Author Topic: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (17.02.10)  (Read 9920 times)

White Noise

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (17.02.10)
« Reply #20 on: February 17, 2010, 11:10:39 AM »

Rush for Champions League riches may kill the golden goose

It should come as no surprise that proposals for a play-off to decide the Premier League's fourth Champions League place have been largely well received by those clubs with most to gain.
By Paul Kelso, Chief Sports Reporter

Published: 7:30AM GMT 17 Feb 2010

Extending European promise down to seventh in the League would undoubtedly enhance opportunity for those clubs currently concerned only with avoiding a relegation scrap.

It would also significantly increase interest in mid-table at the fag end of the season, particularly now that the Europa League has become a burden rather than an incentive.

 Harry Redknapp was ambivalent last May when Tottenham missed out on seventh place by two points. You can bet the manager will be less sanguine were the prize a trip to the San Siro rather than an endurance test against Europe's also-rans.

The knockout element would also make for compelling television, with a three-game play-off series worth upwards of £15 million to domestic broadcasters already paying £4.5 million a game for regular season matches.

At £750,000 per club, it is not the general good that is motivating those clubs in favour. Rather, it is the prospect of a knockout shot at Champions League riches currently beyond the reach of perhaps two-thirds of them.

Uefa argue that its competition contributes less than 15 per cent of English club's revenues, but Manchester United earned £33 million for reaching last season's final and Chelsea £30 million for getting to the semis, huge sums to mid-ranking clubs.

The League will add more details to its proposal at a meeting next month, but if play-offs are approved it will say much about the ambitions and financial imbalances of clubs in a League where finances have never been so closely scrutinised.

It is generally accepted that no more than five clubs – the big four plus Manchester City – harbour genuine prospects of winning the title with perhaps Spurs, Aston Villa, Everton and Sunderland possessing the resources to challenge for a Champions League place.

For the rump, each season is a battle for mid-table security, with the battle to avoid a relegation scrap a major contributor to the financial stresses felt.

With two-thirds of the League ruled out of the title race at the start of each season it is easy to see why the play-offs appeal. They offer the best chance of bridging the divide. Perversely, in a League predicated on elitism, seventh may soon represent the pinnacle of achievement for two-thirds of its members.

While there is a will for play-offs, finding a way remains problematic. The League is understood to be working on plans to play three games – two semi-finals and a final – in a week, but a clash with other competitions seems inevitable.

Move the season back a week and it clashes with the Football League climax.

Play the semi-finals midweek before the FA Cup final, with the final a week later, and they would intrude on the build-up to the Wembley showpiece as well as disrupting preparations for a club also in the Champions League final. Wait until after the European finale and the teams will have had a fortnight with no football.

There is also a strong counter-argument in favour of elitism that the big four clubs can expect to make. The fourth Champions League place is not in the gift of the League, but rather is dependent on English teams succeeding in the competition and boosting the coefficient that governs entry.

By admitting teams from lower down the league England risks reducing the overall level of European performance, lowering the coefficient and eventually losing the fourth berth.

It may be a risk the majority of clubs are willing to take for a share of the Champions League pie.

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (17.02.10)
« Reply #21 on: February 17, 2010, 11:12:13 AM »

Pearce Slays Stanley But Sincil Stank

West Ham legend Ian Pearce has been waiting to be the hero ever since his arrival in Lincolnshire. We got to see a last gasp winner from the cult hero who wears the number 13 shirt last night against Accrington as Pearcy rammed one right up the fates. We also saw further evidence of the emergence of an elusive Sincil Bank Goal machine from Glasgow Rangers, Lennon the red, on a night that saw the Imps escape by the skin of our teeth. For 80 minutes we`d had it and those with fancy mobiles were Googling a blue Square Ground guide 'Apple APP`. Yep we were that bad and that close. But football being football two late smash and grab goals ensured the kebabs burgers and fish suppers went down well.

The Imps got out of jail against Accrington last night with a last gasp own goal giving us an unlikely and in fairness ill deserved win. That said we will take given it could change the cause of our history after a pig of a 125th centenary season. When Accrington Stanley come to Sincil Bank N-I-N-E places above the Imps and T-O-Y with us in spells, something is dramatically W-R-O-NG. The introduction of Fulham midfielder Matthew Saunders, for Oakes on 53 ensured we at least started to compete in midfield, an area that despite a cast of thousands coming through this club, and the fact that we have 5 playing there each week, we cannot win a second ball to save our football league lives. Though Sutton has tinkered with almost 20 players, Jacko`s Rob Burch with another 4 vital saves last night, has been the instrumental factor in keeping us up.

Accy deserved to win this comfortably and should have had 2 or 3 with Miles getting booked for a penalty shout - exactly the same as Saturday`s and in the same position, but we got the rub of the green this time. It was not the forwards night with a full stretch Burch making a massive full length save as the Imps limped through the second half as Saunders began to change the face of the midfield with Kerr happy to have some help at last. Am I alone in thinking we have not learned that in order to play this game you have to win it first? The rose tinted brigade won`t like this but we were absolutely dire for the vast majority of this game and Accrington thoroughly deserved the points.

Keeping this short and sweet - for all the good news came in the last 7 minutes - to allow us to go to Grimsby heads held high, the Imps came back from the dead. In the 83rd minute Steven Lennon the goal machine, now 3 in his last 3 starts in all fixtures swept in from 12 yards following a low ball from Drew Broughton who had done well for most of the evening. He should deservedly get the assist but Lennon should get the freedom of the City for an unlikely goal at just the right time, LJL may try to claim something but in reality his keeping out of the way was the best policy. The Imps drove forward - the spirit was willing though the style and content suggested only a fluke was going to give us the three points we really needed having failed to perform against any of our lowly peers in 2010. It came after Andersons hopeful though wayward punt found Pearce who has been aching to become a hero since his arrival. His diagonal grass cutting cross come shot into the crowded penalty area cannoned off Darran Kempson before hitting the sodden turf and trickling over the line with keeper Dunbavin unable to keep it out.

