after the City player had pinched the ball off him as he dithered in possession.

"It's a big learning curve," said the Fulham boss.

"Tosin's been exceptional  Like a lot of the players we have here, he's a young player, a developing player, going to make mistakes, but what will define these players and how far they go is how quickly they can learn from the errors they make.

"Tosin's made an error initially with what he tried and then made another mistake because he's desperate to make up for that error. But he's learnt quickly and he will learn quickly. He'll be fine.

"It's been the key to why we've put ourselves in this position - why you are looking at a team that's well organised. If there's been one thing we've been very resilient about it's those moments when we've had a bit of adversity or made mistakes. We've come out the other side, we've learnt, we've grown, and that's going to be exactly the same now."

Parker said of Saturday night's game at the Cottage: "I thought the first half we took the game to Man City and played very well. We were very solid out of possession. I asked the team to be very brave in terms of the way we set it up in midfield going man for man and I thought we did that very, very well.

"But then there were some sloppy goals really, something we've not been accustomed to seeing really.

"There was a set play goal, which was poor and two individual errors that Man City pounced on and the game's over at that point really.

"I asked the team to be brave and show real courage - which you have to do when you are playing a top team like Man City - and try and leave a mark or at least have some sort of effect on the game and I thought we did that, but there's no denying that the mistakes and the goals we let in tonight were poor.

"It was frustrating for the team when you've come out for that second half with a good platform."

Bobby Decordova-Reid was missing with a hamstring injury but he has a "fighting chance" of being fit for Leeds on Friday night, but the coming days wlil tell.

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Re: Monday Fulham Stuff - 15/03/21...
« Reply #3 on: March 15, 2021, 09:01:43 AM »
Parker: ‘Silly goals’ cost Fulham

Scott Parker rued the ‘silly goals’ that gifted Manchester City a straightforward win at Craven Cottage after Fulham had made life difficult for the runaway league leaders in the first half.

A thirteen minute collapse after the break saw Pep Guardiola’s side score three times without reply and the visitors ultimately strolled to a simple victory. Parker was disappointed with Fulham’s defending and promised that he would be working hard to analyse what went wrong in those key moments, but insisted there were elements of his side’s tactical approach that he was pleased with,

“We tried to take the game to the best team in Europe and this division. I thought we did do that. We conceded silly goals in the second half, which is disappointing but the players know that. I asked the team to be brave and show a way about us to try and assert ourselves on Man City. For large parts they did very well but it was some silly goals really.

“We came out in the second half with a platform. The disappointing thing was to concede early. That 15-minute period made it a real uphill task. I didn’t want the game to pass this team by and they didn’t do that, but we struggled in certain moments.”

The Fulham boss backed Tosin Adarabioyo to bounce back quickly from his own mistake which led to the concession of a penalty, converted by Sergio Aguero, for City’s third goal.

“It’s a big learning curve for Tosin. He’s been exceptional and top-class for us. But like a lot of the players here, he’s young and developing, they will make mistakes. It’ll be down to how quickly they learn from these errors. He will learn fast; he’ll understand the differences to make and we’ll move on as a team.”

Parker remains upbeat that his side can escape the relegation zone with nine games of the season to go.

“Confidence is key to how we’ve put ourselves in this fighting position. We’re well organised and we’ve been resilient. We’ve come out the other side of these little mistakes throughout the season. We’ll work out where we went wrong and improve. We won’t write this off. We need to move on, but we need to analyse the way we conceded goals. It’ll be one we need to work out how to improve in those moments. We will look to where we need to be next which is Leeds on Friday.”

Offline whitejc

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Re: Monday Fulham Stuff - 15/03/21...
« Reply #4 on: March 15, 2021, 09:03:16 AM »
Liverpool should consider Ademola Lookman move if Fulham are relegated

Liverpool are going to have to freshen up the front line this summer. The lads have been goal shy to say the least in recent weeks and months, since Christmas they’ve been unable to hit a barn door in the Premier League. With plenty of options out there, Liverpool should consider Ademola Lookman if Fulham aren’t able to make his loan permanent.

Reinforcements needed

Liverpool have struggled since Christmas.

Jürgen Klopp’s side have been goal shy in the Premier League with injuries taking their toll and low blocks proving impossible to break down at times.

Players have been pulled out of the midfield to cover at the back, leaving the build up play disjointed.

