On this page you find betting tips related to Fulham.
September 20th, 2012 / callum - Category:
Premier League Tips
Wigan have just the one win to their name thus far this season but they have performed admirably at some point of all four of their league games this season. The challenge for Roberto Martinez and his men is to inject a bit more consistency and concentration to their game from the beginning. They were 2-0 down in 10 minutes on the opening day of the season against Chelsea; led twice at home to Wigan before drawing 2-2 and were 0-0 at half time away from home against Manchester United before capitulating in the second period. Consistency is what separates side in the bottom half of the table to those in the top 10 and it’s a position which Martinez is striving for. One thing that is certain is that their defenders need to cut out the individual mistakes which have blighted their season at crucial times. Ivan Ramis and Gary Caldwell have both been at fault for goals and should it continue, Wigan and all concerned with them can expect another battle to avoid the drop.
Fulham enjoyed another home victory when brushing aside West Brom 3-0 last weekend but it’s their performances on the road which Martin Jol will be thinking most about. For as long as Fulham have been in the Premier League they have been strong at Craven Cottage and it’s a trait which has continued under the tutorship of Jol since he came into post last summer. As good as they have been at home they have been equally bad on the road. From their last 55 away games in the Premier League, the cottagers have won only seven. It is a deplorable record but it does highlight how well they have done at home as they are an established Premier League side who rarely flirt with relegation at the end of the season. Jol has slowly but surely been stamping his mark on the squad and has moved on several of the old guard. Two losses against West Ham and Man United suggest that it’s not quite had the effect he would have hoped.
There is little doubt that Wigan play an attractive brand of football and are very entertaining. You could argue that it is to their downfall at times as the overplaying – especially in the defence – has saw them be their own worst enemies. That being said, Martinez’ is unlikely to be deterred by the odd error even if it led to a goal because it’s his philosophy. As much as they will give teams plenty of chances, they will also create plenty of problems for them because of the way they play the game.
It will be interesting to see if Jol continues with the same set of players away from home as he does at home. So often when a side is playing on the road they tend to change either certain personnel or the system and tactics they are deployed in. Jol normally refrains from doing that and approaches away games as though they are home games. The 3-0 thrashing at the hands of West Ham could be the turning point, however, and he may well opt to go with one up and stiffen up the midfield.
Both sides play an expansive style and it’s likely they will produce an entertaining match with so many good football players. Wigan have been unlucky at home this season and I fancy them to get their first win against a side who have shown little improvement in away games against teams of similar ability.
Wigan 6/4 @ William Hill
September 13th, 2012 / Matt - Category:
Premier League Tips
Fulham V West Brom – Saturday, 15 September 2012 (Kick-Off: 15:00)
Betting Selection: Both Teams to Score @ 8/11 (Bet365)
On the opening day of the season, Fulham looked awesome as they consummately swept aside the challenge from Norwich at Craven Cottage. Martin Jol’s men were given rave reviews in the national newspapers the following morning, all of which were justified following an emphatic 5-0 win. Since then, however, the Cottagers have been anything but impressive – which is the very word I would use to describe the start opponents West Brom have made to the new term. So it’s easy to find a case for the visitors here, who will appeal to some at 3/1.
On the back of their thumping opening day victory over the Canaries came a couple of away defeats for Fulham, at Manchester United and West Ham. Hardly surprising considering the West London club have never been particular positive on the road. The 3-2 reverse at Old Trafford was slightly harsh on them I felt, but they got precisely what they deserved for an abject display against West Ham in their final league game before the international break, with a comprehensive 3-0 loss occurring less than 24 hours after the club completed the sales of Moussa Dembele and Clint Dempsey to London rivals Tottenham. A coincidence? Certainly not.
I had predicted that Fulham would struggle to maintain the high standards they had previously set in the first two weeks of the season without arguably their two greatest assets. Both Dempsey and Dembele have been fantastic servants in recent seasons; Dempsey was Fulham’s leading marksmen last season, while Dembele possessed a real touch of class in the middle of the park. The team will recover, of that I am confident, but there are concerns that the Cottagers may fall back into their mould of being heavily reliant on results at home now – the 3-0 loss to West Ham, who were devoid of attacking threat in their first two matches, possibly an ominous indication of what might be to come away from home this season.