Unfair but we will take it. Who`s off to Grimsby to gloat or have more teeth extracted depending on your perspective?

Lincoln City
1 Burch 22 Adam Watts 33 Baker (Pearce 36) 38 Anderson 7 Oakes (Saunders 53) 11 Kerr 16 Lennon 25 Hughton 34 Herd 35 Gilmore (John-Lewis 64) 15 Broughton
20 Musselwhite, 2 Green, 6 Hone, 13 Pearce,19 Clarke,39 Saunders,14 John-Lewis

Goals Lennon 83 Kempton (og) 90+1

Accrington Stanley
25 Dunbavin 5 Kempton 12 Edwards 15 Winnard 26 Lees 6 Procter 11 Grant 14 Ryan 17 McConville 7 Miles 19 Symes
Yellow card - Miles
1 Bouzanis, 20 Murphy, 31 Flynn, 16 Turner, 18 Mullin, 24 King, 9 Kee

Goal Grant 30
Ref: Mr Shoebridge
Crowd: 2,779 (110 visitors so 2679 Imps were tempted by £1 a Kid)

Possession Lincoln City 52% Accrington 48%
Shots On Lincoln City 6 Accrington 5
Shots Off Lincoln City 9 Accrington 12
Corners Lincoln City 4 Accrington 5
Fouls Lincoln City 16 Accrington 13

White Noise

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (17.02.10)
« Reply #22 on: February 17, 2010, 11:14:34 AM »

Play-off idea could do more harm than good

By Dale Johnson

February 17, 2010

When Aldershot FC became the first ever winners of English football's play-offs in 1987, the competition was treated with much scepticism by both clubs and supporters.

After spending a century with automatic promotion and relegation, the decision to give other clubs the right to move up a division, when they had not earned it over the course of a season, seemed absurd.

Today, the play-offs are very different. A welcome part of the Football League calendar, it gives many clubs who would never have a prayer of playing at Wembley the chance of their big day out. Very few would vote to scrap them.

From their humble beginnings as a promotion/relegation play-off, which saw the team in the final relegation place from one division play three from the division below with a two-legged final, the end-of-season competition has evolved into a straight play-off between the four sides directly below the promotion places in a given division.

Granted, it probably wasn't until the play-off finals moved to a one-legged Wembley final in 1990 that they finally began to capture the imagination of the fan. A certain Dion Dublin, then of Cambridge United, was the first player to score in a Wembley play-off final as they beat Chesterfield 1-0 in the old-Fourth Division showpiece in front of 26,404 supporters.

In recent years, the Football League powerbrokers have been more eager to see the play-offs expanded. In 2003, plans were afoot to make the play-offs a six-team affair, with an advantage given to the team which finished the league season highest.

It was an attempt to copy rugby league's Super League play-offs and was the brainchild of Phil Alexander, the chief executive of Crystal Palace. Although it was approved by the Football League clubs, pressure from both the Premier League and the Football Association saw the idea thrown on the scrapheap.

Seven years on, and the most radical idea yet for play-offs in the English leagues is set to be put before Premier League chairmen. Not since 1988, when Middlesbrough beat Chelsea 2-1 on aggregate to win promotion to the top flight and send the west London club into the second tier, has the top flight had any involvement in the play-offs.

The suggestion that the final Champions League place - which confusingly enough earns a place in the European play-off round - could be decided by a play-off which mirrors that of the Football League has been met with a mixed response. It's been far better received than the embarrassing "39th Game" fiasco which threatened to do irreparable damage to "The Brand" of the Premier League around the world and in this country.

Of course, there is still the chance that the ££ signs could lead the Premier League to use the play-offs as a way of resurrecting the "global game" idea, but again it is one which would only serve to further alienate the fan base. The whole proposal will cause enough headeaches without the added complexity of holding the match overseas.

There are far more questions than answers right now, with considerations for international championship years, especially a World Cup year like this one, leaving very little room for manoeuvre. Exactly how you could fit a two-legged semi-final and a Wembley final into the schedule is anyone's guess.

Take this season as an example, with the Champions League final on May 22, the last game which FIFA allow to be played by top flight clubs, paving the way for World Cup preparation. And with the Premier League's regular season due to finish on May 9, plus the FA Cup final on May 16, there would be no room.

Any plans for these play-offs would not come into force until 2013 when the next television deal begins, which suggests talk of an add-on for the Pay-Per-View model unlikely. It allows time to look into the football calendar, though 2013-14 would be another World Cup season. But any team which reaches the Premier League play-offs and either or both of the FA Cup and Champions League finals in the same season would present a logistical nightmare, and surely one which would be almost impossible to plan for in advance with far too many variables.

Then comes the question of financial fairness, which hasn't been at the forefront of Premier League planning. The Football League play-offs are specifically designed so that the four teams who compete gain limited financial benefit. In fact, most of the gate receipts from all five games in each division are redistributed among the other teams in that same division. It means that by the time the clubs do their sums they will probably only make a minor gain on commercial activities and merchandise.

Would Premier League clubs be as happy to accept a similar profit-sharing scheme, with the riches of a sell-out Wembley final being spread amongst the other clubs? It would surely only be fair to add integrity and give the impression of a level playing field, otherwise the unfair advantage of the "Big Four" would, in time, surely spread to the "Big Seven".

