Spyin' Kop - Liverpool vs Fulham, Sat 10th November 2007

Posted by Tetti on November 9, 2007, 10:49:30 PM

Despite the gloom and doom in some quarters of late, Liverpool step out against Fulham on Saturday for Rafa Benitez’ 200th game in charge, unbeaten in the Premier League 2007/08 season.
Fresh from the 8-0 battering of the unfortunate Beşiktaş on Tuesday, the Reds face a Fulham side that has settled safely in mid table since the confirmation of Lawrie Sanchez as manager in a permanent capacity.  Sanchez of course took over temporarily from Chris Coleman after the Cottagers fell deep into a relegation fight, at the end of last season.  Fulham have much to thank us for, on their first game at Anfield since May 2007, when an  under strength Liverpool  fell to a 0-1 loss at Craven Cottage,  which kept Fulham in the Premier League. 
Fulham have not impressed on the road though and cannot have high hopes of a first away win of the season, despite the confidence boost of a 3-1 defeat of Reading last week.
Returning to Anfield tomorrow, in yet another shirt will be our own former idol, Danny Murphy, hopefully now returned to fitness and (some) form.  But hopefully not enough to trouble Jose Reina’s goal.

Liverpool vs Fulham FC
Saturday 10th November, kick off 17:15

++++++++++++++Fulham Club honours++++++++++++++++
League Division One: 2000/01
League Division Two: 1998/99, 1948/49
League Division Three (South): 1931-32
From Division Two: 1958/59
From Division Three: 1970/71, 1981/82, 1996/97
Intertoto Cup Winners: 2002
FA Cup Finalists: 1975
Semi Finalists: 1908, 1936, 1958, 1962, 2002
Anglo-Scottish Cup Finalists: 1975
RECORD VICTORY: 10-1 vs Ipswich Town, Div 1, Dec 26, 1963

RECORD DEFEAT: 0-10 vs Liverpool, League Cup Round 2, Sept 23, 1986

LEAGUE GOALS IN A SEASON (TEAM): 111, Div 3 (South), 1931-32

LEAGUE GOALS IN A SEASON (PLAYER): 43, Frank Newton, Div 3 (South), 1931-32

CAREER LEAGUE GOALS: 159, Gordon Davies, 1978-91
LEAGUE APPEARENCES: Johnny Haynes, 1952-70

To get the views of the visiting fans, I visited the Fulham fc message board  http://www.fulhamfc.com/Club/Messageboard.aspx?mode=topics&ForumID=74
and got to hear from some of their (slightly talkative) fans.  (Ok, we get the message, you don't like Baird!  ;) )

Thanks to all those who replied so eloquently!


Now that Lawrie Sanchez has had a little more time to settle in and pull the squad together after the departure of the (housewives favourite) Chris Coleman, are you happy with the change in management style on and off the pitch?

Part time Andy:  At first nervous, but there has been some good attacking performances, and we are making chances. Mind you, our fault with Coleman was making chances, but not scoring them. Not sure we've completely solved this yet...

LBNo11: The change in management was needed - I was a great supporter of Cookie, but by the Wigan game last season it was clear that he had lost the plot. Sanchez has brought more attractive football, but with an injury hit squad we have yet to see all his first choice players play together at the same time. I would like to give ‘Dirty’ a chance, not sure that he will get one, what with the blame culture engendered by “I want success – and I want it NOW” fans.

Deano: at first i wasnt happy, i didnt really want coleman to go in the first place and i thought bringing in sanchez wasnt a move that would take the club forward. at times his decision making baffles me, time will tell if he will do a good job or not but at the moment hes got my support.

Clintclintdeuce: Im not going to lie, i was calling for sanchez head when we drew derby at home. ive always said this is a results business, and were getting no decisions. hes a good first half manager, seeing wed be co top prem at the break. If he wins im happy, but to me hes on pins and needles, with the ice only a 1/2 inch thick.

Lorkswift: Pretty happy, was gutted when Coleman left, and didn't warm too much to sanchez by the end of the season. But he made some good buys, and got some good results. We've been unlucky but that's football

Mobius 323 I think the performances on the pitch have been really good. I've been to every home game this season and Chelsea and Arsenal away and the only time we've not performed is the second half against Pompey. Training-wise, it's gotta be going well due to the performances. We just need to get our results...

How has the season been shaping up so far?

Part time Andy:  Too many maybe's and if only's... Arsenal set the scene when we were 1-0 up with 10 mins to go, and not only let them equalise, but went on to lose it!

Waterboy: Been playing reasonably well but with no end product. Still can't defend.

LBNo11: Frustrating – as ever – as said the football is much better to watch, but poor refereeing decisions have robbed us of at least two vital goals and at least one cast iron penalty shout.

