Author Topic: Sunday Fulham Stuff - 21/03/21...  (Read 571 times)

Offline whitejc

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Sunday Fulham Stuff - 21/03/21...
« on: March 21, 2021, 07:59:57 AM »


Offline whitejc

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Re: Sunday Fulham Stuff - 21/03/21...
« Reply #1 on: March 21, 2021, 08:03:13 AM »
Scott Parker admits Fulham deserved nothing against Leeds as he looks ahead to ‘eight finals’ in escape bid

Scott Parker says Fulham have “eight finals” coming up after their bid to escape relegation from the Premier League was hurt by defeat to Leeds United on Friday night.

The hosts went into a key game at Craven Cottage knowing that victory would see them leapfrog Newcastle into 17th place, with Steve Bruce’s side - who already had a game in hand - facing a crunch six-pointer away at fellow strugglers Brighton 24 hours later.

However, Fulham could not avoid a second successive loss that follows an impressive run of form, despite stand-in captain Joachim Andersen cancelling out the impressive Patrick Bamford’s opener before the break.

Bamford set up Brazilian winger Raphinha for the winning effort shortly before the hour mark, with Leeds also having two first-half goals - from Raphinha and Luke Ayling - ruled out for offside.

The win was no less than the superior visitors deserved and Parker pulled no punches in his assessment after the full-time whistle.

 "We didn't deserve anything from the game really and the best team won tonight, to be honest with you,” he told Sky Sports.

"The game started and I thought we huffed and puffed and probably were a bit fortunate to go in at 1-1.

"In saying that, the second half then comes along, we miss a massive chance just before they go and score - I think 20 seconds after and they go and score.

"But I think it's fair to say the best team won tonight."

Fulham will now be keen spectators of that clash between Brighton and Newcastle before preparing for a critical eight-game stretch after the international break that sees them take on Aston Villa, Wolves, Arsenal, Chelsea, Burnley, Southampton and Manchester United.

The Cottagers end the season with a home meeting against Newcastle on May 23.

“We've got eight games now, eight finals," Parker said.

"Teams around us, we've put ourselves in a great position - of course we have.

"Very disappointed with tonight but as always, like most times this year, this is a little blip.

"We regroup and we come back fighting like we have done for the majority of this year."

Offline whitejc

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Re: Sunday Fulham Stuff - 21/03/21...
« Reply #2 on: March 21, 2021, 08:04:03 AM »
Fulham Loss Gives Saints A Boost Ahead Of Bournemouth Game

The recent defeat to Brighton left some Saints supporters worried that the spectre of relegation was looming ominously as Fulham come up on the rails, but Friday night's result at Craven Cottage gave some breathing space.

Two months ago Saints were looking only one way and that was up the table and the FA Cup looked like being an added bonus for some glory.

But the worst run in the club's history has seen us drop down the table and slowly inch nearer the drop zone, Fulham's run of late meant that the gap closed and we sat yesterday afternoon only 7 points clear of the Cottagers.

Their home fixture against Leeds United was a big game for them , a very winnable home game and three points from that would take them out of the drop zone and for Saints we would be only 5 points above Newcastle who play Brighton this afternoon.

So most Saints supporters were hoping for a Leeds United win and they got it with the Yorkshire side winning 2-1, meaning Fulham stay 7 points behind us and have only 8 games left, one less than ourselves.

I now I would rather be in our position than theirs.

For Fulham this was a big defeat, they have now lost 3 out of the last 4 Premier League games and with only 8 left they have some tough ones left, they have to travel to Aston Villa, Arsenal, Chelsea & Manchester United, the latter two chasing a Champions League place and the former two still hopeful of a Europa League place.

Now this result is very welcome, but I can't help feel that come the end of the season we might regret it as it now pushes Leeds 6 points clear of us in the table.

But for now it is a boost for Ralph Hasenhuttl and his squad, the last thing they would want is to go into the game at Bournemouth with a feeling of apprehension about our Premier League position.

