Thursday, September 28, 2006

Game 6 - FFC 0 Filth 2

So my whole reason for writing this Blog was to do reports of the games I actually went to a la Alex Ferguson, and then when I finally make a game it takes me 7 days to write about it. This was always going to be tough, with half our 1st team injured and the Chavs still smarting from last seasons defeat, I couldn't see anything better than a hard earned draw and that pretty much proved to be the case. Coleman fielded a similar side to the one that faced Spurs, but with CJ as a lone striker with Routledge adding width and guile to our midfield.

Overall I felt it was a great team performance, everyone playing as well as they could in the role they were given. Most of our attacking success stemmed from Queudrue and Routledge on the left, but Brown worked tirelessly all day and despite another horrible 2 footed lunge at Ashley Cole late on was probably my man of the match. Zat also put in an excellent performance, taking on the Captains armband (for the first time that I'm aware) and the extra responsibility seemed to raise his game. The Filth were nothing special (at least for the first hour) lacking width, and were largely held to shots from distance. Our best chances though came in the 2nd half. Rosenior was getting into great forward positions, and linked up well with Volzy to fashion a good chance, but delayed just a bit too much allowing Lampard to charge down his shot. Then Collins John showed great effort to beat Carvalho to a cross field ball, and received a bruised thigh for his troubles. The resulting freekick was swung in by Franck and somehow PBD managed to place his header wide of the gaping net. We also had a fair shout for a penalty as Michael Brown slid in on Cech who never had control of the ball, and was then clearly hauled back by the giant keeper. Cerebral Halsey took the percentage choice and opted for a foul on the keeper, and to be honest I think it was a fair decision. Likewise the decision on 72 minutes to award a pen to the Chavs. Rosenior stumbled trying to keep tabs on Kalou (who had replaced the ineffective Robben) and caught the ball with his hand. You could tell from Liam's reaction he knew what he'd done, and that was the goal that sealed the game. McBride and Helgusson replaced John and Bocanegra as we reverted to a straight 4-4-2 (Obi Mikel replaced Shevchenko though I can't say I noticed at the time) but with limited options in midfield we really didn't create much more. Lampard scored again with ten minutes left as our midfield struggled to compete, and despite another penalty shout for a push on Diop in the box we'd really run out of steam. Nice touch from Mourinho to bring Bridgey on in the last minute, he received a well deserved ovation from the Fulham end, I'm sure it won't be long before he moves to a better class of club for good. Having put in a good performance against tough opposition we need to get results in our next two matches at Watford and home to Charlton. It won't be easy with our casualty list but we need at least 4 points to avoid getting sucked in to the lower reaches. I'm feeling pretty positive though, the team spirit seems to be back and I reckon if we can dig out some results our confidence will grow. COYW!

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Game 5 - Spuds 0 FFC 0

What a fantastic result, with a depleted midfield against a Spurs side desperate for a win I couldn't have asked for more. Really pleased to see Coleman/Keane taking the sensible route and filling the side with defensive experience to ensure another away point. After last seasons shambles away from home we need to get everything we can, and I felt before the match even with most of our creative options missing we could get something out of this. A Thursday night game in Prague can leave little time for recovery, and I'm sure Spurs will find it hard to win after European exertions. Another bad injury though (Boa Morte - fractured cheek bone) will mean our midfield will be looking strange for several weeks. It seems to be a season of bad injuries for big name players throughout the leagues, maybe a sign of how much football is played particularly in a season following a World Cup. Anyway four games without loss sets us up nicely for the visit of the Filth next Saturday, surely we can't repeat last seasons glory - but at least we can sing songs in praise of the man in the green pants!

Friday, September 15, 2006

Craven Cottage Newsround

Not that anyone other than me actually reads this stuff, but on the off chance someone does I've added a link to a much better Blog than my own wittily titled "Craven Cottage Newsround". It's everything mine aspires to be but isn't, a great article on there about a trip to see Slavia Prague, and lots of good info about Super Fulham.

Game 4 - Newcastle 1 FFC 2

An unexpected result that was comletely overshadowed by the injury to Jimmy Bullard. A mere three games in to his career and Jimmy has already established himself as the new cult hero and has been the driving force behind everything creative the team has achieved. I can't remember feeling so gutted about a player being injured before, it's expected Jimmy will miss the rest of the season now and I can't help feeling our season cannot be anywhere near as good as if he was playing. I guess the important thing is that he recovers well, I want to see him playing in black & white next season, with Fulham still in the Premiership.