The front line has also struggled from fatigue with players unable to be rested due to the lack of quality in depth at the club.

We need either proven quality to step straight into the starting lineup or we need a major upgrade on our bench players.

Liverpool should consider Ademola Lookman

This season saw a tough start for Fulham, the West London side seemed doomed to relegation at a point.

However, the Cottagers have mounted a strong come back in recent months.

One of Scott Parker’s leading lights has been an ex-Everton forward on loan from RB Leipzig.

Liverpool should consider Ademola Lookman over the summer.

The 23-year-old wide man has four goals and three assists this term, numbers which don’t do his influence justice.

He has earned an impressive WhoScored rating of 7.00; a strong number given his side’s league position.

Given his young age and continued progression he would make an ideal target, he’ll only get better.

Fulham face relegation

Although they’re a point from safety Fulham are still in the relegation zone.

The West London side’s strong form could see them pull themselves out of the danger zone eventually but it would take sustaining their impressive improvement.

Whilst there’s no option for Fulham to make the deal for Lookman permanent we don’t expect them to be able to do so if they’re relegated.

This would open up the door for Liverpool to pursue Ademola Lookman, he could be just what we need.

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Re: Monday Fulham Stuff - 15/03/21...
« Reply #5 on: March 15, 2021, 09:04:28 AM »
Phil Hay: Bamford injury hopefully a dead leg after Leeds striker subbed off

The Athletic’s Phil Hay has suggested Patrick Bamford might have only suffered a dead leg as Leeds United drew with Chelsea on Saturday.

Bamford, 27, was substituted off in the first half of the goalless draw at Elland Road after failing to shake off a leg injury.

Writing on The Athletic website after the game, Hay said: “Hopefully a dead leg. [Marcelo] Bielsa should be starting his press conference shortly.”

Unfortunately, Bielsa didn’t offer any update on Bamford’s fitness.

As quoted by LeedsLive, the Leeds manager said: “[Liam] Cooper is sick and Patrick, I have not asked yet.”

Available to play v Fulham?

Leeds have less than a week before their next Premier League match, which sees them travel to the capital to play Fulham at Craven Cottage.

We know all about the London curse and how that is bound to be playing on the minds of Leeds players ahead of their trip to Fulham but their task of breaking the curse will be made even more difficult if Bamford isn’t available.

Although a dead leg doesn’t sound serious, it could still mean that Bamford struggles to train fully between now and Friday. It could also mean he’ll struggle to play a full 90 minutes at Craven Cottage.

Rodrigo could replace Bamford up front but he’s had his own injury issues as of late and as we’ve seen with Diego Llorente this season, Bielsa and the medical staff might not be so keen to push players too hard who’ve just returned from a spell on the sidelines.

Bamford’s one of the most important players in this squad and being without him, even for one match, is going to be a blow.

Hopefully Bielsa and his other players can find a way to cope without the Englishman if he does miss out against Fulham.

But if it is a dead leg, at least we can be safe in the knowledge that he might only miss the one game.

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Re: Monday Fulham Stuff - 15/03/21...
« Reply #6 on: March 15, 2021, 09:06:24 AM »
Shock Brighton win on Sunday spells massive trouble for Steve Bruce in 3 way relegation contest

Recent results have made it clearly into a three-way contest for the third relegation spot – Newcastle United, Brighton and Fulham fighting it out.

Throughout the season, Brighton have been playing football that looks far too good to go down, though football can be cruel and you don’t always get the points you deserve.

Their very first away game saw Brighton cruise to a 3-0 victory at St James Park, Newcastle without a single shot on target.

However, their next 16 Premier League matches saw Graham Potter’s players pick up only one more win.#

Then six games unbeaten including wins over Liverpool, Leeds and Tottenham in January and February saw Brighton at last getting the points their play deserved.

However, failure to put the goals on the end of performances had seen Brighton undeservedly lose by the odd goal to Palace, West Brom and Leicester, bang back in trouble coming into this weekend, only outside the relegation zone on goal difference.

A massive result and deserved win though on Sunday for Brighton, in a kind of high noon derby they went to Southampton and were well worth their 2-1 win.

This is a nightmare for Steve Bruce and Newcastle United.

If you were a ridiculous optimist you would maybe claim that this means Southampton have been dragged into the relegation fight as well.

