Fulham vs Villareal - last preseason match

Discussion in 'Fulham FC News and Notes' started by daddude7, Jul 31, 2022.

  1. daddude7

    daddude7 Well-Known Member

    Nov 13, 2013
    I thought this one was worth a thread. Fulham's starting 11:

    1 Marek Rodak, 2 Keny Tete, 4 Tosin, 13 Tim Ream, 33 Antonee Robinson, 26 Joao Palhinha, 6 Harrison Reed, 18 Andreas, 14 Bobby De Cordova-Reid, 7 Neeskens Kebano, 9 Aleksandar Mitrovic.

    45 minutes down; 45 to go. We're down a goal, but we look really good going forward. As expected, the defense is where we fell short. I can't blame the nominal defenders for this goal, though. It was the same goal we were prone to giving up in the Championship and gave up against Benfica. A pull-back from the end line to the top of the box and the late runner. Reed was on the wrong side of the player, and Palhinha was standing around marking no one.

    Paradoxically, that gives me hope. Silva can't possibly miss that problem, and that means he'll work on fixing it. I also think that Palhinha is still out of synch with the rest of the team -- there is hope he'll assimilate in a couple of weeks. By contrast, Pereira has looked very good going forward and on the tackle. Kenny Tete much better. Robinson acceptable. Ream was solid in the first half -- our best defender. Tosin ok, but did misplay a pass dangerously in his own third.

    Bring on the second 45.
    BarryWhite likes this.
  2. daddude7

    daddude7 Well-Known Member

    Nov 13, 2013
    Match over. Overall, encouraging. We're still not solid enough in the back, but for all my moaning about Tim Ream being slow, he was our best defender. Jedi needs to be more attentive to the ball -- a bit casual. Tete came off with cramps, and I hope it's not an early sign of his hamstring problems coming back. Kevin Mbabu looks like an upgrade, though, even if only in a short cameo. Harris and Stansfield impressed me. Both need to get chances with the first team this season. The biggest surprise was BDR -- if he keeps playing like that, he'll make it hard for Silva to sit him down. There is still an important role for Cairney to play, even if he doesn't start. We were the better side, but the 1-1 isn't an unjust result.

    Liverpool next.
    BarryWhite and MicahMan like this.
  3. MicahMan

    MicahMan Administrator

    Mar 4, 2014
    I'll have to defer to @daddude7 as to whether these highlights are an accurate representation of the game, but Fulham certainly seemed to have been making more changes than Villareal:
  4. daddude7

    daddude7 Well-Known Member

    Nov 13, 2013
    Yes, we should have scored a couple more, especially Mitro's sitter that clanged off the frame. In fairness, they spurned a couple good chances, too. We were the smoother, better connected team.

    I'm impressed with what Silva has been able to build with a threadbare roster. I dread injuries, as the one to Wilson (out 6 weeks). As Silva said in his post-match interview (which somehow isn't up on the website), the players he does have are ready, but the squad as a unit is not because one can't compete in the Premier League with 16 senior players and with only two central defenders (he actually came out and said that). He probably got a call from MacKintosh or Tony Khan after. I don't think he'd quit out of frustration--he wants to build his reputation in England--but I've been wrong before.

    Sounds like Leno might join before Liverpool, but will he be ready? I suspect Rodak starts against Liverpool, even if Leno comes this week. There is probably not enough time to come to an agreement and conduct medicals for any of the center backs we've been linked to, so we're taking on Liverpool with Ream next to Tosin. But I'm still hopeful we'll get something out of the game. Adversity could break a team, but could also be a source of motivation, and I'm sure Silva is working hard to channel everyone's frustrations into the latter.

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