Perhaps it was a knee-jerk reaction to losing two influential figures, the poor performance at West Ham? I’m inclined to think it was, as there is a nice balance to this Fulham team. For me, the loss of Dempsey isn’t too detrimental. I mean, it isn’t as though the club are short of forwards. Bryan Ruiz, Hugo Rodellega, Mladen Petric and Dimitar Berbatov will all contribute this season. The loss of Dembele, however, will more than likely be felt for a long time.
There isn’t a ready-made replacement for the Belgian midfielder currently on the Fulham books, a player who was supremely confident on the ball; not only could he retain possession so well, his distribution was outstanding. Therefore without him, there is every chance Fulham will struggle to retain possession this season. And when you don’t have the ball, you’re vulnerable to attacks yourselves. Their defence is decent on paper though, without jumping out the page at you, so it could be a mixed campaign once again on the clean sheet front for Mark Schwarzer.
Inform West Brom will be the first team to put my theory to the test, and they are a team – as we’ve seen in their first three games under their new chief tactician – that can make full use of the ball. Manager Steve Clarke is already being lauded for the early work he has done at The Hawthorns, where both his team’s two victories have been earned so far – beating Merseyside duo Everton (2-0) and Liverpool (3-0) in impressive fashion – yet it was possibly the point registered at White Hart Lane which impressed me the most.
I thought the Baggies were exceptional against Tottenham. The home side bossed possession yet it was West Brom who created the better opportunities, ruthlessly counter-attacking their hosts only to be confronted by an inspired Brad Friedel in goal. The draw, which was earned via a stoppage-time equaliser from James Morrison, was the very least they deserved. We have every right to expect more of the same at another London ground, Craven Cottage, where they had lost on all five visits before a 1-1 draw there last season. I’m anticipating a few more goals this time around, although the final outcome may well be the same.
Prediction: Fulham 2-2 West Brom (16/1 with WilliamHill)
Match Odds: Fulham 21/20; Draw 5/2; West Brom 3/1 (Odds with BetVictor)
August 30th, 2012 / Matt - Category:
Premier League Tips
West Ham V Fulham – Saturday, 1 September 2012; 12:45 kick-off
Prediction: West Ham 2-2 Fulham (Correct Score is 14/1 with Ladbrokes; Draw 23/10 with Bet365)
Recommended Bet: Both Teams to Score @ 8/11 with Bet365
We begin the third week of the season with a local derby as West Ham, trounced by Swansea last time out, host a Fulham side who provided last season’s runners-ups, Manchester United, with an almighty scare at Old Trafford last weekend. And it is perhaps their encouraging start to the new term which has persuaded firms to quote the Cottagers as marginal favourites (@ 15/8 with PaddyPower) for this all-London affair, with the Hammers only slightly shorter in price (@ 13/8 with 888Sport) despite boasting home advantage at what will be a raucous Upton Park come lunch-time Saturday.
Indeed, Fulham do appear slight favourites according to my interpretation of the odds. You would expect to find odds of 2/1+ on most travelling teams in the Premier League, particularly those not considered to be top-six material. We should also remember that this is Fulham, notoriously poor travellers, so to see quotes as short as 6/4 on an away triumph – those same odds are the best you will find on a home win – is perhaps indicative of where these two teams are at present, with one (Fulham) setting their sights on a top-half finish and a possible assault on the European places while the other will do well to remain in the division following promotion last season as runners-ups in the Championship.
However, West Ham did open their accounts with an opening day success at home – Kevin Nolan’s scruffy goal was enough to give his side the win over a very, very ordinary Aston Villa team who were convincingly beaten 3-1 at home by Everton the following weekend. That was almost as comprehensive a defeat as West Ham’s at Swansea, where Sam Allardyce’s charges went down 3-0 courtesy of some horrific errors at the back. Yet more inadequate defending will no doubt be punished by a Fulham side who obliterated Norwich on the opening day, notching five in a 5-0 whitewash, and whom were a little unfortunate to leave Old Trafford last Saturday without a point to show for their valiant efforts after a 3-2 loss.
