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Fulham welcome Norwich -- PL Match Preview

last updated Friday 11th April 2014, 12:16 PM


Fulham manager Felix Magath
Fulham manager
Felix Magath
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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer of Cardiff and Gus Poyet of Sunderland used the same word after defeats last weekend to describe their chances of avoiding relegation.

Both managers said their side needed a miracle to stay up. If we take them at their word, that means Cardiff and Sunderland feel their fate is virtually sealed, leaving just one relegation place remaining to be filled.

One of these two teams may very well complete the trio of clubs to do down. At the moment it's Fulham who occupy 18th place, five points behind Norwich. The departure of Chris Hughton from the Norwich hot-seat last Sunday night provoked mixed reactions, which from what I can gather seem to fall into two camps.

There is the reaction from outside Norfolk, which was largely shock at the timing of Hughton's exit, and the feeling that Norwich had panicked.

Then there is the reaction from Norfolk itself, which seems to be that the Canaries were 100% certain to be returning to the Championship under Hughton, and that the appointment of club favourite Neil Adams for the rest of the season is less of a gamble than sticking with the previous regime.

Fulham, of course, are on their third manager of the season, and Felix Magath will be looking to build on last weekend's victory at Aston Villa, which moved them off the bottom of the table. Fulham will be encouraged by the fact Norwich have lost their last six away league games, and 12 of their 16 away league matches this season.

When Fulham won 2-1 at Norwich on Boxing Day, Rene Meulensteen was in charge, as he was for their FA Cup victory in January. Indeed, Fulham have an excellent record against Norwich and you don't need to go back too far to remember the final day of the 2004-05 season.

Norwich were relegated after a 6-0 drubbing at Craven Cottage nine years ago. This Saturday will be just as tense, and while the result won't condemn one of these teams to the drop it will go a long way to determining their fate.

    Head-to-head

  • Fulham are unbeaten in the last 15 league and cup meetings, including all seven previous Premier League fixtures (W11, D4).


  • Norwich last beat Fulham in the 1985-86 season in the old Second Division, when they won 1-0 at Craven Cottage on New Year's Day and 2-1 at Carrow Road the following March.


  • Fulham


  • Fulham have only earned 13 points from 16 home games, the worst record in the division bar Sunderland (12).


  • The Whites have the league's worst defensive record and have conceded 34 of their 74 goals at Craven Cottage.


  • They have only won half of the 10 matches in which they opened the scoring, taking 18 points from those matches. Only Aston Villa (17) have fared worse.


  • Felix Magath's side are the first team in Premier League history to use 38 different players in a single season. Mahamadou Diarra became the 38th last weekend.


  • Norwich City


  • Norwich's only victory in the last six league matches came against bottom-of-the-table Sunderland.


  • The Canaries have gone eight away matches without a win, losing the last six.


  • They have lost 12 away games this season, the most in the Premier League.


  • Only Crystal Palace have scored fewer Premier League goals than Norwich's tally of 26.


  • Seven-goal leading scorer Gary Hooper has gone 15 matches without a goal since scoring against Fulham on Boxing Day.
























Source John Roder at BBCSports
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