Back to real football this weekend, after Englands dismal displays over the last week, I’ll be hoping for greater entertainment on Saturday as Pompey travel to the cottage in search of their first away win since West Ham.
Harry Redknapp’s men should be feeling relatively fresh on Saturday, a mid -season break to Dubai a couple of weeks ago and a lack of general international action in recent weeks should have recharged half empty batteries, only Kanu and Kranjcar figured prominantly for their countries, and the over-looked Todorov got a run out for Bulgaria.
Fulham Team News:
Papa Diop will continue in midfield along with Pompey ex-loanee’s Brown and Smertin along with Simon Davis. Pembridge should return to the bench
Player to watch: Brown
If Sean Davis plays expect fireworks, last season Brown tried to break Davis’ leg and the Fulham captain and Pompey midfielder have history from their Spurs days
Pompey Team News:
Much the same as Reading I feel, Sean Davis will come back into contention against his old mates after suspension, but he will have to displace a midfield which performed admirably at the Madjeski, Harry may drop either of the international boys to the bench fearing fatigue, and Andy Cole will not figure from the bench as he has upped sticks to Brum.
Player to watch: Lua Lua
If Lua gets a starting berth I’m expecting a more vibrant character than recent weeks, he’ll be the first to admit its been a wasted season, and will want to finish on a high.
Match Facts & Stats
Great win away last season during Pompeys rise from the ashes of relegation, and a 1-1 draw at Fratton this season with Andy Cole cancelling out Zat Knights effort for Fulham
Mike Riley replaces Mike Dean, so expect more cards than you would get on bridge night down the pub.
Two teams out of form of late, but as i’m getting the chance of a rare away day at last, I’ll go for the Pompey win with a couple of goals from unlikely sources (it would be about bloody time Davis!)
Next up is Manchesters second side at Fratton, followed by a trip to Hertfordshire and Watford