It should, though, be noted that for the first 45 minutes of last week’s Old Trafford contest, Fulham were completely outplayed. They were 1-0 up within a matter of minutes through Damien Duff yet ended the half 3-1 behind. They were deservedly trailing. Martin Jol’s men rallied superbly after the break, with midfielder Moussa Dembele almost single handily conducting the Fulham offensive. He was sublime, as he has been throughout his time at Craven Cottage, earning rave reviews most post-matches. So to lose a player of his quality, someone with so much ability on the ball, has to be hugely detrimental to the team’s chances of success this season, especially with the end of the transfer window looming, with the West London club accepting an offer in the region of £15million for the Belgian international from capital rivals Tottenham.
I feel for Fulham fans, who are rightly devastated at the loss of Dembele. Their woes could be compounded further should last season’s top goalscorer depart as well, with Clint Dempsey reportedly on strike in a bid to push through a move to Liverpool. Recruiting like-for-like replacements won’t be easy, either. In the meantime they do have the personnel to remain competitive: Bryan Ruiz still has much to prove; Damien Duff still has much to give, while Croatian Mladen Petric is a predatory striker who already has a couple of goals under his belt.
The loss of Dembele is likely to tell at the end of the season for Fulham. Securing a top-half finish will be a massive ask without him, such is his talent. In the short-term however, and in this match specifically, I believe they have enough about them to cause a West Ham defence which was torn apart on so many occasions by Swansea in Wales numerous problems – though it is their own defence, one which went missing for the opening 45 minutes of last week’s contest with Man Utd, and which isn’t the strongest on paper, that worries me even against a Hammers side which hasn’t come across as the most threatening thus far.
I am not envisaging defences coming out on top here, in a fixture that in recent times has had a habit of producing a healthy tally of goals – each of the previous seven Premier League contests between the two at Upton Park have ended with both teams on the scoresheet, with five of those producing a minimum of three goals. Furthermore, the most recent two finished without a winner; the draw, then, does look appealing at 23/10 with Bet365.
August 17th, 2012 / callum - Category:
Premier League Tips
Martin Jol is in his second season as Fulham boss after guiding the Cottagers to ninth place last season. He’s had to contend with the troublesome issue of Clint Dempsey this summer as the American has virtually gone on strike and stated that he will never play for the club again. The Club’s most prized asset who was top scorer last season with 17 goals has been linked all summer with a move to Liverpool but as yet, he remains in London. Away from that, the club have signed two new strikers with Mladen Petric and Hugh Rodallega joining to bolster their attack. Both are likely to feature tomorrow and will be expected to form the sort of partnership that Dempsey had with Bobby Zamora for the last few seasons.
Norwich surprised many with a terrific 12th placed finish, after two consecutive promotions, in their first season in the Premier League since 2005. The manager responsible for all that success – Paul Lambert – is no longer at the club however after taking over at Aston Villa. Chris Hughton is the man tasked with building on the foundations laid by Lambert, and the former Newcastle and Birmingham manager has won his first battle by keeping hold of Grant Holt. The striker was looking to move at the beginning of the summer but has since signed a new contract following the arrival of his new coach. The Canaries have brought in several new players including Robert Snodgrass from Leeds. The Scottish forward brings further pace and attacking intent to the club which suggests that Hughton is going to continue where Lambert left off by employing two wingers and taking games to the opposition.
Fulham have been very strong at home in recent seasons and it has been the basis of their consistent league form. Jol has, however, change the style of their play by taking a more patient and technical approach to each game. The likes of Brian Ruiz and Moussa Dembele will be all the better for their first season in England but the signs were there last season that they are very able players.
It’s also difficult for sides to maintain the same level of performance in their second season since promotion. Hughton is a very sensible manager who is only too well aware of how ruthless the Premier League can be so he will be motivated to succeed to prove a point of his own. As a club, Norwich have to adapt to not being the ‘new boys’ and that could prove difficult.