Hmmm, if Newcastle United were currently in 14th on 33 points, seven above the drop zone, there is no way Steve Bruce would be accepting NUFC were in danger of relegation.

Brighton have jumped above Newcastle to 29 points, one point clear.

Next weekend could for me, now very much decide Newcastle United’s fate.

If Fulham beat Leeds at Craven Cottage on Friday night (8pm kick-off), Newcastle United will be in the relegation zone.

Brighton then host Newcastle on the Saturday night (8pm kick-off).

A win for Steve Bruce and his team would of course be a massive lift, making it three wins in twenty games!

However…a draw would still mean Newcastle go into the international break in the bottom three, below Fulham on goal difference and below Brighton by a point.

However, if Fulham and Brighton won, that would be Newcastle a point behind the Cottagers and four behind the Seagulls.

For me, Brighton would be all but out of relegation trouble, or at least well on the way.

Newcastle with nine games remaining and a tough tough schedule, with in reality, only Fulham a real possibility of catching and overtaking, to send Scott Parker’s team down instead of Newcastle.

After the international break, Newcastle face Tottenham (H), Burnley (A), West Ham (H), Liverpool (A), Arsenal (H), Leicester (A) and Man City (H).

Six of them with varying hopes still of Champions League / Europa League places, whilst Burnley will surely see Newcastle at home as the perfect opportunity to stretch even further away from the relegation zone.

By the time we get to Sheffield United at home and Fulham away, the final two NUFC fixtures, the game could already be up.

What is Mike Ashley going to do if next weekend ends up as laid out above? Will he do anything?

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Re: Monday Fulham Stuff - 15/03/21...
« Reply #7 on: March 15, 2021, 09:08:37 AM »
Five Thoughts: Fulham 0-3 Manchester City
Fuelled by superstition, Fulham lined up against Manchester City with the ambition of withholding Pep Guardiola’s runaway league leaders but, as the narrative indulgently scripted a routine 3-0 victory for the Citizens, perhaps Scott Parker will bin off that ghastly quilted overcoat of his and start afresh on Friday evening.

We could see this coming and we shouldn’t give a single toss. The Premier League title belongs to City, anything other than a confidence-denting drubbing’s a bonus and with nine games left, we can get back to business on the training field and set our sights on Leeds United, the world’s greatest outfit, with invaluable lessons learnt from a forecasted defeat that will undoubtedly jolt us back into actuality. We’re 2 points adrift, choppy waters have been traversed, safety is still very much attainable and this result does not change a thing.

Calling For Perspective
A narrow, unjust loss against Tottenham Hotspur, a historic victory at Anfield and a fully expected defeat at the hands of Europe’s finest. Forgive me, but three points from three extremely treacherous encounters is, well, an outstanding return for a club teetering on the brink or safety and relegation, no? Losing 3-0 to a Guardiola set-up that was fervently determined to get back to winning ways is not a cause for concern, no team on the continent enters proceedings with the intention of running riot, so why would it be any different for Parker’s Whites? We recognised the gravity of the encounter, we sized up our guests, we lasted 45 minutes and, ultimately, we succumbed to the division’s deadliest squad bar none. 2 losses in 8 with 5 goals conceded, poo happens, a defeat by more than a 1-goal deficit was overdue but for the most part, I’d say we gave a very positive account of ourselves and we should only channel this minor setback constructively. ‘Sobering’ is an adjective that’s been thrown around to summarise our 13th loss of the campaign, it indicates that we should have mounted a fiercer test but all things considered, with our sensible caps on, is that assessment fair? That was the exact definition of a “free hit” game, beating City was wildly unrealistic and we had to suck up and accept that on this occasion, we were going to be subordinate.

Circumstantially, we met a fixated City that were also wary of our upturn in form. Kevin De Bruyne and Raheem Sterling, amongst other intimidating mainstays, may not have been in contention but the personnel Pep fielded were still capable of mass destruction. The opening 15 minutes of the second half were frantic, it spelled imminent peril for the hosts and we couldn’t dampen City’s methodical press. Of course, following an outrageously stubborn, secure first-half showing, the way in which we discarded our composure after the interval was unsavoury, Parker’s men usually navigate the second 45 minutes obstinately although for 5/6ths of the game itself, our modus operandi was resistive and unaccommodating. City have only lost 3, they’ve set and broken records and in all honesty, I’m satisfied with our resolve in the aftermath of an unceremonious capitulation. At 1-0 down, let alone 3-0, maximum points belonged to the Citizens, there’s no denying that, and of game’s of a similar narrative, Pep’s boys put 5 past West Bromwich Albion, 4 past Wolverhampton Wanderers and 3 past Spurs. City’s victories are not discriminative, an opposition’s league standing or reputation is irrelevant and we, at the foot of the table, escaped a potential demolition with our identity, and goal difference in comparison to those around us, intact. It’s a very small wake-up call, however it’s certainly not an extraordinary result, if anything, it’s a predictive defeat that subsequently restored the equilibrium for both parties.

