Friday, February 22, 2008

Fulham v West Ham United preview

When I say preview I could be over selling it. This is just a chance to talk about the forthcoming game which is my first live match for five weeks. It seems like ages. The last time I saw Fulham play was the dispiriting loss to Arsenal on the 19th Jan. Since then we have signed six or seven new players (none of whom I've seen play yet), have won our first match under Roy Hodgson and have started to look more like a team capable of avoiding the drop.

There's a very good preview from the West Ham view point on
Knees Up Mother Brown. KUMB don't mention it but I read somewhere (forgotten exactly or I'd have given you a link) that the Hammers may go with a 5 man midfield. They're a decent side who are more than capable of achieving a higher position than the one they currently occupy. That said I'm sure they'd settled for a point on Saturday and filling the midfield would make it more difficult for us to break them down. I'm a fan of playing 4-4-2 and I feel that if we're to get the win we desperately need we will need to play two up front. We could be taking a risk playing 4 against 5 in the middle but as Leon Andreasen stated on the Offal, we're going to have to work very hard to get the results we need. Fortune favours the brave!

Both Hughes and Bouazza are back in contention for us, and with Eddie Johnson completing 60 minutes for the reserves earlier in the week we've got plenty of options up front. I'm hoping for a team that will look something like this; Niemi; Salteri, Hughes, Hangeland, Konchesky; Dempsey, Bullard, Andreasen, Bouazza; McBride, Nevland. That said I don't think Roy's a man who gambles unless he knows he needs to so I wouldn't be surprised to see Murphy fill out the midfield with McBride or Nevland ploughing a lone role up front. Whatever the side I'm really looking forward to it. Hope we take the game to them and don't play too cagey.


colin said...

I have a feeling we'll see 4-4-2 at home and the now-familiar 4-2-3-1 on the road.

If West Ham does go with a 4-5-1 (which they have in recent weeks), it will be interesting to see if we can continue to control possession.

Chopper said...

I hope you're right. We played 5 in midfield against Arsenal but that's understandable. Not sure how we lined up vs Villa but I'd like us to be a bit more positive in our other home games.