Despite the impending loss of Dempsey Fulham look very strong this season and there seems to be a growing appreciation amongst the fans of what Jol is trying to do. They often start the season well at home and I believe they have enough to secure all three points tomorrow.
Fulham 17/20 @ BetVictor
April 27th, 2012 / callum - Category:
Premier League Tips
Everton v Fulham
Both Everton and Fulham are ending the season strongly and will want to continue their good form when they meet at Goodison Park on Saturday.
It would have been very easy for Everton’s players to feel sorry for themselves and just want the season over with after losing to Liverpool in the FA Cup semi final but they have done anything bet. When Davie Moyes is your manager, players understand that they need to give everything they have in each and every game, no matter what is at stake. To their credit, the players have responded really well and last weekend’s come from behind 4-4 draw with Manchester United at Old Trafford typified the spirit and attitude which is abundant at the Toffee’s. It was their fourth, unbeaten league game in a row and was even more incredible because of the manner it came in. Despite taking the lead, Everton found themselves 3-1 and 4-2 down in the game, the latter with only 7 minutes to go. Not only did it put a massive dent in United’s title hopes, it means that the blue half of Merseyside are in with a real chance of finishing ahead of Liverpool for the first time since 2005. Moyes will be hoping they can end the season on a high over the next four matches, starting with a home win on Saturday.
Fulham have had a strong first season under manager Martin Jol and are currently enjoying their best run of the season which has seen them when six and draw one of their last 10 league matches. It’s a run which has lifted them into the top half of the table, level on points with Liverpool and just a couple behind this weekend’s opponents. Jol has changed the style of Fulham’s play by introducing a more flexible approach as opposed to a rigid formation. It seems to be working as last weekend’s victory over Wigan came against a side who had recently defeat Arsenal and Manchester United. At home they are a match for anyone as they have the ability to pin in under a lot of pressure but also being able to break quickly. This is highlighted in their record at Craven Cottage this season which has seen them win nine and drawn five of their 18 matches to date. It’s one of the best points return of any side in the division and when you consider that there has been quite a bit of upheaval in terms of management and players over the last couple of years, the consistency they continued to show has been excellent.
Everton have an excellent record in this fixture over the years. The Toffee’s have won each of their last 10 meetings in the Premier League at Goodison which is a fantastic achievement by any club. It’s a statistic which get’s churned out every time they sides meet and one I can imagine that Fulham supporters are sick of hearing about.
Clint Dempsey has been a revelation for Fulham under Martin Jol. Since Bobby Zamora moved in January, the US Internationalist has taken on even more responsibility and he has relished it. With 16 league goals to his name already, he has been linked with a summer move to Arsenal amongst others.
Records are there to be broken and eventually, Fulham will win at Goodison Park. But Everton are really strong at the moment and will be on a high after last weekend’s excellent performance at Old Trafford – they can make it 11 in a row at home to Fulham.
My Selection: Everton to beat Fulham
Best odds available: 5/6 with Ladbrokes
November 26th, 2011 / Matt - Category:
Premier League Tips
Arsenal V Fulham
Saturday, 26 November 2011 – 17:30 GMT (LIVE on ESPN)
English Premier League
North hosts West at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday as London rivals Arsenal and Fulham do battle in front of the ESPN cameras – and, courtesy of a quite stunning offer from PaddyPower, all eyes will be on Robin Van Persie.
Some would describe the move as courageous, while others may consider it suicidal, but Irish firm PaddyPower are LAYING Robin Van Persie – the Premier League’s leading goalscorer – by refunding all losing first/last goalscorer, correct score and scorecast singles on the game should the imperious Dutchman land the first blow tomorrow.
I’m guessing Mr Power hasn’t watched a whole lot of football recently. By laying the Arsenal hitman, PaddyPower are opposing one of the hottest properties in football right now, certainly in the Premier League. A player Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger freely admitted his team were reliant on for success, because of his awe-inspiring scoring prowess. So why do it?