Devising Our Downfall
We cannot kid ourselves here, though. City were going to manufacture deadly routines and they were going to work Alphonse Areola’s goal mouth incessantly, and if Fulham had any shred of hope of surviving the visitors’ inevitable onslaught, focus and composure at the back would’ve been paramount. The Whites’ defensive line’s been a genuine credit to the top-flight since the turn of 2021, mistakes have been sparse and connections have flourished but at some point, against elite opposition given the manner in which we persist to play out from the back, self-inflicted blunders will occur and for two of the Sky Blues’ goals, we only have ourselves to blame. Joachim Andersen was thrown under a bus by Ivan Cavaleiro, the Dane couldn’t gather the winger’s suspect pass across the back and Gabriel Jesus pounced on the loose ball to round off the visitors’ second. City’s third, a penalty, was soft, but in that situation, the slightest of contacts would be enough for Ferran Torres to tumble. Why Tosin Adarabioyo chose to butcher a Cruyff with oncoming traffic, we’ll never know, and in a vain attempt to capture his dispossessor, he staggered into the Spaniard’s path and that hideous series of events was of his own unsightly creation.

John Stones’ 46th-minute opener was unfortunate, the reborn centre-half stole a march on the Whites’ defensive line and he prodded home, but those unwelcome lapses, those all-too familiar faux pas were not directly posed by City. Yes, City probed, they harassed, although we’ve the periodic tendency to be the architects of our own downfalls, Stuart Gray and his defensive coaching staff have schemed to restructure our shape and fortitude, but you cannot discount and prevent individual misjudgements. Wistfully, irrational impulses clouded our vision from reliable sources paved the way for the visitors to rubberstamp their control, the merest of slips would be enough for them to establish an unassailable foothold and we did the dirty work for them. I’ve never been more confident in a Fulham defence, whether we employ a back three or four, we exhibit a durability that will dig us out of the bottom three but against City, gaffs were amplified and gaps, devised by our own, were duly exploited.

City Quarantine Offenders
Being incapable of bagging multiple goals has, as we know, been an issue for the Whites for the season’s entirety to date and against City, a haughty superpower with the division’s safest defensive record, forging convincing offensive opportunities would be mildly taxing and as our lethal intent in the final third’s languorous, to put it lightly, the Whites were comprehensibly cancelled out in front of Ederson’s target. Snatching a snap shot, that’s all Parker’s men could feasibly aim to achieve and other than Joshua Onomah’s charged down swipe, we really didn’t assert ourselves whatsoever. Ruben Dias has been a revelation for City since joining in the summer from Benfica SL, Stones is enjoying the season of his career and Aymeric Laporte’s grafting to return to his glowing best, and with a back three as robust and established as the Citizens, Fulham’s chances were a a rarity, at a premium, and living in the perpetual fear of over-investment moving forward, we were unable to influence the game progressively.

Ederson’s gloves remained box fresh, other than plucking broadcast crosses out of orbit, the Brazilian ‘keeper was comfortable within his 18-yard box, business as per. Reasons to be optimistic in an attacking sense were scant, possession was shared fairly – or as evenly as it could possibly be in City’s monopolisation – 444 passes were administered by the hosts to no avail and our detectable sequences were tracked and traced. Ademola Lookman began brightly along the left, shifting and scurrying inside and rotating across the front three, although Benjamin Mendy, and Joao Cancelo on the opposite flank, shadowed the 23-year-old dedicatedly and his lively movement was soon quarantined by City’s athletic wingbacks. It was a similar story for Cav’, too, but if we’re going to weigh up his respective outing, he was virtually non-existent anyway. Aleksandar Mitrovic made a late entrance, he wasn’t allowed to do much else other than play piggy in the middle so all in all, as we’d secretly anticipated, Fulham were characteristically prosaic and nobody can truly say they envisioned anything less from the Premier League’s fourth-lowest scorers.

