By Billy the Dog McGraw
Fulham is a diminutive principality on London’s north coast, and is the only football ground in London which is built underwater. [It isn’t – they are building a stand over the water you stupid turnip.] The club is run by the ghost of Henry Norris, who after he took over Arsenal in 1910, was a major force in both clubs, and mayor of Fulham.
The club climbed from the fourth tier in the 1990s to the top tier of the cake and is owned by Mafco Holdings, based in Bermuda which is a triangle in the Atlantic. Mafco is operated by Mohamed Al-Fayed who is an awfully nice man.
They won the Southern League in 1906 and 1907 and have also won the Intototototototo Cup [Don’t start being a silly Billy]
Mr Wenger spoke about his English (and Welsh) players ahead of the Fulham game saying, “The trend is changing. I have good young English players who play: Kieran Gibbs, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Carl Jenkinson, Jack Wilshere, Theo Walcott. And it is not my fault if Ramsey is Welsh!”
He also spoke up for Giroud: “He gave a lot until now, and for his first season he is doing extremely well because he has a fantastic attitude, he has a positive mind,” our Lord said. “He has scored 17 goals in all competitions, 11 in the championship, for a first season that is quite good.”
And on Alex Oxlade-C: “He’s doing very well. I believe he has moved forward this season and you will see that next season. He is still very young but you can see now that there is more urgency in his game.
“He’s less of a boy than he was a year ago. He is becoming a man. When he comes on, he plays to affect the game and he has the capability to do it.”
For this game Fulham have Riether doubtful, or we might say he’s rather doubtful!. [That’s enough wit for now – Ed] and injuries to Duff, Dejagh and Diarra, with Frimpong unavailable as he’s on loan. The leading scorer is someone called Berbatov with 13.
Their recent CD [We call it record Billy – their record] (starting with the most recent) is a not very inspiring LDLWWD
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Our recent record is DWWWWL
We have Rosicky still doubtful and Fabianski and Diaby injured. Cazorla, Wilshere, Oxlade-Chamberlain have been mentioned in dispatches as all needing tests, but quite what sort of tests I have no idea. A Levels are starting soon, so maybe its them. [Don’t be daft and just get on with it – Ed]
Here’s on possible line up
Sagna, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Monreal;
Walcott, Wilshere, Cazorla,
Or maybe better written as this
Sagna, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Monreal;
Walcott, Giroud Wilshere,
Subs from Mannone, Gibbs, Jenkinson, Vermaelen, Coquelin, Podolski, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Rosicky, Gervinho, That’s nine – perm seven and you get
Mannone, Gibbs, Jenkinson, Vermaelen, Coquelin, Podolski, Oxlade-Chamberlain
Just so difficult to fit everyone in these days.
Ten big factors about Arsenal and Fulham.
1: In the last four games with Fillem up (as we used to call them – oh what wit we had in our youths)[No you didn’t – Ed], Fulham have won three and one was drawn.
2: We’ve lost once, drawn three and won seven in our last 11 Premier League plays [you know it “games” not “plays” – write properly or you’re out].
3: In the last 10 games that Martin Jol has come up against the almighty Lord Arsène Wenger, Mr J has 1-1. [No, he has won one. God this is tedious.]
4: The next goal conceded by Fulham will the be the 100th during manager Martin Jol’s rain [it’s reign Billy, Mr Jol is not a wet thing that falls from the sky, although…].
5: Arteta is now the most effective penalty taker in the league having hit six and scored with five. The missed one was against Fulham.
6: Fulham have one clean blanket [stop it Billy] clean pillow case [you daft bugger you know its a clean sheet], in the last 12 home games.
7: Since the start of 2010, Arsenal have won just three of their 13 London derbies away from home in the Premier League (L8 D2).
8: There is no point 8. [Billy I am warning you…]
9: Fulham have been saved by deforestation [woodwork] 18 times this season.
10: Dimitar Berbatov has scored 13 Premier League goals this season, including four in his last four.
Now the referee: Andre Fisherman [Marriner].
Below the chart shows first Arsenal’s premier record up to a couple of weeks ago. The next line is Arsenal when Marriner is in charge. Then the next two rows show Fulham, and then Fulham with Marriner in charge.
As the final column shows, we do better than average under Marriner and Fulham do close to average under Marriner.
For Fulham Sidwell returns having missed three games after being sent off against Queens Park Ranglers. [Rangers]
Arsène Wenger’s bedtime TV this week will have been Fulham v Chelsea and what went wrong for Fulham, which was pretty much everything just before and just after the tea and cake break. [It’s the interval Billy – please try and use proper terminology].
Arsenal 3 (Giroud 2, Podolski) Fulham 3. November 2012
Fulham 2 Arsenal 1 (Koscielny), January 2012
Arsenal 1 (Vermaelen) Fulham 1, Premier League, November 2011
Mr Wenger on Fulham:
“They are a good side who everybody takes seriously. They have a good technical level. Martin Jol plays with good football philosophy. He is from the Dutch school and so they always have a good positive attitude.
“He has bought the players who suit his game and who can play his game. Berbatov is at the heart of their creative side. He can score and he can provide so it’s important that we keep him very quiet.
“But Bryan Ruiz did well the other night, Steven Sidwell played well too and they were very solid at the back. I remember we played a 3-3 at home and we missed a penalty in the last minute. They played very well here and, for me, they have done well overall.
“But then we have put a fantastic run together ourselves. We want to continue that. After the Tottenham game I told you we had no room to drop points and that’s where we are now. We do not have to look at the history, just the performance of the day.”
So there you have it, or if not, you don’t
- Calciopoli – Could it happen in the Premier League? – Part 1
- Club finances
- How knowing who the referee is can help you beat the bookies. Mike Dean: a case study
- What is wrong with PL refs? Case study: Clattenburg
The full index of articles in order of publication is now available here.
- Woolwich Arsenal: The club that changed football – Arsenal’s early years
- Making the Arsenal – how the modern Arsenal was born in 1910
- The Crowd at Woolwich Arsenal FC: crowd behaviour at the early matches