Now they can go and worry only about beating Bournemouth and if we do that we can go into the International break with enthusiasm and with Danny Ings and Theo Walcott returning for our games in April confidence as well.

The League table looks a little brighter this morning and we travel across the New Forest knowing that the League table can't get any worse for two weeks, hopefully the revival is already underway after the win at Sheffield United and will start to hit top gear now.

Offline whitejc

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Re: Sunday Fulham Stuff - 21/03/21...
« Reply #3 on: March 21, 2021, 08:04:56 AM »
Parker vows to remain calm after Fulham defeat

 Fulham boss Scott Parker says it’s vital he and and his squad remain calm and rational if they are to avoid an instant return to the Championship.

Parker’s side sunk to a dispiriting 2-1 home defeat on Friday to a mid-table Leeds United team that went into the game with just one win in five games, to consign the Whites to a second successive home defeat and keep them rooted in the bottom three.

A victory would have taken Fulham out of the relegation zone ahead of the international break and heaped pressure on Newcastle and Brighton, who sit directly above them in the table and face off at the Amex Stadium on Saturday evening.

After that encounter both the Seagulls and the Magpies will still have a game in hand over the Whites, who now have eight games to determine their fate, including daunting away trips to Manchester United and Chelsea.

Parker admitted they were second best to an impressive Leeds outfit, whose high-energy style of play caused the hosts no end of problems, six days after league leaders Manchester City strolled to a 3-0 win at Craven Cottage.

“We have given ourselves a good chance and we still have a massive chance (to stay up) and I always say to the players never get too high when we you’re winning games and vice-versa when you are losing,” Parker said.

“We understand we need to improve and get better. We have eight games left – eight massive games and we need to learn.

“We need to be very honest with ourselves and understand where we’ve fallen short and come back stronger.

“It was only two games ago that we won at Anfield and everyone was speaking so highly of us. The performance was there and the team was playing very well.

“We’ve since lost a game to the champions of this season in Man City where we put in a very good performance up until half-time.

“I get the importance of this (Leeds) game but the world we are in is very drastic. You lose a game and it’s the worst thing in the world, you’re a failure and the team are getting relegated.

“You win at Anfield and the team are amazing and you are staying up quite easily.

“I need to be very rational in my thinking, it’s never as drastic as the noise from outside is, but we know the importance of the next eight games coming up.

“We will stay rational and calm but realise we are coming to the part of the season where we know we are going to fail or be successful this year.”

Offline whitejc

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Re: Sunday Fulham Stuff - 21/03/21...
« Reply #4 on: March 21, 2021, 08:08:49 AM »
Fulham's signs to give Newcastle and Brighton hope and what they must address before Aston Villa

The talking points fom the Cottagers' defeat to Leeds United


It was a frustrating night for the Cottagers all round. Scott Parker was clearly disappointed with his side's performance, and it was a rare occasion where it didn't feel like Fulham deserved a point. As the second half waged on, despite being within a goal, it felt as though the Whites drifted further from the game, as Leeds capitalised on the home side's need to press.

Parker noted Leeds' ability to turn games into a basketball match and outside of the portion of the first half following Joachim Andersen's goal, Fulham couldn't handle that.

What was most concerning was the air of frustration that emerged. Not that players shouldn't demand more from each other, but when the call from Tosin Adarabioyo came for his team to talk more, accompanied by an expletive of course - it emphasised how little noise was coming from the Fulham ranks outside of Alphonse Areola. The Whites were taken out of their came.

Some uncharacteristic moments occured in the late stages as the usually cool-headed Andersen made an unecessary foul on the halfway line before attacking the air with his arms. He wasn't the only one searching for an answer.

Frustration will always occur when players care but the strength of Parker's team has been staying in games and sticking to their task. They cannot afford to lose this quality.

Hopefully it was Leeds' pressure and relentless pace that forced these moments rather than the pressure of the Premier League picture. Either way, Parker will need to reinforce the measured philosophy he has regarding wins and losses.