Reed’s Hard Yards
It’s absolutely coincidental, the very reason Harrison Reed’s purred about every single week’s because the diminutive anchorman’s indispensable, a reinforcing linchpin within our spine, and operating within the most testing midfield environment he’s had to inhabit in a Fulham jersey on Saturday evening, the Venetian gold instigator delivered another esteemed personal performance. With Mario Lemina by his side and Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa roaming, Fulham intended to flood the middle of the park in order to counteract City’s multi-faceted compliment. In an ideal world, Fulham’s trio would coincide functionally, but this is earth and City aren’t mugs, so our suffocative approach didn’t quite go according to plan. Anguissa was the weakest link of the trio, the Cameroon international was visibly overawed by the game’s intensity but Reed, an observant student of the duties, thrived in the physical elements and Lemina’s efforts weren’t far off his teammate’s either. As a double pivot, their shared understanding’s favourable but our £8m summer signing’s our undisputed chieftain, churning out the hard yards for the betterment of his team.

Rodrigo Hernandez, backed up by Bernardo Silva, scrambled Fulham momentum centrally, the Spanish holding midfielder screened across City’s back three and broke with powerful bursts. City combined effortlessly within the final third, dragging the Whites into hazardous areas, overloading and identifying weak spots within our composition but Reed’s dedication was constant. The 25-year-old latched onto unattended runners, he slotted into our back four to support our structure and as City threaded passes into his vicinity, he snapped into action to obstruct and intercept. With the ball in his custody, Reed’s a practical distributor, the simple option’s regularly his preferred avenue because it’s not necessarily his responsibility to uphold invention and risk, his job’s to safeguard and regulate and he enforced his role to an incomparable degree for the umpteenth time this season. He’s consistent, he’s competitive, he’s invaluable and he made his dogged presence known amongst the visitors’ world-class resources.

Ruben’s Lost Cause
Noises from various media outlets suggested midweek that the Whites are supposedly keen to transform Ruben Loftus-Cheek’s temporary stint on Stevenage Road into a permanent stay and for the life of me, I really can’t fathom why we’d even remotely entertain such a notion. The Chelsea loanee is being shoehorned into our matchday XI for the sheer hell of it, starting up top as an auxiliary false nine epitomises how desperate the club is to incorporate his deceiving qualities as frequently as possible, and when you’ve two recognised strikers in Josh Maja and Aleksandar Mitrovic on the bench, questioning Parker’s rationale is almost unavoidable. Experimentation in the scoring department wasn’t necessary, Maja’s beginning to find his feet, and in a capacity where interchangeability’s compulsory, Loftus-Cheek fizzled out of proceedings, a passenger once again, and as a proposed driving force moving forward, his overall enterprise was neutralised.

Built like a strapping leader of the line, the 25-year-old’s striving to defraud his own reputation. With one goal to his name on the better side of SW6, RLC obviously isn’t the answer, he’s not going to remedy our goal-shy strike force so why is he trusted to front an attack that’s deprived of reward? He doesn’t make it into my chosen midfield trio, he doesn’t muscle in ahead of Lookman, Bobby Decordova-Reid, even Cav’ and Joe Bryan on the flanks, he’s a lost cause that hasn’t shown up and this squad, in our current predicament, doesn’t have space for idle has-beens. I apologise if that resonates harshly, the player that travelled to Russia with England in 2018’s being held captive by 2021’s deceitful edition and if he’s aspiring to make an impression on his parent club, to turn Thomas Tuchel’s head, he’s making a right old hash of flexing his credentials. To participate against Europe’s cream, to warrant international caps, you have to turn up on occasions such as Saturday night, City’s the calibre of opponent a player of his tendered ability’s predestined to face as a matter of routine, and for a man that’s held in such high regard by our neighbours, he’s accused of duplicity each time he takes to the turf in Parker’s system.

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Re: Monday Fulham Stuff - 15/03/21...
« Reply #8 on: March 15, 2021, 09:09:34 AM »
Fulham: Thomlinson lauds on-loan Andersen

Joe Thomlinson hosted the latest edition of the Sunday Vibes show where they graded each Premier League manager for their performances this season.

