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Premiership Weekend Preview - 13.10.05

last updated Thursday 13th October 2005, 5:26 PM

Fulham are away at Charlton on Monday in Match Day 9 of the 2005/2006 Premiership campaign.

Once again Fulham play on a Monday evening in a televised game against a London rival. This time the opposition will be Charlton who are second in the Premiership having lost just 2 games out of seven. Both the defeats were at home one against Fulham Broadway and the other against Tottenham.

Historically although Charlton has the edge it is not unusual for Fulham to get a result away at The Valley. So with slightly more concentration in the final third The Cottagers should be able to give Chairman Mo reason to keep Chris Coleman in his job.

Prior to Monday's game The Cottagers could face the unpleasant situation of being bottom in the Premiership. Normally Arsenal and Tottenham could be relied on to dispense with weaker opposition however Chris Coleman for one will have quite a few things crossed on Saturday. Individual match comments below are from Dave Tindall and Derek Bilton at BettingZone.

Premiership Match Day 8 Games
Home Away KO T.V.
Saturday 15 October 2005
Wigan Newcastle 12.45 ppv
Chelsea Bolton 15.00  
Liverpool Blackburn 15.00  
Sunderland Man Utd 15.00  
Tottenham Everton 15.00  
West Brom Arsenal 15.00  
Middlesbrough Portsmouth 17.15 sky2
Sunday 16 October 2005
Birmingham Aston Villa 12.00  
Man City West Ham 16.00 sky1
Monday 17 October 2006
Charlton Fulham 20.00 sky1
Pos Team Pld W D L F A Pts Gd
1 Chelsea 8 8 0 0 18 2 24 +16
2 Charlton 7 5 0 2 12 7 15 +5
3 Tottenham 8 4 3 1 9 5 15 +4
4 Man Utd 7 4 2 1 10 5 14 +5
5 Bolton 8 4 2 2 9 6 14 +3
6 Man City 8 4 2 2 9 6 14 +3
7 Arsenal 7 4 1 2 10 4 13 +6
8 Wigan 7 4 1 2 7 5 13 +2
9 West Ham 7 3 3 1 11 5 12 +6
10 Middlesbro 8 3 2 3 9 11 11 -2
11 Blackburn 8 3 2 3 7 9 11 -2
12 Newcastle 8 2 3 3 5 7 9 -2
13 Liverpool 6 1 4 1 4 6 7 -2
14 Portsmouth 8 1 3 4 5 9 6 -4
15 Birmingham 8 1 3 4 7 12 6 -5
16 Aston Villa 8 1 3 4 8 14 6 -6
17 Sunderland 8 1 2 5 6 11 5 -5
18 Fulham 8 1 2 5 7 13 5 -6
19 West Brom 8 1 2 5 7 15 5 -8
20 Everton 7 1 0 6 1 9 3 -8
Wigan v Newcastle - (KO 12.45 - Saturday - 15 October 05)

Some oddsmakerss believe that the first Wigan v Newcastle clash since 1954 could be a draw. Few could have imagined such parity before the season started as Wigan were widely tipped as guaranteed relegation fodder. But, not only have they proved that they can hold their own, they've actually taken it a step further and won games - four of their last five the remarkable tally. Paul Jewell deserves massive credit for getting his side to hit the ground running but he knows as well as anyone that the good times can't go on forever.With Newcastle not pulling up any trees, Wigan many fancy themselves again but, in such circumstances, winning runs are often ended. Newcastle have picked up a win and a draw in their last two away games and three clean sheets on the spin in the Premiership points to a side with a greater resilience than their stereotype suggests. Take the Magpies to give Wigan an unwelcome reality check in front of the live Sky cameras. Verdict: Wigan 0 Newcastle 2

Chelsea v Bolton - (KO 15.00 - Saturday - 15 October 05)

Jose Mourinho revealed plenty of times last season that he didn't like international breaks and there was good reason for that. Chelsea's only Premiership defeat of the entire campaign came on the back of such a break and, all in all, they won just three games out of six following international action. One of the teams to frustrate them was Bolton, who pinched a 2-2 draw at Stamford Bridge and Sam Allardyce's men may be able to serve up a repeat performance on Saturday. The Trotters have won three and lost just once in five away games this term and also stunned Chelsea at Stamford Bridge two seasons ago when John Terry scored a last-minute own goal. It suggests that Chelsea could have a problem with Bolton with the draw a perfectly reasonable shout. Chelsea's winning run has to come to an end at some point and battle-hardened Bolton look just the sort of team to bring it to a halt. Verdict: Chelsea 1 Bolton 1

