Fulham at Chelsea

Discussion in 'Fulham FC News and Notes' started by MicahMan, Apr 27, 2021.

  1. MicahMan

    MicahMan Administrator

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    Well here we are at the sad closing weeks of the season. The month between mid-March and mid-April was devastating for Fulham's chances at Premier League survival. Fulham picked a terrible time to match their horrible opening season form - losing four straight and then getting a draw. Three of those four losses were against the exact same teams as at the start of the season: Leeds, Aston Villa, and Wolverhampton - teams that we thought Fulham had a legitimate chance of defeating the second time around.

    Fulham now has the worst record in the Premier League over the last eight matches - just five points. Over that same span Brighton got 8 points and Newcastle 11 points. Digging a deeper hole is not what we needed. Fulham aren't officially out of it yet, but they would need a miracle finish to avoid relegation. I think that dropping below West Brom is more likely at this point.

    On the plus side, Fulham has already earned more points than the 2018-19 team so they won't be the worst Fulham squad. Although closing out the season the way that squad did, 9 points over the last 5, wouldn't be too shabby right now.

    It is in this context that Fulham travels across SW6 to Chelsea. I've been unable to find any enthusiasm for this match. Fulham is going to lose. It is going to be sad. It will be on NBC at 12:30 EDT on Saturday, so there will be plenty of halftime and post game coverage about how pathetic Fulham are and how their lack of scoring doomed them. Even if Fulham manages to win, it will have the joy of an ironic cheer at the end. I'll watch, but I'm not going to like it.
     
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  2. HatterDon

    HatterDon Moderator

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    The only hopeful thing I can think of is that Chelsea will be in the middle of the Champions League semi-final in which they have a home advantage after the away goal. It may just be that they value that competition more than they care for this particular league match.

    This is simple. If we don't win, we're done.

    Looking on the bright side, there's no VAR in the Championship, so my blood pressure will be more consistent next season.
     
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  3. BarryWhite

    BarryWhite Well-Known Member

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    I hope Chelsea don’t prioritize this match but they are sitting in fourth by a narrow margin so I don’t see them not fielding a strong side.

    I’m struggling to find the motivation to watch this match.
     
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  4. jumpkutz

    jumpkutz Well-Known Member

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    I'll be at the track (Churchill Downs) working Saturday, but I intend to keep tabs on the proceedings as I can. Working the winner's circle for the second year in a row, so not too taxing. May be able to actually watch a bit of it, depending upon when the first post time is.
     
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  5. HatterDon

    HatterDon Moderator

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    Our hail storm deluge killed Saturday's classic car rally here in the Peoples Republic, so I'll be able to watch the match. I'll have plenty of epithets to hurl and Kleenex to weep into.

    COYW
     
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  6. astroevan

    astroevan Well-Known Member

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    I close on a new house tomorrow, so by kickoff Saturday I'll be knee deep in elbow grease. My phone will update me on how the proceedings go, but I'm more likely to enjoy the cleaning.
     
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  7. HatterDon

    HatterDon Moderator

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    I caught the last 40 minutes, and found myself wondering why we played like we were protecting a 2 goal lead rather than trying to overcome one.
     
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  8. BarryWhite

    BarryWhite Well-Known Member

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    That’s a fair question Don.
     
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  9. MicahMan

    MicahMan Administrator

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    Bleh. The highlights:


    Like so many matches this season Fulham started well in the first few minutes and was then totally undone early on. It ended pretty much as expected with Chelsea in control most of the match. Just marking time now until the end of the season.
     
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  10. stlouisbrad

    stlouisbrad Active Member

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    I watched and it went how I expected. No surprises. I never expected to score and they didn't disappoint. Why do they let Lookman keep taking the corners?
     
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  11. timmyg

    timmyg Well-Known Member

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    (Er, Don, have you watched Scott Parker's offense the past 2 years?)

    There's a lot that can be said about this game, but what's the point?

    A lot has been written about our offensive ineptitude, but our leading scorer only having 5 goals is quite the data point. And yep the player is BDR.

    I don't want Scott gone asap like others, but something has to give this off season. The squad is going to need a rebuild anyway, and Scott is going to have to hire an offensive minded assistant that has some say in our tactics. Stealing this thought from someone on twitter but: there are no creative passers in the team, and Scotty doesn't let his midfielders make deep runs. Unlike in the Championship, our attackers aren't capable of beating defenders.

    In this age of VAR and everything being a foul (stat alert: we commit the most fouls per game! That's right, US!) and player's athleticism being through the roof, you can very easily argue setting up defensively just doesn't work at the top flight anymore. Now, you need to be defensively sound (watch Chelsea's tape from today, they were quietly and efficiently stifling and suffocating in important areas) Teams dont grind out 1-0 results at this level anymore. It's why Tony Pulis hasn't kept a job in years, and Big Sam is realizing he has to score 3 goals to ensure a win.

    Scott was smart and pragmatic enough to fix our defense, but he's going to need to hire some outside help for our offense.
     
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  12. jumpkutz

    jumpkutz Well-Known Member

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    Strongly. Agree. Except I don’t think an offensive minded assistant is a practical, realistic answer to our scoring woes. The last time I can recall an assistant coach in any pro sport getting almost as many props for a team’s success was the ‘85 Chicago Bears, when Buddy Ryan got almost as much credit as Mike Ditka for their Super Bowl winning season. And that was for his defensive prowess, not offense. Scott Parker may evolve into a serviceable offensive manager, but right now? Umm, no. I think it’s in both parties’ best interests if they part ways. There’s an awful lot to like about him, but he needs more touch line seasoning. And it’s now hopeless, in my opinion, for our chances to stay up. We simply don’t have the ability to score enough to have any way to pull off a miracle with this side. Three up and three down. And this ain’t baseball.
     
    #12
  13. jumpkutz

    jumpkutz Well-Known Member

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    P.S. We weren’t as bad as Sheffield United or West Bromwich Albion, but we weren’t better than Newcastle, Southampton, Brighton & Hove Albion and Crystal Palace either. Palace, however, has a worse GD than all of the survivors and US below them. How the heck did that happen?
     
    #13
  14. HatterDon

    HatterDon Moderator

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    and, if Wolves can't hold on to the point, WBA will be ahead of us -- something I didn't think would ever have a chance in hell of happening.
     
    #14
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