0 users online

Fulham vrs Blackburn - Match Preview

last updated Saturday 10th January 2009, 9:50 AM

Sam Allardyce felt like he'd had his presents taken from under the Christmas tree the last time Blackburn Rovers played in the league and the aggrieved boss can expect no gifts of any sort either from an in-form Fulham at Craven Cottage on Saturday.

A two-point haul over the festive period represented slim pickings indeed after Jason Roberts' inexplicable late miss at Sunderland and an equally inconceivable comeback from Manchester City at Ewood Park.

Team Fulham Blackburn
Games Played 19 20
Goal Attempts
Goals 18 22
Ave Goals per game 0.95 1.10
Shots (excl blocked shots) 187 183
% Shots on Target 44% 41%
% Goals to Shots 10% 12%
Short Passes 6,643 6,142
Long Passes 1,174 1,216
Overall Pass Completion % 75% 72%
Total Crosses 432 445
Cross Completion % 24% 25%
Goals Conceded 14 36
Ave goals conceded per game 0.74 1.80
Tackles 427 456
Tackles Won % 71% 74%
Blocks, Clearances & Interceptions 1237 1268
Fouls 225 294
Yellow Cards 18 40
Red Cards 1 2
Allardyce need not wallow too long in the post-Christmas blues though, with an unbeaten start, comprising two wins and two draws, a more than encouraging start to his Ewood Park tenure.

Rovers' new-found resolve will be required if they are to get anything from a venue which is less a cottage and more a fortress. Roy Hodgson's side are unbeaten in a club-record nine league matches - a statistic that only leaders Liverpool can match.

Fulham, the Premier League's draw specialists, have finished all square in six of their last seven league matches and, with Rovers making slow but steady progress, that may be become seven in eight by Saturday evening.

Ryan Nelsen and Andre Ooijer are available again following suspension, but Roque Santa Cruz, who looks increasingly likely to have played his final match in a Rovers shirt, is unlikely to be risked after making slow progress with a calf injury.

Matt Derbyshire and Martin Olsson, two of the 11 changes made by Allardyce for Monday's FA Cup win over Blyth Spartans, are both suffering from illness.

The Cottagers must check on the fitness of Jimmy Bullard and Zoltan Gera before Hodgson is able to finalise his selection. Bullard is struggling with a hip problem, while Gera is carrying a calf complaint.

Prediction: 1-1

Source setanta sport
Since 1998
"It's been updated!"