Despite notching 31 goals in 29 Premier League appearances in 2011 – 10 in his previous 5, scoring three braces (two-goal hauls) in six at the Emirates (four if you include his two efforts at home to Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League on Wednesday), or the small matter of the 28-year-old being the league’s leading marksmen with 13 in 12… the Arsenal skipper has only netted the game’s opening goal on three occasions in the Premier League this season.
So it is actually a very shrewd move. Well, only if RVP doesn’t score first. But even if he does, those Irish folk won’t really lose a great deal; because of their glorious offer, there will be fewer bets taken on the free-scoring forward and more on the rest of the field, which means less liability and more potential profit, especially should the field triumph, as bar Van Persie absolutely anyone on the pitch could score the game’s opening goal.
In a very large and varied field, who stands out? You’d have to fancy Arsenal scoring first, surely? They’re in imperious form. Wednesday’s 2-1 victory over Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League, a result which guaranteed their participation in the tournament after Christmas, was their eighth in their last nine matches in all competitions. While last Saturday’s victory at Norwich was their fifth in a row in the Premier League.
Arch rivals Tottenham were the last team to beat Arsene Wenger’s team, at the very beginning of October, though Liverpool were the last – and only team this season – to trump the Gunners at the Emirates, at the back end of August. Fulham aren’t in the same league as those two, nowhere near, so it’s difficult to imagine them making the breakthrough – especially as they’ve only managed three away goals all season.
So we’ve narrowed it down to Arsenal players. The Cottagers will no doubt serve up a timely reminder that they should never be discounted, but that’s a risk I’m willing to take. Mikel Arteta and Aaron Ramsey – 15/2 and 10/1, respectively, to score first – are both viable options from midfield. Both like to push forward and assist in attacks whenever possible, invariably in alternating fashion, and both can certainly finish. Between them, though, they account for just three of Arsenal’s overall goal tally of 25.
I took to Gervinho (11/2) very early on. That was a bad decision. He has pace, an abundance of it, and I must say his direct style of play is refreshing, but he certainly isn’t the most talented lad you’re ever likely to come across. His final ball often lets him down and was arguably the poorest player on the pitch against Dortmund in midweek.
From set-pieces, Thomas Vermealen (16/1) will pose a major threat. The Belgian defender is an absolute monster in the air, and pretty decent on the deck as well, but he may have his cards marked by Fulham centre-back Brede Hangeland.
There is only one player left who I haven’t mentioned, and that’s whizzkid Theo Walcott. The 22-year-old is probably playing the best football of his career right now, a player who has matured so much in such a short space of time. Not boarding the plane to South Africa for the 2010 World Cup with England really hurt, but he’s worked tirelessly on his game since – and it has shown.
Finally there is an end product to those blistering runs on the flanks. Granted he doesn’t score enough goals from a very offensive position, in a three-pronged attack alongside Robin Van Persie, though that is to be expected when playing alongside a man who now calls the shots at Arsenal, in the latterly mentioned. Nevertheless, I reckon it could be Walcott’s time to shine on Saturday, as his pace in behind could be key to unlocking a staunch Fulham defence that has only conceded six times on the road.
Recommended Bet: Theo Walcott First Goalscorer @ 13/2 PaddyPower
Alternative: Theo Walcott to Score @ 9/4 StanJames
September 17th, 2011 / Matt - Category:
Premier League Tips
It would be fair to say that Fulham urgently require a maximum haul, preferably sooner rather than later. A number of surprise outcomes on Saturday has left the Cottagers propping up the table heading into Sunday’s bout of fixtures, yet there’s every likelihood of their misery being compounded as they prepare to take on high-flying Manchester City to Craven Cottage.
As a result of Blackburn’s shock win at home to Arsenal and Swansea securing their first win of the season at the Liberty Stadium at the expense of West Brom, Fulham now occupy the basement of the Barclay’s Premier League. Martin Jol’s side are also one of only two teams who are yet to record a league win in 2011/12, although that unwanted honour could be all theirs should Sunderland comply at the Stadium of Light against Stoke the same afternoon.