The Champions League play-off model is not an innovation which the Premier League can claim as its own; it was introduced by the Dutch Eredivisie in 2006. It lasted for just two seasons, with clubs finishing second to fifth involved, before being scrapped. Now Holland runs just one play-off for the final berth in the Europa League.

The play-offs were poorly received in the Netherlands and the expected bumper crowds never materialised; that scenario seems unthinkable in England. Organising the play-offs, which ran for three weeks, did prove extremely difficult in a tournament year too.

Although second-placed Ajax won the play-offs in 2007, they missed out to fourth-placed FC Twente in 2008 despite being runners-up again. FC Twente then failed to get past Arsenal to reach the group stage. It proved to be the final nail in the coffin.

Some claimed the decision to scrap the play-offs in Holland was purely down to Ajax flexing their muscles after being denied Champions League football, others felt Twente's failure was a poor reflection on the league but most felt it was only fair that the runners-up got their true reward.

Granted, with discussions in England being over fourth place the same concerns may not apply. But you can guarantee that the moment one of the "Big Four" were to miss out the complaints would begin

The Netherlands also found a headache in deciding the remaining European places, especially when they were completely unaware of how many places would be on offer until the Cup winners were known, something else which created a planning nightmare.

In 2008 there was a third/fourth place play-off between the semi-final losers, Heerenveen and NAC, for a guaranteed UEFA Cup place. The same could happen in England, unless rules stated that Europa League places automatically reverted to the losing team(s) placed highest in the league.

There's no doubt that the idea will have clubs outside the establish top four salivating at the prospect of the Champions League millions, but if the Premier League is not careful then unprepared sides will drag down England's co-efficient and that fourth place will be surrendered to another league, such as the Bundesliga.

In previous seasons, Fulham, Blackburn Rovers, Bolton Wanderers, Middlesbrough and Charlton would all have been in the Champions League play-offs. Blackburn, as Premier League champions, finished bottom of their Champions League group when they graced the stage in 1995 in a group which contained Legia Warsaw, Rosenborg and Spartak Moscow.

It may seem attractive, with a top seven full of relatively wealthy and stable clubs looking to push on. But that is not always the case and in the chase for "brand enrichment" through what many consider a lottery the Premier League chairmen could actually do more harm than good.

Everton manager David Moyes, one of those who could benefit from the change, spoke cautiously about the idea rather than hailing it as the advent of a brave new world.

"While it might be quite exciting, we play 38 Premier League games and that is where you should be judged," he said. "Where are you going to fit this programme in with all the international and European games that are flying round at the end of the season?"

Sage words indeed. Sometimes there is no need to look for a solution to a problem which does not exist.

Fourth place already rewards mediocrity. Why make that situation any worse?

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (17.02.10)
« Reply #23 on: February 17, 2010, 11:16:39 AM »

Best and Worst: Fulham Premier League Kits

Author:  Jonny Abrams

Posted on:17 February 2010 - 09:43


From Fulham’s rise to the top flight under Kevin Keegan through to the brief promise of Jean Tigana, the sporadic successes of Chris Coleman and the admirable reign thus far of Roy Hodgson, Fulham have had some pretty horrible kits - a crime not unique to the Cottagers, admittedly, given the collective loss of plot apparently suffered by kit designers across the country at the beginning of the 1980s. But there have also been some pretty smart numbers amongst the dross.

Using the Premier League era as our source, picks the best and worst Fulham kits to have coloured Craven Cottage over this period…

FULHAM’S BEST: 2008-2009 home kit


A smart and sophisticatedly simple design, this is a classic football jersey as re-imagined with modern day football trends. Unnecessary lines and squiggles are kept to a bare minimum, which is a commendable decision given that kit makers seem to justify their employment by adding such nonsense. What’s more, Fulham finished 7th and qualified for Europe. Pats on the back all round.

FULHAM’S WORST: 2003-2004 away kit


This looks like the kind of pattern that psychologists hold up on pieces of card in films and ask “what do you see now?”. The labial red stripes were obviously more than one person’s idea of a nice touch, given that it actually got made, but we’re damned if we know why, how or whom. In fact, it looks rather like a huge,, failure. Why, what did you think we were going to say?

White Noise

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (17.02.10)
« Reply #24 on: February 17, 2010, 11:19:07 AM »
No Fear

Wednesday 17th February 2010

Fulham FC News

Fulham midfielder Dickson Etuhu says his side fear no team – including last season’s UEFA Cup winners and Thursday night’s opponents Shakhtar Donetsk.

The Ukrainian flyers come to Craven Cottage with an impressive reputation, especially in European knockout competition, having claimed the 2009 UEFA Cup.

Many see Shakhtar, coached by the experienced Mircea Lucescu and financed by the richest man in Europe, Rinat Akhmetov, as one of the favourites to reach the UEFA Europa League final.

But the Whites also start Thursday’s game in confident mood, with Nigerian international Etuhu insisting Roy Hodgson’s side are ready and waiting.

He told “Some people say that Shakhtar come here as the favourites, and we have to respect that they are a very good side. They’re well-organised and have some very good players.

“We know that they will be strong, of course they are – they won the UEFA Cup last season.

“But we certainly do not fear them. You shouldn’t forget that we face some of the best players and best teams in the world every week in the Premier League. And teams don’t get much bigger than Manchester United and Chelsea do they?

“It’s a different type of football, sure. But we have a lot of experience with a lot of our players playing European and international football. So that shouldn’t be a problem.”

The 27-year-old, who has featured in Fulham’s last three fixtures having missed the month of January as a result of his participation in the African Cup of Nations, is relishing the chance to show what he can do, after a frustrating season so far.

“It has been a frustrating one me for personally, although it’s good that the team is doing well,” he said. “It’s good to be back in contention again having missed games through injury and the African Cup of Nations.

