West Brom v Fulham – Match Preview

Mark Schwarzer (Fulham)Fulham will be desperate to try to inject some form into their season as they sit perilously close to the relegation zone and there would have been a role reversal expected of where these two teams currently stand at the beginning of the season.

Martin Jol’s side are dangerously flirting with relegation as they sit in 14th place with just one win from their last 12 Premier League games.

The Cottagers have regularly been associated with poor form on the road and this season has been no different and they will have a tough task clasping any points away from West Brom.

Steve Clarke has his men well drilled and they have won seven games at the Hawthorns so far this season and it has been the cornerstone of their success. This record is on the same level as defending champions Manchester City at home.

The Baggies did lose last time out at Old Trafford to current Premier League leaders Manchester United. This did mean they slid down the table to 7th in the table as their fourth defeat in seven has halted their surge towards the Europa League places.

This should not mean that West Brom will be short for confidence going into this fixture though as their overall form has been good and they will be looking to avenge the 3-0 setback they suffered at Craven Cottage in September.

Clarke has to check on the fitness of several key members of his side. Defenders Jonas Olsson (groin), Steven Reid (ankle) and Goran Popov (hamstring) and midfielders Youssouf Mulumbu and Claudio Yacob (both hamstring) all were unable to feature at Manchester United, so will be closely monitored.

George Thorne will be hoping to impress again in midfield following the recall from his loan period at Peterborough.

Fulham are sweating on late checks for Mahamadou Diarra, Mladen Petric and Damien Duff to see if they can make this one. They missed last Saturday’s defeat against Swansea and Martin Jol admitted they were unlikely to play again tomorrow.

Mark Schwarzer should return from a neck injury to replace David Stockdale in goal, who had a patchy game against Swansea, so this should be a huge boost to the side.

No team has collected fewer points over the past six games than Fulham, so they will need to start picking up points and soon.

Prediction: West Brom 1-1 Fulham

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