Critical times then in the West of London. It’s an entirely different complexion up in Manchester, though, where both clubs have hit the ground running, City very much included. The Citizens still have their 100% record in tact after four straight wins – scoring 15 and conceding 3 in the process – and despite the disappointment of only mustering a draw on Tuesday as the club made their long-awaited UEFA Champions League bow against Napoli, the general consensus is that Roberto Mancini’s men will bounce back immediately to winning ways with their fourth Craven Cottage victory in six visits.
The Cottage, though, has been a formidable venue for Fulham, where they’ve lost only one of their last eleven league contests in 2011 – though it must be said that some of the aura has evaporated since the departure of Mark Hughes. A 1-1 draw with FC Twente in the Europa League on Thursday – a match in which Martin Jol fielded several first-team regulars – was Fulham’s third on the spin at home, extending their barren start to the season (excluding those formality Europa League qualifiers).
So Fulham have it all to do against those in-form Mancunians. Personally, I’m not holding out much hope of them halting the Man City express, not even at their spiritual home. Last season City romped to a 4-1 victory in this fixture, taking an unassailable 3-0 lead within 35 minutes, and it isn’t unrealistic to think that they could match, if not better that feat on Sunday against this beleaguered Fulham outfit.
Still, I don’t see too much value in backing the visitors. Although I do like the look of Micah Richards’ odds of netting only his seventh goal for the club. The England full-back gets forward to devastating effect time and time again for City, and already, after just four league appearances this season, has two assists to his name. Only the crossbar stood between him and his first Premiership goal for almost a year last time out against Wigan at home. Looks tremendous value at 16/1!
As for the hosts, they desperately need some invention from somewhere, from someone, and from what I saw at Craven Cottage last weekend, that won’t come from new signing Bryan Ruiz any time soon. One player who did catch the eye in that fixture was ironically Ruiz’s half-time substitute, Belgian forward Moussa Dembele. The 24-year-old made 24 appearances for Fulham last season, netting just three times, but he’s gradually adapted to the hard-knocks style of the Premier League and appears to be growing in confidence with every minute he is out on that pitch.
Dembele is an extremely confident individual who pleads for possession, because he has every confidence in himself that he can make something happen. My one criticism of the forward, other than he clearly doesn’t score regularly enough, is he doesn’t try his luck as often as a player with his ability should. But he definitely has some of the latter – ability – and Jol would be a fool to leave the Belgian inspiration on the bench, as he’s about the only potential match winner in his squad by the looks of things.
Betting Selections (Goalscorers)
Moussa Dembele to Score – 5/1 WilliamHill
Micah Richards to Score – 16/1 Ladbrokes
September 11th, 2011 / Matt - Category:
Premier League Tips
Fulham V Blackburn
Sunday, 11th September 2011 – 16:00 (GMT) kick-off
LIVE on Sky Sports 1
They’ve made their worst ever starts to a Premier League season, now Blackburn and Fulham do battle at Craven Cottage in what I believe is a must-win fixture for both parties, as pinpointing their next potential wins thereafter is by no means a straightforward task.
Just one point gained from their first three league games equals Fulham’s worst ever start to a Premier League season, and they’ll host this fixture, albeit it at venue where they’ve lost just one of their previous ten in the Premiership, desperate to halt their current two-match losing streak. However, should the Cottagers fail to dispatch of a Blackburn side who remain pointless after their opening fixtures, you’re scratching your head as to when and where their first win of the season may arise.
In midweek, Fulham begin their Europa League group campaign at home to FC Twente, the Dutch champions two seasons ago. That is by no means a given. While just three days later they have the unenviable task of trying to halt an imperious Manchester City in West London, which was the setting for a City romp last season. After the frightening visit of a flawless Man City, it’s a trip to The Hawthorns for Martin Jol’s men before hosting a reinvigorated QPR in a London derby.
If you thought Fulham had it rough… Blackburn have a nightmare upcoming fixture list consisting of home clashes with Arsenal, Chelsea, Man City and Tottenham – and either side of all those excruciating fixtures are tricky trips to the likes of Newcastle, Norwich, QPR and Wigan.
Both sides urgently need a maximum haul in order to kick-start their stuttering league campaigns, so which, if either, of Martin Jol or Steve Kean – two managers who are already feeling the pressure, the latter especially – will be celebrating come the final whistle?