“Like the rest of the team I have been working hard all week and as always we are well prepared for the game ahead. This is an exciting one to be part of and I’m certainly looking forward to seeing what Shakhtar have got.

“It is a big game, but we have shown in the past that we are more than a match for anyone.”

Don't miss a special night of European football at the Cottage on Thursday night. Tickets are now on General Sale!|

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (17.02.10)
« Reply #25 on: February 17, 2010, 11:20:09 AM »
Fulham v Shakhtar Donetsk

UEFA Europa League

Thursday, 18 February 2010

Kick-Off 20:05

On-sale Now
Tickets are now on General Sale   

 Buy tickets online|


On Thursday 18th February, Kick-Off 8:05pm , reigning UEFA Cup Champions FC Shakhtar Donetsk visit Craven Cottage in arguably the biggest ever night of football in the Club's history.

With a last 16 Europa League tie against either Juventus or Ajax at stake, the Whites will be looking for a convincing victory to take into the second leg in Ukraine a week later.

The Club is expecting a full house, so make sure you purchase your tickets now to avoid missing out on a thrilling evening.

The first 10,000 tickets have now SOLD OUT .  Ticket prices are now as follows:

Season Ticket Holders (Advance Bookings)

£15 Adults
£10 Concessions (under 21 / over 65)
£5 Juniors (under 16)
Non-Season Ticket Holders and Matchday prices

£20 Adults
£15 Concessions (under 21 / over 65)
£5 Juniors (under 16)
How to Buy
buy tickets online  - 7 days a week, 24 hrs a day. Save on booking fees by booking online*
by phone on 0870 442 1234 (option 1) - 7 days a week, 24 hours a day
in person from the Ticket Office: Mon-Fri 9am-5pm; non-match day Sat 10am-12pm
by fax 0207 384 4810 (download printable form )
by postal application to FFC Ticket Office, Stevenage Road, Fulham, SW6 6HH enclosing a stamped addressed envelope (download printable form )
* Lower booking fees compared to telephone booking

UEFA Seating Requirements
Please note that UEFA regulations mean that we are required to make special alterations to the seating arrangements for all European matches being held at the Cottage. As we have now progressed to the Round of 32 the media requirements imposed on us by UEFA have increased significantly. Where necessary we will be relocating a number of supporters to alternative seats, and we will endeavour to assign the best available seats to anyone affected. There is also a possibility that additional seats will be required therefore we may need to relocate supporters once tickets have been booked for the game. Please accept our apologies for any inconvenience that this causes.

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (17.02.10)
« Reply #26 on: February 17, 2010, 11:23:08 AM »

London: clothes counts for first impressions

16-02-10 21:17:49

On February 16 FC Shakhtar Donetsk finished training in St. Albans and moved to London itself. This means only that the first official match of this year - the Europa League clash against Fulham is to come very soon.

After the quiet English town, where there were not so much things to make bright impressions, the footballers decided to have some fun in lively and hectic London. To stroll along the streets of one of the most famous cities of the world, to watch the people and buy some souvenirs for the relatives. Fortunately, Mircea Lucescu allowed the players to have some spare time.

But here came a curious thing. Anyhow, the Miners haven’t had such experience in any city of the world. The players decided to increase the earnings of one of London’s reputable shops – Harrods. The footballers, who have money and are eager to buy a lot were certain to leave there the big sum. But...

You may be surprised, but the Miners weren't allowed to enter the shop. The staff said that the group of customers was too big and suspicious. All of them were wearing similar tracksuits. The players explained that this was the football team and they had no habit of taking tuxedos to the training camp to go shopping. But those explanations were fruitless.

They say, when in Rome do as the Romans do... The players bought the presents for their relatives in another shop and its owner was very glad. We only hope that if in London clothes so funnily counts for the first impression, after the match the Londoners will treat our team with respect.

FC Shakhtar
Press Office

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (17.02.10)
« Reply #27 on: February 17, 2010, 11:30:32 AM »

Chicago Fire Take Down Whitecaps FC 4-1

February 15, 2010 - North American Soccer League (NASL) Vancouver Whitecaps

Vancouver Whitecaps FC suffered a 4-1 defeat to Major League Soccer (MLS) club Chicago Fire in the second match of their two-week pre-season trip to Arizona on Monday.

A pair of first-half goals by Dutch striker Collins John set Chicago on their way to victory in their first match of the pre-season, despite Whitecaps midfielder Ricardo Sánchez scoring from the penalty spot just before the break for the USSF D-2 Pro League outfit. The Fire sealed the win at Arizona State University Soccer Stadium when second-half substitute Stefan Dimitrov scored twice shortly after halftime.

Following on from last Thursday's 3-2 friendly defeat to MLS club Seattle Sounders FC, Whitecaps head coach Teitur Thordarson made three changes to his starting XI for Monday's match in Tempe, Arizona. Trialist Dan Pelc replaced Jay Nolly in the Vancouver goal, while Nelson Akwari came in for trialist Wesley Charles at centre back. New 'Caps signing Zourab Tsiskaridze replaced Randy Edwini-Bonsu to partner Marlon James in attack.

On a typically warm and sunny Arizona afternoon, it was the Fire that made the most of their 4-1-4-1 formation set out by new head coach Carlos de los Cobos, with Monday's friendly played over the course of two 40-minute halves.

Chicago needed little time to take the lead. From their first corner of the match on 17 minutes, John took advantage of a partially cleared Joao Baptista set-piece, as he turned and powered home a right-footed shot for 1-0. The Fire doubled their advantage through another strike by John on 36 minutes. The trialist, who enjoyed a spell in the English Premier League with Fulham FC, struck a half-volleyed effort past Pelc to make it 2-0.

