This Saturday, Fulham will be home playing Everton at Craven Cottage. The game takes place at 3PM UK Time and 10 AM EST. The game will be on Fox Soccer Plus taped delayed on Saturday at 4 PM EST in the United States. However, there is another option online. You can watch the game on Foxsoccer.tv live.This is a subscription based service that I would recommend.
This game will not be easy for Fulham. With the injuries to Bobby Zamora and Moussa Dembele, Fulham will need some other players to step up to be the goal scoring threats against Everton.
Everton have started poorly this season. They currently are 19th in the table and have only two points. However, Everton always seem to be a tough opponent for Fulham.
Last season the two clubs split the games. Fulham beat Everton 2-1 at Craven Cottage. Everton beat Fulham 2-1 at Goodison Park.
The away match had a controversial ending. In the last minute of stoppage time, Tim Cahill went down inside the box, and a penalty was awarded to Everton. Mikel Arteta scored on the penalty kick which gave Everton the victory. However, the controversy surrounding the game involved the play before Cahill was taken down in the box. The ball seemed to go off of an Everton player before going out of bounds. The call however made by the referee was that the ball went off of a Fulham player. Everton threw in the ball, and eventually that play led to the deciding goal.
David Moyes is the manager of Everton, and is a quality coach. Players to watch include Tim Cahill and Mikel Arteta. Tim Cahill is a dangerous Australian midfielder. Last season he scored 10 goals. He is fighting an injury so his status for tomorrow is unclear. Mikel Arteta is another midfielder that can cause havoc to an opposition. Last season he scored 6 goals for Everton.
As I do before every match I do my 5 "keys" that I hope will lead to 3 points for Fulham. Below are " My 5 Keys To Victory For Fulham Against Everton"
1. Fulham need to do a much better job defending set pieces. Fulham, in their last two matches gave up goals on set pieces. This is an issue that was a problem last season. Fulham's defenders need to do a much better job at marking their players against Everton. Mark Schwarzer definitely needs to handle these situations much better as well. He has looked uncomfortable, and out of place lately on these plays.
2. Mark Schwarzer needs to return to his high level form. I don't know if this is a mental issue with Schwarzer right now. It has been reported that he wanted to leave Fulham this summer for Arsenal. I don't know if this issue is playing any role in his bad play. Regardless, it is important for himself, and the team that he starts playing well. He has been very poor on set pieces, and generally does not look like the confident goalkeeper Fulham fans are used to seeing. Fulham need him at his best against Everton.
3. Fulham need to contain Tim Cahill and Mikel Arteta. These two players have the ability to control the game for Everton in the midfield. They are both dangerous in scoring situations. Fulham need to keep these players in check.
4. Fulham really need a lead going into the half. Fulham have proven to be able to come from behind in the second half. However, it is very difficult to continually come from behind. I think it is very important that Fulham are up at the half. They could really dictate the game. Everton right now are struggling. If you can get up on them in the first half, Everton might find it very difficult to fight back on the road in the second half. Everton did come from behind late in the game at home against Manchester United. However, at Craven Cottage they might find it much harder to come back from a deficit.
5. The strikers need to step up tomorrow and be scoring threats. Tomorrow should be very interesting to see who Mark Hughes has playing up front. My guess is you will see Zoltan Gera and Clint Dempsey as your strikers tomorrow against Everton. The strikers need to be counted on to create scoring chances. This could be Dempsey and Gera's game to really shine.
I honestly see this game as a struggle. Who will do scoring for Fulham? Will the Cottagers be able to defend set pieces? I am hoping we have positive answers to these questions tomorrow.
I am predicting a 1-0 victory for Fulham against Everton at Craven Cottage. I still think the Cottagers have enough quality to grab a win at home.