Thomlinson spoke highly of Scott Parker and his side but highlighted Joachim Andersen, in particular, for his displays in the 2020/21 campaign.

The Cottagers brought Andersen to London in October from Ligue 1 side Lyon on a season-long loan which has seen the Danish international feature 23 times in the Premier League this season (via Transfermarkt).

Fulham currently find themselves in 18th place, however, their recent form will fill them with confidence that they can climb out of the relegation zone with just nine games to go but only a one-point deficit to 17th-placed Newcastle United (via Premier League).

Speaking about Fulham, Thomlinson had this to say on their 24-year-old centre back.

He said: “They definitely look more solid at the back recently, and that is largely down, I would say, to Andersen. I do really like Tosin [Adarabioyo] as well.

“I have been seriously impressed by Andersen. He just seems to better and better, and I know that it was kind of a risky pickup, in the sense that people weren’t sure whether his reputation was as high as it once was, but he’s been unreal with [Alphonse] Areola back there.”

TIF Thoughts on Thomlinson’s comments…

Fulham have turned around their poor form in recent weeks which has seen them close the gap on Steve Bruce’s Magpies to just one point. The Whites had only conceded two goals in their last seven Premier League games until they faced the in-form Manchester City and lost 3-0.

However, the defensive turnaround has arguably been a major factor in Fulham’s fight for survival and Andersen has been played a large role in that, having started every game in their campaign so far.

Offline whitejc

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Re: Monday Fulham Stuff - 15/03/21...
« Reply #9 on: March 15, 2021, 09:10:53 AM »
Ola: Loss Won't Affect Us

Ola Aina was left frustrated by Fulham’s uncharacteristic mistakes on Saturday, but won’t be wallowing after the defeat by Manchester City.

A resolute defensive display in the opening 45 kept the likely Champions at bay, but within quarter of an hour of the restart they were 3-0 up.

“First half I felt like we really made it tough for them,” Aina told at full-time.

“We gave them a tough first half. I felt like we shut off their options, and we created a few openings of our own.

“And obviously in the second half it was a few mistakes that ends the game for us really.

“We haven’t had mistakes like that for a long time, since the beginning of the season.

“It’s frustrating that we made them because it’s not in our character, but these things happen. We’re only human.

“We have to take it on the chin and just move on. The mistakes have happened and it killed us a bit, but I feel the team still gave a good fight.”

The Whites will not be facing that calibre of opposition every week, but Aina insists that it was never viewed as a bonus fixture.

“Everyone knows about Man City, everyone knows they’re such a good side and they’ve got good depth in their squad, but we felt like we could’ve definitely got something from the game,” he said.

“If we don’t make the mistakes then we do give them a run for their money, in my opinion. But we have to just take it as it is and move onto Leeds.”

With a clear abundance of team spirit in the Fulham ranks, it seems unlikely that this defeat will hit the players’ confidence ahead of Friday night’s clash with Leeds United.

“No, no, I don’t think so,” Aina replied. “We’re raring to go, if we had Leeds in an hour we’d be ready to go. We’ll just recover well and get ready for that one.

“The position we’re in, we have to just take it game by game.

“Good or bad results, we have to take it and move on and look forward to the next one, because ultimately there’s a goal that we need to achieve at the end of the season, so we can’t dwell on bad results.”

Offline whitejc

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Re: Monday Fulham Stuff - 15/03/21...
« Reply #10 on: March 15, 2021, 09:12:37 AM »
Major shift in Premier League relegation odds as path to Championship ever clearer

Very interesting to see how the Premier League relegation odds are looking after the weekend’s relegation-related results.

Clubs with only nine or ten matches respectively remaining to decide which division they will be playing in next season.

In 69 days time Newcastle United fans will know their fate after the game at Craven Cottage, if not before then…

The weekend kicked off with both Sheffield United and West Brom already all but relegated and probably most football fans seeing four potential candidates to take the third spot for the drop.

Sam Allardyce lost 1-0 at Crystal Palace, whilst the departure of Chris Wilder didn’t produce an instant ‘bounce’ for the caretaker boss Paul Heckingbottom, hammered 5-0 at Leicester and as the joke goes – they were lucky to get nil.

Only a question of time for this pair to be mathematically confirmed as relegated, long before we reach Sunday 23 May.

As for the quartet looking to fill the remaining spot, Newcastle United were first up on Friday night.