Two minutes after the second goal, however, the Whitecaps pulled one back after English defender Izzy Iriekpen brought down James in the Fire box for a penalty. Sánchez stepped up to convert his spot kick past Fire goalkeeper Andrew Dykstra for a 2-1 Chicago lead at the break.

The second half saw youngster Alex Semenets replace Tsiskaridze in attack, but it was the Fire that sealed the friendly with two goals from Bulgarian midfielder Dimitrov. He made it 3-1 with a strike from the top of the Vancouver box five minutes after the break, while his second goal was a header from a Mark Blades cross on 58 minutes.

Though Semenets and fellow Whitecaps substitute Cornelius Stewart had opportunities to reply for the Blue and White, Chicago ran out comfortable winners in the end.

Thordarson believes his players will learn from Monday's friendly. "Though we were never outplayed, what let us down were bad mistakes on the goals we conceded," he told "As difficult a match as it was, these games provide great experience for our players, as it shows them the level that they need to achieve. MLS clubs keep better ball possession than most of the teams we play in our league. It makes matches like today an important exercise for our team."

The Whitecaps will continue their pre-season camp in Arizona with a week of training before concluding the trip with a friendly versus 2009 MLS Cup champions Real Salt Lake at Grande Sports World in Casa Grande, Arizona, on Saturday afternoon. Kickoff is set for 3 p.m. PT.

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (17.02.10)
« Reply #28 on: February 17, 2010, 11:47:14 AM »

Alex Lawless then went close to opening the scoring with three edge-of-the-box efforts in as many minutes.

The former Fulham midfielder bent the first inches wide of Tyler’s left-hand post and then narrowly cleared the crossbar with the next two attempts – one with his right foot and the other with his left.

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (17.02.10)
« Reply #29 on: February 17, 2010, 11:55:08 AM »,17033,8652_5955089,00.html


Posted 17/02/10 10:48

Sunderland midfielder Andy Reid faces another month-long spell on the sidelines with a fresh hamstring injury.

Reid, who was out for four weeks after Christmas with a hamstring problem that saw him miss three games, sustained the latest blow in the 1-1 draw at Portsmouth.

"Unfortunately Andy has suffered a new hamstring injury," confirmed club physician Dr Glen Rae on the club's official website.

"He is working with the medical team, but is likely to be missing from training for around four weeks."

Reid could potentially miss Sunderland's next five Barclays Premier League games, starting at Arsenal on Saturday before matches with Fulham, Aston Villa, Bolton and Manchester City.

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (17.02.10)
« Reply #30 on: February 17, 2010, 11:56:43 AM »

Football clubs and Croydon College join to fight youth unemployment

Wednesday, February 17, 2010, 11:00

by Ian Austen

Croydon College is entering the big league in its ongoing drive to help young people into employment.

Working in partnership with football clubs Spurs, Arsenal, West Ham, Fulham, Charlton Athletic and Brentford, the college has won a £400,000 contract from the Department of Work and Pensions to create 60 jobs for 18 to 24 year olds.

The youngsters will be employed for six months with the clubs' community trusts, and will work towards gaining qualifications as football coaches.

 The young people will be provided with mentors from coaching staff, while the college will provide courses in literacy, numeracy and equipping them for employment.

Claire Parry, managing director of Croydon Skills and Enterprise College, which is part of Croydon College, said: "The contract is a real coup for us and shows we're dedicated to working innovatively in partnership with other organisations to support the development of both individuals and businesses in an unpredictable economic climate.

"It is great for Croydon that we have been chosen to take the lead and manage the programme."

The youngsters joining the scheme have been drawn by the college from unemployment hotspots across London, identified with the football clubs involved.
Half the youths starting out on the programme will be offered permanent jobs at the end of it.

Those chosen will then be offered an apprenticeship programme by the college.

The scheme is part of the Government's Future Jobs Fund which provides cash to projects creating jobs for young people.
Ms Parry is hopeful that if it is successful it could be extended to bring in other London clubs in the future.

Grant Cornwell, chief executive of the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation, which is leading the clubs in the partnership, said: "This is a fantastic opportunity for football clubs to work together addressing and impacting positively on employment in their local communities.

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (17.02.10)
« Reply #31 on: February 17, 2010, 12:00:37 PM »
FA Cup Confirmation

Wednesday 17th February 2010

Fulham FC News

The Club can confirm that Fulham's FA Cup Quarter Final clash against either Bolton Wanderers or Tottenham Hotspur at the Cottage will be played on Saturday 6th March. The game will kick-off at 5.20pm and will be shown live on ITV1.

FA Cup Ticket Information:
Tickets will go on sale Season Ticket Holders on Wednesday 17th February at 3pm (max 4 tickets). Season Ticket Holders seats will be held until 9am on Monday 22nd February.

Tickets will be made available to Fulham Club Members from 9am on Friday 19th February before going on General Sale at 9am on Monday 22nd February.

Season Ticket Holders who are on the Home Cup Tie Scheme will automatically have their ticket loaded onto their Season Ticket Access Card.

Season Ticket Holders on the Cup Scheme must inform the Ticket Office if their credit card has recently changed so their details can be updated.

Ticket Prices:
Advance price:
- Adults £25.00
- Over 65’s/ under 21’s £15.00
- Under 16’s £10.00

Matchday price
- Adults £30.00
- Over 65’s/under 21’s £20.00
- Under 16’s £15.00

Please note tickets will only be available to supporters purchasing in person on Thursday up to 7pm and on Sunday up to 2pm. Tickets will be available to purchase after the match on Sunday.