T:ktd: Slowly but surely getting stronger, will be force to reckon with when injured players start coming back . Watch out for us starting near end of JAN

Deano: weve been in with a chance of getting something from every game this season, with the exception of a bad half against portsmouth and for 65 minutes against tottenham,were a hard side to beat but we need to turn some of the draws into wins, espicially at home

Clintclintdeuce: All the draws have been frusterating, and for a yank, to see McBride go down early was really dissapointing, but the performance of Dempsey has been nice to see. He looks like class to me, and hes developing into a team player, something I dont think the vast majority saw during the first few weeks of the season. I like the way davies is coming around. I watched him play with Wales against i believe Lithuania, and he set up a goal for Your ExBoy Bellamy and scored one himself. I think thats when he started on his fast incline. I cant tell you how frusterating its been waking up in the early AM to see fulham lose or draw in the final ten. The reading game gives us hope, and I suppose we'll progress from there.

Lorkswift: Bad luck and individual mistakes have cost us, but 13th is where we deserve to be.

Mobius 323 We've been very unlucky. As for Fulham, we should be a lot higher than we are (challenging the likes of you lot up North :P ) and we've been constantly downed by, in my opinion (and I think just about every Fulham fan will agree with me here), stupid Referee decisions in the stages of games where we're holding a lead and doing very well. As for the other teams, it's a typical season. Twelve games in, and it's VERY close. Top two teams are tied on points and just drew 2-2 in a great game.

What are your expectations now for this season? Have they changed from day one?

Part time Andy: I expected mid to just under mid table, and I think that will be bang on. There seems to be a real gap opening this year in the middle of the table, wehreas last season this gap was only under the top 6 or 7

Waterboy: With the money spent we expected to be safe from relegation but we will still be in the fight to stay up at the end of the season

LBNo11: 12th would be good for a rookie manager with a new squad most of whom have only played with each other on a few occasions – have my expectations changed? Probably not.
T:ktd: Always thinking time would have to be on our side. Luckily squad was strengthened so with 7 players out injured we're still mid table!

Deano: i thought we would finish 11th with a good couple of cup runs at the start of the season, weve started of very average and were out one of the cups already but i still think we will have a solid enough season and finishing 11th is still very possible, hopefully with a good fa cup run.

Clintclintdeuce: I expected to finish top eight at the beginning of the year, mind you im a glass is always overflowing type of person. I could still see us challenge for intertoto or the last uefa spot, hoping that the champions league winner is out of the top four in the prem, Ie blackburn finishing ahead of the scum. I can also see us struggling if we keep biting the dust in the last stages of games. Our road form needs to be a bit better as well.

Lorkswift: Thought we'd be around 15th, but a good 8 or 10 points clear of the relegation spot. Still think that would happen.

Mobius 323 I want Fulham to get into the top ten. We should have been in that position when Coleman was here. He managed to do it in his first season, but nothing really changed in his second...

What about your new signings?

Part time Andy: Would like to see Cook play once he's better. I rate Koncheskey, and Kuqi looks promising. A bit of hot and cold from all of the rest, but I think given another 10 or so games, some more 'good signings' will be proven.

Waterboy: New signings - Probably konchesky, Hughes and Bouazza best buys. Healy, stefanovic also alright.

LBNo11: Time will tell, we have had a lot of championship players signed due to the clubs wage ceiling and low budget, so there are a few who have to adjust to the premiership standards in a short space of time

T:ktd: Konchesky, Hughes, Stefanovic and Bouazza all class. Kuqi so far is looking like a stroke of genius but only time will tell. Murphy i think needs time.
Deano: koncheskey has been a brilliant signing, ashton will be a great buy for the future. kamara was a waste of money as was chris baird. we brought in a lot of players but the jury is still out on many of them, definatley need to add again in january.

Clintclintdeuce: Baird - Bad. Konch - Good Keller-Too bad hes injuired Kamara-Cost us points, should go play for leeds, Bouazza-could be dangerous in the right situations, Stefanovic- looks about right. Healy- hot and cold, will benefit when mcbride is back, kqui- looks gumpy, very disruptive, i laugh when i see him with the ball on his feet when hes not inside 16, seol-no worries, could be supersub poor quality when he starts, murphy-again, supersub.

Lorkswift: Generally pleased with them, murphy and baird have been dissapointing though. Very pleased with Bouazza, and I feel as if Kamara has been unlucky with his dissalowed goals but I did expect more from him.

Mobius 323 David Healy has been alright. When he wasn't scoring his goals, he's not been doing too well. The thing that annoys me about him is he's a centre forward, but he runs to the wings and rarely gets past the defenders...
Aaron Hughes is a great defender. He knows his stuff and he shows that on the pitch.
Danny Murphy's been very good. He knows what to do with the ball and has done well.
Stefanovic (or however you spell it) wasn't good when he started out with us. He's gradually got better, especially his performance against Reading.
Bouaza and Davis have been good at their seperate times. Bouaza had a chance against Reading to take a shot, he ran 50 years up the pitch to turn around and run 20 yards back, but against Arsenal, he was very good. Davis has been good at times. His passing against Reading was class, but he's had his games where he's... not known what to do in the right situation...

