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MATCH PREVIEW ~ Fulham visit Chelsea ~ Prem MD 21 ~ 23/24

last updated Friday 12th January 2024, 9:11 PM

Match Preview

Chelsea v Fulham

Premier League Match Day 21 23-24 Stamford Bridge

Saturday 13th January 2024    KO: 12:30

Referee: Anthony Taylor (Cheshire)

Live on TNT Sports

Fulham manager Marco Silva
Fulham manager
Marco Silva
Marco Silva
His Wiki page
Chelsea coach Mauricio Pochettino
Chelsea coach
Mauricio Pochettino
His Wiki page
Fulham and Chelsea seek a slice of redemption in Saturday lunchtime's Premier League West London derby having both come up short in the first legs of their EFL Cup semi-finals.

Progression to the FA Cup fourth round preceded Fulham's opening EFL Cup semi-final encounter with Liverpool on Wednesday evening, and having overcome Rotherham United 1-0 in the former tournament, victory by the same scoreline was briefly on the cards at Anfield thanks to a surprise Willian opener.

The Cottagers' defensive supremacy came to the fore in what remained of the first half, but Liverpool eventually levelled matters midway through the second half thanks to a deflected Curtis Jones strike, before substitutes Darwin Nunez and Cody Gakpo combined for the latter to fire home the decisive strike.

Despite failing to hold onto a one-goal lead against Liverpool for the second time in two months, Fulham will have at least 90 minutes at Craven Cottage on January 24 to turn the tie on its head, but Silva's current task at hand is ending an abysmal stretch of away form in the Premier League.

The 13th-placed Cottagers deservedly got the better of Arsenal in their final fixture of 2023, but they have been beaten in each of their last four road matches in the top flight - shipping at least three goals on each occasion - and not since beating Everton on the opening weekend of the season have they come up trumps on rival turf.

Quickfire goals from Mykhaylo Mudryk and Armando Broja proved telling in Chelsea's 2-0 win at Craven Cottage in October, and it has been 45 years since the Blues were last bested at home by Fulham, who prevailed 2-0 in a Division Two fixture in October 1979.

Chelsea return to face a disgruntled Stamford Bridge faithful on the back of a humbling 1-0 loss to Middlesbrough.

Putting four unanswered goals past Preston North End in the FA Cup would seemingly be the perfect warm-up for a trip to another Championship outfit in Middlesbrough for Chelsea, who ventured to the Riverside at a time where the Boro squad was ravaged by injuries, ineligible players and international call-ups.

The odds were firmly stacked against Michael Carrick's men in the EFL Cup, but the former Manchester United midfielder unexpectedly got one over the West London giants yet again on Tuesday evening, where the highly-rated Hayden Hackney propelled Middlesbrough to a memorable triumph.

Whether Boro can make lightning strike twice at Stamford Bridge on January 23 remains to be seen, but before Chelsea can dream dreams of revenge and a potential trip to Wembley, a third successive Premier League win is the current priority on Pochettino's agenda.

Despite ending a forgettable 2023 with back-to-back successes over Crystal Palace and Luton Town - prevailing by one goal on each occasion - Chelsea just cannot sneak into the single figures, as they remain 10th in the standings but with just a three-point disadvantage to make up to Brighton & Hove Albion in seventh.

After winning just three Premier League games at home from January 2023 to November 2023, Chelsea turned their Stamford Bridge fortunes around to take nine points from a possible nine on familiar territory in December, but not since July 2020 have they earned four successive top-flight wins at home.

Head to Head

  • Fulham have won just one of the past 23 Premier League meetings, 2-1 at home on 12 January last year (D8, L14).

  • The Cottagers haven't won at Stamford Bridge in 18 league attempts since a 2-0 Second Division victory in October 1979 (D7, L11).

  • Chelsea have only conceded one goal in their past eight competitive games against Fulham at Stamford Bridge, keeping clean sheets in the last five.
  • Fulham are aiming to avoid a fifth consecutive away league defeat.

  • They have lost their last four Premier League away games, conceding at least three goals in each.

  • Marco Silva's side have won just one of their 10 away matches in this season's Premier League (D3, L6).

  • Only bottom side Sheffield United have conceded more Premier League away goals than Fulham's 23 this campaign. The Cottagers conceded 24 away league goals in the whole of last season.

  • Fulham lost 20 Premier League matches in 2023, a joint-high alongside Bournemouth and Everton.

  • The Cottagers are looking to win three consecutive top-flight London derbies for the first time since 2013.
  • Chelsea are aiming to win four home league matches in a row for the first time since July 2020.

  • The Blues won only 12 of their 43 Premier League games in 2023 (D12, L19), the fewest they had recorded in a calendar year since 1995.

  • They are winless in their opening league fixture in each of the last seven years (D5, L2).

  • Mauricio Pochettino has won all six of his meetings with Fulham in all competitions, with his side scoring 15 goals and conceding just two.

  • Cole Palmer has scored eight goals and contributed four assists in 12 Premier League starts for Chelsea.


Source Ben Knapton at SportsMole/BBCSports
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