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (17.02.10)
« Reply #32 on: February 17, 2010, 12:33:31 PM »
Roman Pavlyuchenko: Why won't Harry Redknapp let me leave when I never play for Tottenham Hotspur

By Ashley Gray

Last updated at 12:02 PM on 17th February 2010

Roman Pavlyuchenko has pleaded with Harry Redknapp to stop making fun of him before he becomes a forgotten man.

The Tottenham Hotspur striker is baffled that his boss refused an offer from Lokomotiv Moscow, despite hardly calling on the 28-year-old this season.
Pavlyuchenko is heartened by support from the White Hart Lane faithful, but believes he has no future at the club who paid £13.8million for him after Euro 2008.

Lokomotiv Moscow claim Spurs chiefs were happy to sell them Pavlyuchenko this week, only for Redknapp to block a deal till the summer.

'Sometimes I have a feeling that Redknapp is just making fun of me,' he told Russian newspaper Sport Express. 'I told him that this can not go on, since I wouldn’t help my team with sad thoughts in my mind.

'I need to play football, otherwise people will have only memories of the footballer Pavlyuchenko and they won’t need him anymore.
'Lokomotiv made really worthy offer and if I sit on the sub’s bench they won’t offer the same sum in summer.'

Redknapp has remained an admirer, despite the striker making public his desire to return to Russia, and Robbie Keane was offloaded to Celtic on loan in the summer at the expense of Pavlyuchenko leaving the club.

Peter Crouch and Jermain Defoe are Spurs favoured frontline partnership, restricting the import to just four Barclays Premier League appearances from the bench this season.

When Pavlyuchenko asked to leave in August, he was convinced that he still had a role to play in north London, but injuries have compounded a continuing lack of opportunities.

'Redknapp said that I would play for sure,' he said. 'As the result I featured in six or seven games having 10 minutes of playing time. I am absolutely sure that it will be the same in the next three months.
'I don’t see any future for myself in Tottenham. They are a really big club with super fans, who liked me, however I think it’s the end of the affair, not with the team but with the head coach.'
Birmingham came closest to agreeing a fee with Spurs in the January transfer window, but Pavlyuchenko has his heart set on a return to Russia. Liverpool, West Ham and Fulham also expressed and interest in taking him on loan.

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (17.02.10)
« Reply #33 on: February 17, 2010, 03:36:02 PM »

5 Reasons Why I Think Fulham Can Conquer America

This entry is in response to the great article I just read on The article on is entitled " 5 Reasons Why Manchester City Can Conquer America". The writer discusses that Manchester City are considering a preseason tour of the United States. The writer mentions this could be an opportunity for Manchester City to become popular in the U.S. He then breaks down the 5 reasons why Manchester City can conquer America. The writer makes a very good argument for Manchester City in the U.S. Below I am going to give you the" 5 Reasons Why I think Fulham can Conquer America." If you want to read the reasons for Manchester City here is a link to the article. I think Roy Hogdson and Fulham have the potential to grow its fanbase in America. Please read below the link to see my reason for Fulham.

1. Americans love a great manager of a club. In American football, baseball, basketball and hockey the manager or coach is under the microscope of the fans of their teams. For example I will use Bill Belichick the Head Coach of the New England Patriots. In my opinion he might be the greatest coach in NFL history. He is constantly under scrutiny and is a polarizing figure. Belichick though is a 3 time Super Bowl champion ,who whether "you like him or hate him" has the respect of the media and the fans as a great head coach. As a fan I know the Patriots are always going to be well prepared and be put in the best situation to win. Roy Hogdson has put his club in the best position to win every week. As a fan their is not more than you can ask from your manager. I think Americans would be intrigued by Hogdson's history with the team and how he dug them out of possibly being relegated in 2007 - 2008 season. They will also appreciate how he started to rebuild Fulham on defense. Americans love a team that plays strong defense in any sport I would argue. It is a major key to victory. What also makes Hogdson appealing is his personality. In interviews and during games the man seems under control and confident. Roy would be a huge hit in America.

2. Fielding a strong international squad. As stated in the article America is a melting pot of many nations. What is great about Fulham is that the team like the EPL in general have an international makeup to its squad. The strikers are Bobby Zamora fom England and David Elm from Sweden. In the midfield you have Damien Duff from Ireland, Danny Murphy from England, Clint Dempsey from the United States, and Dickson Etuhu from Nigeria. In the back on defense you have Chris Baird from Northern Ireland, John Pantsil from Ghana, Brede Hangeland from Norway, and Aaron Hughes from Northern Ireland. Finally you have Mark Schwarzer in goal from Australia. Americans tend to be attracted to players they can relate to. The makeup of this team has someone for every fan.

3. Americans love to get behind the underdog. I think Americans like to get behind a team that doesn't have all the money in the world to spend on players. I think Americans are attracted to teams that have a strong work ethic and have to try harder to work with what they have. A team like Fulham reminds me of the 2001 New England Patriots. They did not have the most talent, but they played together as a team. Another team I would compare them to is the Minnesota Twins in baseball. This team does not have a huge payroll, but year after year they field a team that contends for their division. I think Fulham can be a team that contends for a Europa League spot consistently each year. They are not going to be a Champions League Team. I know if Americans watched Fulham beat Manchester United earlier this year they would be hooked on this team. The underdog beat one of the best teams in the world. Americans definitely would be behind a team like Fulham.

4. An American Player on the team and a past that has had several Americans on the squad. This goes back to the melting pot theory. Americans can relate to a team that has one of their own on it. Clint Dempsey is a very good player for Fulham. He is I would say a star on the U.S. World Cup Team. As we go into the summer many Americans will be watching the World Cup. Since Clint Dempsey plays for Fulham it will give fans a chance to see a prominent Fulham player. This could very well attract new fans to the club.