Who do you think is your most important player(s)?

Part time Andy: :   Niemi - our goalkeeper has been our most important player since we got in the Prem, hence how things went downhill when Van Der Sar left. The rest has been a real team effort so far, with no-one consistently outshining everyone else
Waterboy: Most important players - always niemi. this season seems like davies and dempsey- healy for goals

LBNo11: The ones that are fit to play right now would be Simon Davies, Clint Dempsey, Alex Smertin. Niemi has pulled us out of the mire on the odd occasion, but he seems to have lost a bit of confidence. Aaarggh! I missed out Konch

T:ktd: The two quality goalkeepers we have in Keller and Niemi... keeping pressure on each other and making the no 1 jersey play week in week out.

Deano: niemi when his confidence is up is a major player for us. davies is having a great season as is koncheskey, and dempsey is our top scorer so i would pick them four players out, as being important for us.

Clintclintdeuce: Niemi when hes healthy, Konch when hes not suspended, McBride when hes not injuired, Dempsey when hes focused, but seems to me that it could possibly be our welsh boy davies

Lorkswift: Niemi/Konchesky/Davies/McBride

Mobius 323 Brian McBride, Paul Konchesky and Simon Davies

Your worst player(s)?

Part time Andy: Baird has been a bit poor in a few games, but maybe needs more time. Kamara has been all huff and no puff (yet). Pearce is not Prem quality, but luckily has been injured so far...

Waterboy: Worst players - Arguble but Chris Baird. Think he will be a better CB. Kamara & Seol very wasteful, Davis & Murphy dissapear during the games
LBNo11: He went to Villa.

T:ktd: Ian Pearce

Deano: Chris baird, kamara aswell has been a real dissapointment.

Clintclintdeuce: Baird, Warner

Lorkswift: Pearce/Warner/Baird

Mobius 323 Chris Baird

Do you have a particular memory of any previous meeting between our clubs?  Say, something that happened to you that day or a decision you disagreed with?

Part time Andy: Losing to you 3-0 in extra time in the Carling cup about 5/6 years ago at anfield, and then 4-2 from 2-0 up a few seasons ago at the cottage! 

Waterboy: Best memory of beating liverpool 2 years running at home, the latest saving us from relegation

LBNo11: Several, back in the late sixties when one of your fans ran on the pitch and attacked Les Barrett (because he thought he was Allan Clarke!) The time when Mark Pearson should have won an Oscar for collapsing like a sack of spuds when Ian St John swung at him (but did not connect) and ISJ got sent off. When we lost at home 0-1 to you in the early ‘80’s in the league cup second replay where our 2nd division squad had matched your teams class, until my least favourite man, Sourpuss scored at the death. The slaughter at Anfield when our goalie John Vaughn picked the ball out of the net 10 times in ’86 – and finally when you came to Craven Cottage and alongside our fans, honoured our favourite son Johnny Haynes – the silence was deafening (thank you) oh! And we beat you 2 - 0.

T:ktd: Last season would be the one that springs to mind straight away, we stayed in the premiership by beating you (allbeit understrength) at the cottage

Deano: Last season at home may have been the most important three points this club has achieved in a very long time. and a decision which i agreed with was the fact benitez played his reserves against us, resting his top players for the champions league.

Clintclintdeuce: Im a bit new to fulham so Id have to go with Dempseys goal last year. I jumped onto a table and started dancing. it was legandary for me.

Your storied club is one of the main reasons i started watching football. I was in glasgow on a study abroad trip, and I saw the Istanbul triump over AC Milan. The atmosphere in the club i was at was amazing. It was the most exciting game, of any sport, Ive ever seen

Lorkswift: -The 1-0 win last season springs to mind.

Any young up and coming players in the squad that we might not know about?

Part time Andy: Our Left and Right backs look promising, although our RB will be suspended against you!

Waterboy: Tryed out new full backs, Nathan Ashton & Elliot Omozusi against Reading. Did well seeing as it was only their first and second games respectively

LBNo11: Elliot Omozusi and Nathan Ashton are two defenders who have impressed – only 3 games between them at opposition of our current level, but looked good – a lot of work to be done of course, but they ticked the boxes.

T:ktd: Elliot Omosuzi, gifted U18 England international who's been approached by Chelsea and Arsenal but rejected overtures.

Deano: well omosouzi has played in the last two games, and after his perfomance at the weekend he wll be a serious contender for our right back postion, nathan ashton who we bought in the summer looks very good aswell, and could be a future england left back.