Personally, the draw sticks out from a mile away. I haven’t been encouraged by what I have seen from either in the early stages, in particular in the final third. Creating chances hasn’t been much of a laborious task, however converting certainly has been. Arguably Blackburn have made more of a meal of scoring, despite mustering one goal more (2) than their opponents (1).
Steve Kean’s men failed to put away either of their two spot-kicks at home to Everton last time out, and ultimately paid a heavy price with defeat. No doubt some harsh lessons were learned, but the Glaswegian remains defiant in the face of adversity and firmly believes that the first win of the season that has so far eluded Rovers is just around the corner. For his sake, it better be, because with Blackburn’s forthcoming fixtures, defeat, or perhaps even a draw for that matter, could be the beginning of the end for the Scot who this week had to respond to questions surrounding a petition from 400 fans sent to the club’s owners demanding his tenure be brought to end.
Usually I wouldn’t go anywhere near a Scot whose back is firmly against the wall – those who have painstakingly watched Scotland in recent qualifying campaigns will know exactly what I’m talking about – however I’m getting tremendous value in doing so on this occasion.
Rovers are 5/1 with VictorChandler to inflict only a second home defeat on Fulham in eleven at Craven Cottage in the Premier League. Unfortunately I’m not as brave as I like to make out, so I’m going to need some insurance. Blackburn Draw No Bet is 10/3 with Bet365 – so stake returned if match ends in a draw but deemed a winner should Rovers triumph.
Instead, however, I’m going to stoop further and back the visitors on the Asian Handicap, with Blackburn +0.5 – so a winning bet with either a draw or an away win – readily available at 13/10 with VC.
Betting Tip: Blackburn +0.5 Asian Handicap @ 13/10 VictorChandler
Blackburn to WIN – 5/1 VictorChandler
Blackburn Draw No Bet – 10/3 Bet365
David Goodwillie to Score – 9/2 Unibet (A summer signing from Dundee, Goodwillie still awaits his first Premier League goal for Blackburn, but his industry and perseverance will earn him some just rewards soon enough – it’s just a case of how soon?)
August 28th, 2011 / Matt - Category:
Premier League Tips
Newcastle United V Fulham
Date & Kick-Off: Sunday, 28th August 2011 – 13:00 GMT
Fulham fans thought club owner Mohamed Al-Fayed had found the missing piece to the jigsaw when hiring former Ajax and Tottenham manager Martin Jol as Mark Hughes’ successor, the 55-year-old Dutchman having previously been the club’s original number one managerial target before Mark Hughes took the helm during the summer of 2010. But already fans’ opinions are dithering.
The fact Fulham had to begin their pre-season far sooner than anyone else, because of their qualifying commitments with the Europa League, was viewed as a double-edged sword: Good because it meant the team should be ahead of their rivals with regards to physical conditioning, but also bad due to the fact fatigue would sneak into camp a lot sooner into the season than normally would be the case.
Judging by their performances in the league so far, I reckon it’s a fair shout to say that fatigue is already having an affect, and that Europe is only a hindrance now that the novelty of the Europa League has worn off on most supporters.
In fairness, Fulham didn’t play half-bad at home to Aston Villa on the opening weekend. Shay Given in the Villa goal had to produce a number of exceptional saves to deny the Cottagers an opening day win in fact. However, the following weekend, away at Wolves, Jol’s side were truly woeful – as Fulham invariably are when dragged out of their comfort zone, which is anywhere outside of West London. The Cottagers were dispatched with consummate ease, without so much as a fuss, by a team who avoided relegation by the skin of their teeth back in May, losing 2-0 at Molineux.
On Thursday, Fulham once again endured away day blues. A 1-0 defeat to Dnipro of Ukraine was, however, enough to see them through to the group stage of the Europa League, a competition Jol is clearly keen on doing well in this season, as he took a full strength squad across Europe to ensure their inclusion in Europe’s second tier comp was rubber-stamped with a 3-1 aggregate win.
