0 users online

Fulham at home to Swansea ~ Match Preview

last updated Friday 16th March 2012, 12:06 PM

Fulham manager Martin Jol
Fulham manager
Martin Jol
Martin Jol

A couple of weeks ago, after defeats to Norwich and Stoke, it seemed as though Swansea may be within sight of the relegation battlers hoping to suck somebody else down into the mire. Wins over Wigan and Manchester City have quickly put that notion to bed.

Instead Swansea are firmly mid-table, a healthy 14 points above the unseemly scrabble for survival below. In fact they are level on points with opponents Fulham, and like the Cottagers, can harbour hopes of a top-eight finish.

Actually both clubs will be wondering whether a really strong end to the campaign could turn their seasons into a record breaker; Fulham's highest finish was seventh in 2009, Swansea's sixth in 1982.

I am really looking forward to seeing Pavel Pogrebnyak. Just as Andrey Arshavin, Diniyar Bilyaletdinov and Roman Pavlyuchenko were moving away from the Premier League, so the Cottagers brought the Russian to England on a short-term contract until the end of the season - and therein lies Fulham's Pogrebnyak problem. The man who had scored just one goal in 14 games for Stuttgart in the first half of the season has scored five goals in four matches since.

Nicknamed "Super Po" by former Zenit team-mate Arshavin, he looks set to be one of the most sought-after strikers this summer when he'll be available on a free transfer. The more goals his client scores, the wider the smile on Pogrebnyak's agent must be. Alex McLeish has intimated he is interested in taking Pogrebnyak from Fulham to Aston Villa this summer; Villans owner Randy Lerner had better have his wallet ready.

Two footballing teams going head-to-head in a stadium which retains more character than all the boring new builds put together. If the sun is out as well, how much better could a Saturday afternoon be?


  • The last league meeting between the sides at Craven Cottage came in the bottom tier of English football in 1997, when Fulham won 2-1.

  • The Swans have lost their last four games away to Fulham in league and cup, conceding a total of 14 goals.

  • Their last win at Craven Cottage was a 2-1 victory in Division Two on 23 February 1980.

  • Fulham

  • Martin Jol's side have yet to lose a match in which they opened the scoring this season (W7, D3).

  • Fulham have not lost a Premier League game played at Craven Cottage on a Saturday this season.

  • They are unbeaten in six league and cup home games, winning five of those matches. Their last defeat at Craven Cottage was the 5-0 loss to Manchester United on 21 December.

  • The Cottagers have scored 29 of their 37 league goals on home turf this season.

  • They are the only Premier League team yet to received a red card.

  • Swansea

  • The Swans recorded their 11th Premier League clean sheet last weekend. Only the two Manchester clubs (13) can better that tally this season.

  • Brendan Rodgers' side have claimed only 12 of their 36 points away from home. However, they have won three of their last five away league matches.

  • Swansea have lost both of their Premier League matches in London, going down 1-0 at Arsenal and 4-1 at Chelsea.

  • Opta statistics show the Swans have committed the fewest fouls (233) in the top flight this season.

Source Steve Wilson at BBCSports
Since 1998
"It's been updated!"