5. Fulham selected Fenway Sports Group as exclusive North American Agency. The Fenway Sports Group I have written a few months back about. This sports marketing agency could be a huge help with the growth of Fulham. Their main responsibility is finding corporate sponsorships including on the jersey for the 2010 - 2011 season. This organization is closely affiliated with the Boston Red Sox. The Red Sox have to be considered one of the best marketers of there brand in American Sports. This marketing has helped the Red Sox funnel money to pay for players. There is no question that marketing has had a huge positive effect on the Boston Red Sox. The result is they have won 2 World Series titles in the last 6 years. I think this firm could potentially help market Fulham better and build its brand. This could help the team have more money to spend on players.

I think these are 5 very good reasons why Fulham could become a favorite in the United States. I do think at some point they need to plan a summer preseason trip to America again. Seeing the team in person would definitely help build fan interest as well. They did come several years ago for a summer trip.

Maybe you don't think it is important for a team to breakthrough in America? I certainly can see that. If you are a fan of Fulham you want to see them compete every year in the EPL. The more fans of the team can mean more money which can be used to upgrade the team. I am of the mindset the more fans the better wherever they come from.

Posted by Fulham-Pats Fan at 8:02 AM 

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (17.02.10)
« Reply #34 on: February 17, 2010, 03:43:24 PM »


Fulham defender Paul Konchesky is unlikely to be available for Thursday's League clash with Shakhtar Donetsk.

Konchesky has returned to light training after recovering from his foot injury but the first leg of the last-32 match appears too early for his comeback.

Zoltan Gera returns from his knee problem but long-term casualties Kagisho Dikgacoi (ankle), Andrew Johnson, Clint Dempsey and John Pantsil (all knee) are out.


Fulham (from): Schwarzer, Zuberbuhler, Baird, Kelly, Stoor, Hangeland, Hughes, Smalling, Shorey, Gera, Duff, Murphy, Greening, Davies, Etuhu, Riise, Nevland, Okaka, Elm, Zamora.

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (17.02.10)
« Reply #35 on: February 17, 2010, 03:44:30 PM »,19528,12874_5955614,00.html

Elm eyes new Fulham deal

Striker keen on longer Craven Cottage stay

Last updated: 17th February 2010 understands David Elm is keen on signing a new deal at Fulham.

The Swedish striker has enjoyed a run in the side in recent weeks after injuries sustained by Andy Johnson and Clint Dempsey.

The 27-year-old, who joined Fulham in the summer from Kalmar FF, has impressed in the last few games, including scoring his first goal for the club in the 3-0 success over Burnley last week.

Elm originally signed a one-year deal at Craven Cottage with the club holding the option to extend it.

The player's agent, Patrick Mork, has revealed Fulham have indicated they are ready to take up the option to extend Elm's deal for a further two years and that they have up until the end of March to activate the clause in his contract.

"Nothing about a new deal has happened as yet, but we have got indications off Fulham that they want keep David," Mork told

"They have shown positive indications about taking up a two-year option in his contract and I would be surprised if they didn't.

"David would be delighted to sign a longer contract at Fulham as he is enjoying himself there.

"They have until March 31st to take up the option and if they don't I am sure there will be other clubs who will be interested in David.

"He is getting more confident now he is playing regularly and he is happy playing under Roy Hodgson."

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (17.02.10)
« Reply #36 on: February 17, 2010, 03:45:32 PM »,19528,11681_5955715,00.html

Argyle extend keeper deal

Stockdale stays on at Home Park

Last updated: 17th February 2010   

Plymouth Argyle have extended the loan spell of David Stockdale for a second month.

The Fulham goal keeper has spent an initial month on loan with the Championship club, making six appearances to date.

He has impressed Argyle manager Paul Mariner, who has now moved to extend the stay of the 24-year-old.

"David is returning for another month on loan," said Stockdale.

"We are trying to get a rolling deal but we are happy with what Roy Hodgson and his staff have asked.

"My viewpoint is he has improved the team. He helps the unit and the back four so we are delighted he joined us - and is staying for another month."

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (17.02.10)
« Reply #37 on: February 17, 2010, 03:46:35 PM »

Fulham defender Brede Hangeland hoping for Shakhtar success

Feb 17 2010 By Yann Tear

Brede Hangeland

FULHAM boss Roy Hodgson should not be surprised if Brede Hangeland starts offering to carry his bags and make him extra cups of tea in the next couple of days.

The big Norwegian is desperate to play in tomorrow's mouth-watering Europa League tie against last year's Uefa Cup winners Shakhtar Donetsk and will do his best to persuade the boss he should play.

Fulham boss Hodgson is almost certain to select his centre-half against the Ukranians, but Hangeland was rested for half of the European group ties and he does not want to miss out again.

“I always want to play, whether it's a friendly, the League Cup, or the European Cup, even if you feel sometimes you are a bit tired and the body could use a rest," he said.

“When you see the game kick off and you're not a part of it, you always feel disappointed. But I trust the manager's judgement and hopefully I can get to play against Shakhtar.

“The atmosphere for the game against Roma was fantastic and it could be like that again. They are the big nights you look forward to as players and they are a really nice break from the league."

Hangeland will not be dropped because of his form, even though he conceded it took a slight dip last month.

“I'd like to think I was at a decent level, but I've definitely played better games than the ones in January. It's easier to play well when the team's doing well and when we as a team struggle, I think all individuals find it a bit harder to raise their standards.

“What's more, I've been having trouble with my knee injury for a while. It seems to have settled down now, but it wasn't very comfortable during the games in January.”