I, like so many out there, cannot help but feel Jol has got his priorities all in a muddle. His team have made a sluggish start to the 2011/12 Premier League and could go into the forthcoming international break still without a win, possibly even in the relegation zone should his charges fail to compete at St James’. Their record there is encouraging however, with just one defeat and four wins from their last six league visits.
BUT… After their midweek Europa League exertions – and believe me when I tell you that they were made to work extremely hard for their aggregate victory in the Ukraine, surely Fulham have liability written all over them?
Confidence most certainly isn’t overflowing following their lethargic start to the league campaign, while we shouldn’t forget who we’re discussing; a team renowned for their dreadful away tendencies – Fulham have won just four times away from home in the Premier League in the last two seasons.
Plus, Newcastle have surprised us all with their solid, dogged displays so far. Alan Pardew’s men were relatively comfortable against Arsenal in their first game, drawing 0-0 at St James’, while the mood all around Tyneside has been beaming all week following last week’s Tyne-Wear Derby triumph over Sunderland at the Stadium of Light. Progress in the Carling Cup has also lifted spirits.
It’s Newcastle for me to punish a lethargic Fulham side who won’t have had much in the way of time to prepare following their hellish journey back from the Ukraine on Thursday evening.
Betting Tip: Newcastle to WIN – 6/5 Bet365
August 27th, 2011 / Matt - Category:
Premier League Tips
Newcastle United V Fulham (13:00 Kick-Off, GMT)
This isn’t a fixture to get head over heels excited about if you’re planning on nosediving into the goalscorer markets, as goals really have come at a premium whenever these two have clashed in recent seasons. There was just one last season – former Magpie Damien Duff settling matters at Craven Cottage in a 1-0 win for Fulham, three months after the two sides played out a dour 0-0 draw at St James’ Park – while there have been a paltry eight in the previous six league meetings.
One of the most turned out players in this fixture, Shola Ameobi, has faced the Cottagers on no fewer than ten occasions in the Premier League – most of those from the bench, it must be said – netting just three times.
Ameobi is Newcastle’s man main up front now that Andy Carroll has departed, which perhaps doesn’t bode well for the season ahead considering he has just three goals to his name in his last 22 league appearances. But he’ll enjoy a regular run in the team this season, barring injuries, and I have no doubt that the 30-year-old former England U21 international will end the season as Newcastle’s leading marksman. It helps that he’s lethal from 12-yards.
So Ameobi senior is my first goalscorer pick, not Ameobi junior who netted Newcastle’s extra-time winner on Thursday in their Carling Cup second round tie with Scunthorpe.
Despite last year’s corresponding fixture ending goalless, backing No Goalscorer wouldn’t be the shrewdest most you’ll ever make – there has only been one goalless draw between the two teams in 32-years (26 matches).
Clint Dempsey was Fulham’s leading scorer in 2010/2011, netting thirteen times in all competitions, twelve of those coming in the Premier League and four of which were away from Craven Cottage. The American, though, still awaits his first goal against Newcastle; however, four of the ten goals Fulham have scored against Newcastle in the Premier League were by Americans (Brian McBride with 3 and defender Carlos Bocanegra with the remaining 1).
Fulham’s towering centre-half, Norwegian Brede Hangeland, finished second in the scoring charts for Fulham last season with six goals. He’ll be a prominent threat from every set-piece, as per usual.
Instead, I’m keen on taking a chance on Andy Johnson, the mercurial striker who has been plagued by injuries in recent years but is slowly but surely regaining his confidence with every minute he’s out on that green surface. Martin Jol has started him against both Aston Villa and Wolves, without any visible reward, while he also featured prominently during Fulham’s Europa League qualifiers, bagging a few in the process.
The fact Jol hasn’t substituted him in either league game so far is a massive indication, to me anyway, that Johnson will be Fulham’s main focal point in attack this season, which will surely comes as a huge boost to AJ’s previously ailing morale.
First Goalscorer: Shola Ameobi @ 13/2 VictorChandler
To Score: Andy Johnson @ 3/1 Unibet
Match odds: Newcastle EVENS, Draw 12/5, Fulham 11/4 (SkyBet)