Zamora out

Poor Bobby has not had the luck recently. He had a few injury problems last year, leading up to a period at the end of the 2009-10 season when he could only play for about an hour in the Europa League games, and needed an operation in May that ruled him out of the World Cup.

A minor injury a couple of weeks ago meant he was again unable to play for England, and now at the weekend he suffered a broken leg with ligament damage. Latest reports suggest he won’t be back until early 2011.All from a silly tackle half an hour into the game against Wolves.

At the same time Andy Johnson is still recovering from his knee problems and won’t be available for some weeks. Luckily for Fulham, Dembele has been scoring goals, as Gera and Dempsey have not been on top form so far this season.

It was two second half goals from Dembele that meant that Fulham took their first win of the season after Wolves went ahead in the first half. It’s strange that Fulham are now one of only five unbeaten sides in the Premiership, while Roy Hodgson is already facing questions about how he’s managing Liverpool – a disappointing goalless game that needed quality goalkeeping to stop Birmingham City winning leaves the Reds in 13th place. After only four games, Liverpool are seven points behind the leaders Chelsea, which doesn’t suggest that Hodgson’s new team are going to be winning the Premiership this season.

Summer 2010 Transfers

On Tuesday the final deadline for buying and selling players in the Premiership passed, and yesterday the club had to name the 25 senior members of the squad (I believe that young players can also play if they are not in the list).

The only transfers on the day were the sale of Paul Konchesky to Liverpool, with part of the fee being made up with two youngsters, Lauri Dalla Valle and Alex Kacaniklic. Read the rest of this entry »

Blackpool 2-2 Fulham

A bit of a lucky escape that one – Blackpool were clearly trying to take the game and the occasion for them was pretty massive – the first top-flight home game for decades.

Zamora showed how important he was, and that’s a bit of a worry as much as it is a blessing. He took the first goal with aplomb, heading in a Dembele cross late in the first half. However, Bobby came off early with a problem in his thigh, and the team seemed to collapse as a result, conceding two goals in five minutes. It’s quite likely that he won’t be fit for the next England game on Friday, which is a cruel twist of fate. Read the rest of this entry »

Fulham 6-0 Port Vale

Last season, Fulham went out of the League Cup in the second round (the first game for most Premiership sides), having put out a team mainly of second-stringers against a full strength Man City at Eastlands. Understandably, with a game the previous week in Sofia and ahead of the visits of Arsenal and FC Basel, Hodgson was not going to risk tiring out the first team in such a game.

But this season there are no European distractions, and we know that we have a squad capable of a good cup run, so it was heartening to see the first team out last night. Read the rest of this entry »

Fulham 2-2 Man Utd

The first home game of the season was a pretty amazing affair. Fulham gave the visitors too much time and space at the beginning, and Scholes was able to use a little back-pass to put the ball into the goal after about 10 minutes. Fulham came back into it during the first half, with the best chance falling to Etuhu when he raced into the box to force van der Sar into two reaction saves.

The second half saw the best action, however, and the first Fulham equaliser was a thing of beauty. Read the rest of this entry »

Bolton 0 – 0 Fulham

Away to Bolton is never a thrilling prospect, and it being the first game of the new season there was a lot a caution from the Fulham team. To add to the air of restraint, young David Stockdale was in goal to cover for an injured Schwarzer. Stockdale had a good game, the beeb website described him as ‘outstanding’, which is certainly something we may need if Schwarzer is tempted by offers over the next few weeks.

Still, it is a point gained away from home. It the easy game at home to Man Utd next weekend. After that the next league game is away to Blackpool. After their demolition of Wigan today, the tangerines are currently top of the table. Erk!

Countdowns…

It’s only two days before the new Premiership season starts, and hopefully Fulham have had time to get over the turmoil of not having a permanent manager for several weeks. Mark Hughes will be pleased that the last friendly game went so well – a 5-1 win over Werder Bremen, meaning a third German team has been defeated by the Whites in a few months.

Zamora did get a run out for the second half of last night’s international, and while he didn’t score he was certainly a threat for England and contributed to a more pressing team. Kiraly, the Hungarian ‘keeper, was busy anyway.

Gera also had a good game, being involved in the play that led to Hungary’s opening goal (even if it the ball wasn’t actually over the line when Dawson hit the deflection from Jagielka clear). Now Zoltan and Bobby can work together and really create panic among defences.

There hasn’t been much in the way of transfer activity, with Steve Sidwell’s move from Villa being cancelled by Hughes. The only buy over the summer was Philip Senderos, who is out for at least 6 months following an injury and surgery. Still, there are a few weeks left and it was this time last year I was worried that we didn’t have the squad to carry a league and European campaign.