The international break

Parker acknowledged that taking the momentum of a win into the international break would have been preferred but there is no doubt that it is still time that can be taken advantage of.

Some players will of course be making interntional trips, though both Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa and Mario Lemina will only play one of their country's two international games, avoiding trips to red list countries. So a decent contingent of Fulham's first team will be able to recuperate and put in some good work together ahead of Aston Villa. The first opportunity to truly do so since the last international break in November.

That period saw Fulham return with a tight defeat against Everton and an impressive victory over Leicester with new tactics and new elements to their game. Parker has shown the ability to add new layers to his Fulham team throughout the season, even if not at the pace supporters would always hope for. The change to five at the back was a huge moment, and then reverting to four when victories were needed heralded similar success.

Manchester City and Leeds United bring unique challenges, but it just feels like the Whites just need another layer to their play once again.

Fulham have limited success against teams in the middle of the table. Their wins have came against Liverpool, Everton, Leicester, Sheffield United and West Brom who are polarising in their quality. With Aston Villa, Wolves and Arsenal next up - Fulham need to be comfortable with more control of the ball and creating chances, as well as lauching counter-attacks following structured defence.

Many will hope the injections Tom Cairney is set to undergo will aid his recovery enough to help Fulham in this regard in the final eight matches.

Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa's role against Leeds

Few Fulham players came out of last night's defeat with any credit in the court of social media. One common source of disappointment appeared to be Anguissa's performance in behind Josh Maja and then Aleksandar Mitrovic.

Admittedly the Cameroon international never looked set to unlock the Leeds defence but it rarely felt he had the opportunity in Fulham's lacking build up play.

What he did offer was an energetic, physical presence that was able to cause the away side some challenges. The 25-year-old won more aerial balls than anyone else at Craven Cottage and the number of tackles he won was only matched by Ezgjan Alioski.

The midfielder was one of few who posed a challenge to Leeds as he relentlessly closed down and harrassed in the first half and had a decent battle against Kalvin Phillips.

Since the return from the Whites' Covid-19 issues, Anguissa has often looked unable to carry his presence through 90 minutes, and he showed a hint of being able to do so. Fulham did lose his ability to dribble out of every corner in this set up, and that is something that may be needed against upcoming opposition.

Offline whitejc

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Re: Sunday Fulham Stuff - 21/03/21...
« Reply #5 on: March 21, 2021, 08:09:27 AM »
Jedi's Leeds Frustration

Antonee Robinson held his hands up and acknowledged that Fulham weren’t really at the races against Leeds United.

The visitors returned to Yorkshire with a 2-1 victory that Scott Parker admitted was deserved, after an intense display at Craven Cottage.

“Really hard to take,” Robinson summarised to “I think everyone will look at themselves and say we didn’t perform well enough. On the whole we just weren’t good enough.

“We gave ourselves a massive challenge and we didn’t combat the way they play, which is what we’ve planned to do all week, and we’ve been punished for it.

“We’ve been building up to this game all week. We know how they’re going to play, we’ve seen how they play all season.

“One thing we didn’t want them to do was run all over us, and at times I feel like we let them, and we let them dictate the game which is normally something we do so well, so it’s really disappointing.”

Leeds’ goals came from a throw-in in the first half, and a quick counter in the second, transitions that we would like to think could have been prevented.

“Definitely,” Robinson said. “I think it’s a combination of a lapse in concentration for the first goal, and then the second we got punished for not taking our chances when they go up the other end and score. It’s just not good enough.”

Parker’s mantra all season has been to not let defeats cripple his side, something that is as important now as it’s ever been.

“It’s not like if we’d won we’d have stayed up, and losing doesn’t mean we’re relegated,” Robinson said. “We’ve still got eight more games to try and get some points.

“We’ve got the international break now, some of the lads will have a bit of rest, the international lads are going to go away, and then everyone’s going to be working hard and getting focused on the next game.”