Clintclintdeuce: I like the way osoumzi plays. leijer from australia could be class

Lorkswift: Our young fullbacks are hot prospects. Very dissapointed that Elliot got sent off for no reason last saturday though

Mobius 323 Nathan Ashton, Elliot Omozusi? Two full-backs against Reading? Top class performances there!!

What sort of line-up will be put out against us?

Part time Andy: Maybe 442, or possibly 4411, it all depends on how attacking Lawrie wants to be
Waterboy: We will play our usual 4-4-2
LBNo11: Whoever is left that is fit and not suspended.
T:ktd: The one Sanchez believes will do the best against you!

Deano: 4-4-2 i would imagine with kuqi perhaps starting with dempsey in attack

Clintclintdeuce: hopefully a 3412 but most likely a 4211

Lorkswift: Our normal 4-4-2, hopefully with smertin who'll try and look after Gerrard. Healy and Kamara to start up front I reckon.
Mobius 323 Gotta be defensive. We can't go up there and go all-out for it.

Do you have any favourite/best chant(s) and perhaps any that require an explanation?

Part time Andy: There are all very simple, and anti Chelsea. We are very eloquent, so no explanation required....!
Waterboy: Chant i hear the most is the "come on Fulham" one which is simple and effective. Lots of anti chel*** chants

LBNo11: We don’t sing any tunes, we rattle our jewellry.
T:ktd: Nope!

Deano: andy williams- cant take my eyes of you has been adapted into a fulham song and i like that. anti chelsea songs are always good aswell.

Clintclintdeuce: I sing Come On Fulham, and people here think im crazy. They think im singing for shirts made by Oxford & Fulham

Lorkswift: Expect the anti chelsea chants.

Mobius 323 I sing every game, but I don't have a favourite chant. I sing 'em all :D

Where do you expect Fulham -  and Liverpool to finish in the Premier League?

Part time Andy: Fulham 12th, Liverpool 4/5th
Waterboy: Thinking 4th of 5th for Liverpool and us to be scrapping in the lower half of the table.

LBNo11: 12th and 4th respectively.

T:ktd: It's hard to say but things are getting better, winning 3-1 shows we can win by more then 1 goal. And although we haven't won many we've only lost 1 in our last 8 premiership games and we won our last one. Liverpool have a good squad but seem to be lacking in performances now.

Deano: liverpool i thought at the start of the season would be major contenders for the league, but i think its between arsenal and man united now, you will battle it out with chelsea for third place. as long as we stay up im happy im going for 11th-14th for us

Clintclintdeuce: I thought that Liverpool would challenge for top spot in the league this year. I have been dissapointed by Benitez stupid style of management. Your not puting your best foot forward every game. I see liverpool 3-4-5 all depends on how blackburn continue, i think theyre top shelf this year.
I like fulham to go from 7 to 12 this year. I think the transfer window will see a strong CB canidate come thru, and when we get healthy, we will have a top class product on the field
Also, if your not going to use crouch, weve got a place for him

Lorkswift: Fulham - 15th
Pool - 4th

Mobius 323 Fulham: 10th
Liverpool: 3rd

Which Liverpool player will you fear the most?

Part time Andy: :    Torres if he plays, and Gerrard

Waterboy: Liverpool have many dangerous players. As we have no pace at the back i will say Torres, Kuyt or Voronin

LBNo11: The ones that wear red shirts.

T:ktd: I think it would be dumb and naive to say you fear one more then another, I would like to think at Fulham every game we go into we fear noone but respect everyone!

Deano: gerrard is back on form after some bad perfomances and when he is on top of his game he is the best in the world, our centre midfield is very weak at the moment aswell which is worrying.

Clintclintdeuce: I fear Gerrard. I love Hyppia to score us an own goal.

Lorkswift: Torres, Gerrard, Crouch in that order

Mobius 323 I'd say Steven Gerrard. Everytime he gets the ball 30 yards out, you gotta wonder what he's gonna do next...

Care to predict the score?

Part time Andy: :    2-3 A shock result in Fulham's favour (I wish...) Seriously, 2-1 or 2-0
Waterboy: ) i'll Go for 3-1 Liverpool

LBNo11: Head says 4-1 to youse – heart says we may nick a draw.
PS: Be Gentle!
PPS: Can we have Steve Finnan back…
T:ktd: I would like to think a score draw. 1-1.. 2-2

Deano: we will score im sure of that but i think your due a home win so can see you beating us 2-1

Clintclintdeuce: In perfect world, dream land, i saw the score 1-4 to fulham. HAHAHA
Honestly, I feel if we get the first goal, which we do the majority of the time, we have a good shot at nicking a point , maybe even three. Hopefully you guys get tired out by Beskitas tonight. Maybe even rest your players on saturday!

Lorkswift: Heart says 1-2, Head says 2-1

Mobius 323 I'd have to say... 2-2.

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