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The Arizonan

Coleman confident of Cup win

last updated Tuesday 19th September 2006, 4:38 PM
Chris Coleman
Chris Coleman

Fulham will field a depleted side for Wednesday's Carling Cup clash with Wycombe but boss Chris Coleman insists it should still be too strong for Wanderers.

The Cottagers' injury problems show no sign of easing with captain Luis Boa Morte the latest player to be ruled out after taking a bang on his cheekbone against Tottenham on Sunday.

He joins midfielders Papa Bouba Diop, Jimmy Bullard, Ahmad Elrich, Simon Elliott and Mark Pembridge in the treatment room, while versatile defender Philippe Christanval remains a doubt.

It is Coleman's policy to select his strongest available side for both cup competitions but with Chelsea looming on Saturday, he will not take any risks.

He explained: "I've said all long that I will not pick a weakened team for the Carling Cup.

"But while I'm not going to select the kids, any player who is still struggling from the Tottenham game won't be figuring.

"No disrespect to Wycombe but any team we field should be strong enough to win, although they will make it hard for us.

"I want to do well in both cups. I rested a lot of guys in the FA Cup last year.

"We didn't haven't a lot of strength in depth and got beaten by Orient. We had enough good players on the pitch, we just didn't perform."

Even at Craven Cottage Fulham look good bets to be one of the Barclays Premiership's big guns to suffer an early exit.

They were upset 2-1 by Orient in the FA Cup third round last season and only scraped past Lincoln 5-4 in a frantic Carling Cup tie.

A good run in the knockout competitions would do wonders for a club who look set for a mid-table finish in the Premiership but their crippling injury list is conspiring against them.

Young midfielders Matthew Collins, Michael Timlin and Chris James could be given their chance while summer signings Bjorn Runstrom and Gabriel Zakuani may make their full debuts.




Source Duncan Bech at PA Sport
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