Liverpool v Blackburn - (KO 15.00 - Saturday - 15 October 05)

Without a goalscorer, Liverpool are going to get deeply frustrated as the season goes on. And this fixture looks a prime candidate for the Reds having to settle for yet another draw. Of course, Rafa Benitez does have an obvious solution to the problem in the form of Djibril Cisse. The Frenchman scored freely in pre-season and the early European games and has been banging them in for France. But in the Premiership he's been reduced to a bit-part player, coming on as a late sub or looking like a square peg in a round hole out on the right. If Benitez plays him up front in a 4-4-2 Liverpool's chances of victory should increase although Blackburn will still be hard to beat. Mark Hughes' men dug out a 0-0 at Anfield last season and their ambitions may be a lot higher this time having already beaten Manchester United at Old Trafford. However, the Chelsea game aside, this Liverpool team are hard to beat so the draw could be the favourite. Verdict: Liverpool 1 Blackburn 1

Sunderland v Man Utd - (KO 15.00 - Saturday - 15 October 05)

You have to go back to 1997 for the last time the Red Devils lost on Wearside, and despite Sunderland's recent revival (they are unbeaten in their last four) it's hard to make a case for the Black Cats in this one. The harsh reality is that in four Premiership matches they have yet to win a game at the Stadium of Light, and with the likes of Wayne Rooney, Ruud van Nistelrooy and Cristiano Ronaldo in town, that record looks as though it's going to get worse before it gets better. United boss Sir Alex Ferguson insists he is still happy playing a 4-3-3 formation, but his decision to use Rooney in a more orthodox striking role in their 3-2 win at Fulham probably won't be short term. The Croxteth-born teenager was superb at Craven Cottage, and should find Sunderland's creaky defence to his liking. The hosts will also be without Julio Arca for the clash, with £15,000 Stockport signing Andy Welsh again likely to deputise. United know they simply cannot lose any more ground on leaders Chelsea if they are to not openly surrender the title before October is outVerdict: Sunderland 0 Man Utd 2

Tottenham v Everton- (KO 15.00 - Saturday - 15 October 05)

Everton's troubles have been well documented of late and they go into this having lost six of their first seven Premiership games. Unsurprisingly the Toffees are rock bottom and boss David Moyes held a crisis meeting with his players last week in an effort to stop the rot. In stark contrast Spurs are buzzing. The North Londoners are currently third in the table and have lost just one game all season (a 2-0 reverse at home to champions Chelsea). Unsurprisingly Martin Jol's men are odds-on to win the game, and given just how poor Everton have been of late that looks a price plenty of big-hitters may get enthused about. Yet despite the evidence I can't see Everton merely rolling over at White Hart Lane. Their professional pride will have been hurt by what has gone on in the last few weeks, and they will no doubt be looking to set their stall out in this one. Whether they can keep it tight for 90 minutes against a side boasting the pace and finesse of men like Aaron Lennon and Jermain Defoe remains to be seen however. Verdict: Tottenham 1 Everton 0

West Brom v Arsenal - (KO 15.00 - Saturday - 15 October 05)

West Brom are another side who are really toiling presently, with Bryan Robosn's men having lost five of their last six Premiership games. They are also struggling for goals, having scored more than one on just two occasions so far. They meet an Arsenal side who failed to convince for long spells against Birmingham last time out, and it's possible goals could be at a premium at the Hawthorns. Gunners talisman Thierry Henry is again likely to be out, meaning that the likes of Jose Antonio Reyes, Robin van Persie and Freddie Ljungberg will be assigned the task of firing Arsenal to victory. Verdict: West Brom 0 Arsenal 1

Middlesbrough v Portsmouth - (KO 17.15 - Saturday - 15 October 05)

Middlesbrough have been a bit hit and miss so far this season at their Teesside HQ, but I can't see Portsmouth posing them too many problems. Alain Perrin's men have scored just five goals in eight matches so far, and seem to be badly missing former striker Aiyegbeni Yakubu - now of Middlesbrough fame. The Nigerian goal machine has already struck four goals in seven Premiership appearances for his new club. Middlesbrough are a good side who have been a bit unlucky with injuries so far this season, and I don't think it unreasonable to see them cantering to a routine 2-0 win here. Verdict: Middlesbrough 2 Portsmouth 0

Birmingham v Aston Villa - (KO 12.00 - Sunday - 16 October 05)

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Man City v West Ham - (KO 16.00 - Sunday - 16 October 05)

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Charlton v Fulham - (KO 20.00 - Monday - 17 October 05)

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