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Re: Sunday Fulham Stuff - 21/03/21...
« Reply #6 on: March 21, 2021, 08:11:05 AM »
Plymouth Argyle defender Jerome Opoku picks up two-match suspension

Opoku was booked for the 10th time in the League One campaign during the 2-0 defeat of Bristol Rovers

Jerome Opoku will be banned for Plymouth Argyle’s next two games after being booked for the 10th time in League One this season.

The on-loan Fulham defender was yellow-carded in the 38th minute of the 2-0 win against Bristol Rovers at Home Park.

Opoku was cautioned by referee Trevor Kettle for a foul on Rovers’ striker Jonah Ayunga during what was a physical battle between the pair of them.

There were appeals from Rovers for Opoku to be sent-off in the second half after a challenge on Brandon Hanlan.

Kettle awarded a free-kick, even though Opoku appeared to win the ball, but took no further action.

Argyle manager Ryan Lowe said: “I had a word with Trevor, to be fair, because they (Rovers) were saying ‘Get at him, get him sent-off, he’s on a yellow card’.

“Look, some people do it, some people don’t. It is what it is.”

He added “That was a great tackle (on Hanlan), he got the ball. The linesman said he got the ball.”

Opoku showed excellent self-discipline after that incident as he dealt well with the threat of Ayunga and Hanlan for the rest of the match.

Lowe went with a 4-2-2-2 formation against Rovers with Opoku in central defence alongside Will Aimson.

“I thought him and Will were phenomenal against them two centre-forwards because they are a handful for anyone let me tell you. They were very good," said Lowe.

“I’m sure we are going to be in for a challenge with other teams as well along the way, but them two were a real threat and I thought our lads dealt with them fine.”

Lowe continued: “We asked them (Opoku and Aimson) to come off them a yard because they are good players, and we asked the two midfielders to work from behind.

“So if it comes into one of the strikers Jerome or Will should stop them, and then Conor (Grant) and Tyrese (Fornah) can nick it from the front, and they did that well.

“They are just small things we have to adapt to when situations arise like that.”

Many media outlets had Opoku down for eight yellow cards in the league this season before the game against Rovers.

However, the actual figure was nine and did not include a booking he got in the 5-1 defeat at Fleetwood Town in November.

Had Opoku not been yellow-carded against Rovers he would have avoided a two-match suspension because it would have passed the cut-off point for the totting up process.

Instead, he will have to sit out the away game against Blackpool next Saturday and the visit of AFC Wimbledon to Home Park on Good Friday, April 2.

Meanwhile, Argyle kept their first clean sheet in eight games in the defeat of Rovers but that statistic was not of too much concern to Lowe.

He said: “Just the three points is satisfying really. It’s not about clean sheets and whatever else.

“You just want to win games of football, whether it’s clean sheets or not.

“If we had won the game 3-2 there would still have been the same messages, we would have been made up.

“Fortunately for us, we got a clean sheet for Mike (Cooper) on his 50th appearance, fantastic, so well done to him, and we have scored two good goals.

“But we have only got three points for it, that’s all, and we have to move on again now.”

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Re: Sunday Fulham Stuff - 21/03/21...
« Reply #7 on: March 21, 2021, 08:13:54 AM »
Premier League relegation odds now say it all – Bookies react to Brighton 3 Newcastle 0

Very interesting to see how the Premier League relegation odds are looking after Saturday night’s humiliating performance and disastrous result for Newcastle at Brighton.

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

In 63 days time Newcastle United fans will know their fate after the game at Craven Cottage, if not before then…

Going into this weekend, Fulham were third bottom on 26 points, Newcastle United fourth bottom on 28 points, then Brighton with 29 points, the latter pair both having a game in hand on Fulham.

Despite Fulham going into this weekend’s games two points behind Newcastle and having played one game more, it was Steve Bruce’s Newcastle United who were favourites to go down with West Brom and Sheff Utd, priced at odds-on to be relegated 10/11. Fulham then 6/5, with Brighton on 14/1.