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (17.02.10)
« Reply #38 on: February 17, 2010, 03:50:50 PM »

Wanderers 0 Fulham 0 - The Keighey Report

Sunday, 07 February 2010 06:26 Brian Keighley   

The problem with being a Messiah is that people anticipate instant miracles. The more realistic might settle for some early signs of gradual change but they too would have been disappointed by this performance. I know Rome wasn’t built in a day but surely Romulus, gazing down from his hill, would have expected to see a few cranes and bulldozers before he rode off to find some Sabine women to help populate his new city. There were no such harbingers of transformation on display at the Reebok yesterday. The game, particularly in the first half, was distinctly Megsonian. Given the enforced absence of Cahill and Steinsson, who were replaced by Andy O’brien and Robinson, pre-match hopes were that we would score more than them; it soon became apparent that goals would be as rare as Sabine virgins.

Some of the blame for this lay in the initial selection and tactics. It appears that OC sees Mark Davies as a Teddy Sheringham or Peter Beardsely, playing behind the main striker and producing probing passes, which result in lots of goals. It didn’t work, partly because Davies Minor isn’t that kind of player, partly because Davies Major doesn’t score lots of goals, and partly because the defence habitually play the ball direct to Davies Major anyway. The result was that for an hour we had the familiar lack of co-ordination with the ball in the air as often as it was on the floor.

The first half had only one memorable moment. It brought me out of my seat celebrating the opening goal, only to find that, incomprehensibly, play was still continuing. The move involved the two Davieses. Kevin’s header for once found its target and set up Mark. His shot from close in struck Schwarzer but rather than ricocheting into the goal it struck the underside of the bar and bounced back into play.

After an hour of largely aimless endeavour OC brought on Elmander in place of Mark Davies and we reverted to a more conventional 4-4-2. It made little difference; we were still awful and Fulham were worse. Things appeared to deteriorate even further when O’Brien was injured and the defence had to be re-jigged with Basham at right back and Ricketts switching to left centre back. Fortunately even this makeshift line up was adequate to contain the impotent Fulham attack.

Finally, with just twenty minutes left, Weiss replaced Taylor and things improved. Virtually all the action and excitement occurred after this substitution. Weiss made an instant impact, remained busy, and things started to happen. Cohen put Chung through but as the Korean rounded Schwarzer, the keeper thrust out a paw and palmed the ball away. Muamba almost bundled the ball in at the near post and Elmander missed a sitter when put through by Davies. Weiss himself had a shot that cannoned off a defender and ballooned over the bar. At last, in the final minute Kevin Davies scored with a header from a Chung free kick. Once again I was out of my seat rejoicing but again my elation was short lived. Mr. Clattenburg saw a push that even the Match of the Day cameras failed to pick up.

Bad as we were for most of the game we ought to have won against a poor Fulham side and, given the late rally, the win would have been deserved. However, the referee’s defective eyesight and an inability to convert chances meant that we lost two precious points. It’s ironic that under the defence obsessed Megson we scored plenty of goals but leaked them at the other end, whilst under the attack minded Coyle the goals have dried up but we have kept three clean sheets.

Individual heroes were few and far between but one man in a white shirt was outstanding. Jim was less than complimentary about Fabrice Muamba in his account of the Burnley game and in conversation his criticism was even stronger. Another friend, John, is habitually critical of the midfield player. For various reasons neither Jim nor John were at this game and they won’t believe my praise is justified. Nevertheless, he was magnificent. Whilst Mark Davies was on the pitch, Muamba lay deep and I thought this was the reason for his improved display, but later, when we reverted to 4-4-2, he was equally good. And this against a midfield that included Danny Murphy, Jonathon Greening and Damien Duff, who can all play a bit.

Another player that did well was Zat Knight. Without Cahill, Knight was the cornerstone of a generally sound defence, commanding both in the air and on the ground. My praise is only qualified by the fact that the Fulham attack was woeful and that, together with the rest of the defence, Knight’s distribution was weak. O’Brien and Robinson were the worst offenders but they all tended to play the ball in the air.

Elsewhere there was only disappointment. Chung flitted in and out, a shadow of his best. Kevin Davies had his moments and did some good things but his technique was unreliable. Cohen remains a trier, and his pass to Chung was a peach, but he isn’t really up to the task. When Elmander came on Cohen was the player that should have left, with Mark Davies dropping back into a more conventional midfield role. Taylor was once again poor and, on current form, he adds nothing to the game. The introduction of Weiss was the catalyst to improvement and the change should have been made sooner.

So, a few criticisms of St. Owen in this report. I haven’t lost the faith, I believe our play will become easier on the eye but not everyone will be patient. At a guess, there were more Bolton fans present at this game than for some time. Some of them won’t come again and there was even a faint suggestion of booing at half time.

Those of you that live in Bolton might be aware that the current production at the Manchester Exchange theatre is Lorraine Hansberry’s A Raisin in the Sun. I’m still dreaming of a golden future for the Wanderers but the title of the play is taken from a poem by Langston Hughes, which contains the ominous lines

 ‘What happens to a dream deferred?Does it dry upLike a raisinin the sun?’ Come on Owen. You’ve improved the defence, now trust your instincts and play those that are comfortable on the ball. Chung, Weiss, Wilshire, Mark Davies, Ricky, not a long list, but enough to make a difference.   

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Re: Wednesday Fulham Stuff (17.02.10)
« Reply #39 on: February 18, 2010, 05:19:42 PM »

Chicago Fire Take Down Whitecaps FC 4-1

A pair of first-half goals by Dutch striker Collins John set Chicago on their way to victory in their first match of the pre-season,

The trialist, who enjoyed a spell in the English Premier League with Fulham FC, struck a half-volleyed effort past Pelc to make it 2-0.

Well, I'm glad SOMEBODY bloody enjoyed it!  >:(