A match low on quality from both sides saw the ball repeatedly given away and as it looked to be heading for another goalless NUFC game, Watkins’s header was deflected by Ciaran Clark past Dubravka in the 86th minute. The final action of the match saw substitute Jacob Murphy crossing for Jamaal Lascelles to get a dramatic 94th minute equaliser, Newcastle fans hoping this point may prove pivotal down the line.

Steve Bruce once again declaring it a great point, as he had done the previous week after the shocking 0-0 at West Brom, the Wolves home game as well the week before that. These were supposed to be the winnable games according to Steve Bruce, yet suddenly three draws is supposed to be cause for celebration.

Then on Saturday, Burnley deservedly won 2-1 at Everton, a massive result that arguably puts them now in the looking well on the way to safety category.

Fulham played well in the first half to keep it goalless but despite recent excellent defensive displays and only two goals conceded in their last seven PL matches, Scott Parker’s team played a part in their own downfall as Man City ran out eventual 3-0 winners.

Sunday brought a massive game to conclude the weekend’s relegation action, Newcastle desperately needing Brighton to lose. Graham Potter’s men though were the better team, winning the south coast contest with a deserved 2-1 away win at Southampton, a potential nightmare for Steve Bruce and his players as it lifted the Seagulls above the Magpies.

Now we have the updated Premier League relegation odds from Betfair on Monday after the Brighton 2-1 win at Southampton on Sunday, completed the relegation-related results:

1/200 Sheffield United

1/200 West Brom

10/11 Newcastle United

6/5 Fulham

14/1 Brighton

16/1 Burnley

25/1 Southampton

125/1 Crystal Palace

The bookies and punters seeing this relegation battle very very clearly now.

West Brom and Sheffield United are well gone, 1/200 no-hopers to go down.

Burnley’s win taking them seven points clear of the relegation zone and the bookies now seeing them safe at 16/1 to still go down.

Indeed, for the bookies, it isn’t even a case of it now being cut to a three-way fight for the last relegation spot, they see it as only a two-way one. Brighton are only three points clear of the drop and only one point ahead of Newcastle, yet they are priced at 14/1 to go down. Everybody can see that under Graham Potter the Seagulls have been playing some really good football and the feeling being, including amongst the bookies, that they will comfortably get enough points on the back of their football.

So for the punters and bookies, a simple contest between Steve Bruce’s Newcastle at 10/11 to go down and Scott Parker’s Fulham 6/5.

Next weekend though looks massive ahead of the international break.

Fulham play at home to Leeds on Friday night, followed by Brighton v Newcastle on Saturday evening.

A Fulham win would send them a point clear of relegation and Newcastle replacing them in the bottom three, with then the Brighton game looming for Steve Bruce. If everything goes wrong, next weekend would end with Newcastle third bottom, Fulham a point above and Brighton four points clear of NUFC.

As for how the bookies view those two key games, there are clear messages.

Fulham favourites at 6/4 to beat Leeds who are 9/5.

However, it is the pricing on the other match which sums up what the bookies think of the teams at the bottom, Brighton odds on 8/13 to win and Newcastle United a massive 6/1 to taste victory on the south coast. Remember, this is the fourth of the four matches that Steve Bruce had long described as the winnable ones…

The last 17 Premier League games have produced the following form for the three main relegation contenders:

Newcastle United – Won 2, Drawn 5, Lost 10, Points 11 Goals For 14 Goals Against 29

Brighton – Won 4, Drawn 7 Lost 6, Points 19 Goals For 14 Goals Against 18

Fulham – Won 3, Drawn 9, Lost 5, Points 18 Goals For 10 Goals Against 14

These are all the remaining matches for the three clubs seemingly competing for that final relegation place:

Fulham – Leeds (H), Villa (A), Wolves (H), Arsenal (A), Chelsea (A), Burnley (H), Southampton (A), Man Utd (A), Newcastle (H)

Brighton – Newcastle (H), Man Utd (A), Everton (H), Chelsea (A), Sheff Utd (A), Leeds (H), Wolves (A), West Ham (H), Man City (H), Arsenal (A)

Newcastle United – Brighton (A), Tottenham (H), Burnley (A), West Ham (H), Liverpool (A), Arsenal (H), Leicester (A), Man City (H), Sheff Utd (H), Fulham (A)