After losing 2-1 at home to Leeds o Friday night, Fulham became the new favourites to go down at 5/6, Newcastle out to 5/4, Brighton big outsiders of the trio at 16/1.

Moving swiftly on from that piece of great fortune for Newcastle United, Steve Bruce and his team had a glorious chance to go five points clear of Fulham and relegation, plus rise above Brighton as well, if getting all three points on Saturday night.

Instead we got that abysmal cowardly display, appalling tactics and management, with a set of players who looked like they wanted to be anywhere but on a football pitch. It ended Brighton 3 Newcastle 0, it could have been a lot worse.

The updated Premier League relegation odds from Betfair on Sunday morning after that pathetic Newcastle performance:

1/200 Sheffield United

1/200 West Brom

8/11 Newcastle United

11/10 Fulham

25/1 Burnley

35/1 Brighton

45/1 Southampton

250/1 Crystal Palace

This is the updated Premier League table, how it looks now on Sunday morning after Brighton 3 Newcastle 0:

The picture couldn’t be clearer as presented by the bookies and punters with the Premier League relegation odds as we head into this international break.

West Brom and Sheffield United both already down, priced at 1/200 each.

Newcastle back to being 8/11 favourites and Fulham 11/10, even though Scott Parker’s team are two points behind NUFC and have played a game more.

Then Burnley 25/1, Brighton 35/1, Southampton 45/1 and Palace 250/1.

Yet amazingly, Steve Bruce on Friday was still insisting that at least six or seven other Premier League clubs as well as Newcastle are still worried that they will end up relegated in that final third spot alongside West Brom and Sheff Utd.

The thing is, the bookies and punters don’t just look at the Premier League when making their decisions, they look at the direction of travel and how teams have been performing, not just number of points picked up.

Newcastle United and Steve Bruce stick out on both counts, almost half a season and only two wins and 11 points from the last 18 PL games, seven points less than Fulham in that 18 match period and eleven points less than Brighton.

More than that, Bruce’s Newcastle have been poor to terrible in the vast majority of matches, clueless boring tactics as seen against the likes of West Brom and Sheffield United, now against Brighton as well.

Newcastle United – Won 2, Drawn 5, Lost 11, Points 11 Goals For 14 Goals Against 32

Brighton – Won 5, Drawn 7 Lost 6, Points 22 Goals For 17 Goals Against 18

Fulham – Won 3, Drawn 9, Lost 6, Points 18 Goals For 11 Goals Against 16

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

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

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

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

If Newcastle stick with Steve Bruce and his abysmal tactics and ‘style’ of play as seen on Saturday night, it is very hard to see where the next win might come from, or even the odd draw.

Looking at the games after the international break, to neutrals, they might think Newcastle could look to get something from Spurs at home and Burnley away. I just don’t see it as things stand. Hayden now out injured as well and with the likes of Shelvey and Hendrick in midfield I think every match looks daunting.

Fulham will pick up at least something I think from their next two against Villa away and Wolves at home. They also have Burnley home and Southampton away towards the end of the season, before of course the final day meeting with Newcastle.

Fulham may not pick up loads of points but as I look at it now, I can’t see them picking up less points than Newcastle United before the final weekend. At best, survival for NUFC might depend on getting a draw or even a win at Fulham on the final day. It just doesn’t bear thinking about.

That final match comes 11 days after the two year anniversary of Rafa Benitez’ final Newcastle match, NUFC hammering Fulham 4-0 at Craven Cottage with a massive following that day in London enjoying the sunshine, many of them getting to the match via a cruise up the Thames. There may well be sunshine on 23 May but there won’t be any Newcastle fans at Craven Cottage and instead of boats full of happy Geordies sailing up the Thames, it is difficult to see anything other than Mike Ashley sinking this ship for what will be a third time in Newcastle’s last 11 PL seasons.