English Premier League
Sunday 3rd March – 14:05
*Scott Parker takes charge of his first game as caretaker manager of Fulham against his old club Chelsea, who are sitting in sixth place and eager to continue challenging for a
Just one win in eight league matches in 2019 led to Claudio Ranieri being dismissed from his role as manager of Fulham, with the club languishing ten points adrift of safety in nineteenth place.
A 2-0 loss in what was a relegation six-pointer against Southampton in midweek made it four consecutive defeats, with just one goal scored during that run.
One thing that may give them confidence ahead of this match is the fact they have won two of their last four league games at home.
A 2-0 midweek victory over Tottenham cemented Chelsea’s place in the top six and leaves them just three points off a Champions League qualifying position.
That win was a fantastic way of bouncing back from a 6-0 league defeat and EFL Cup Final penalty shoot-out loss, both to Manchester City. However, one victory does not disguise the fact Chelsea’s form has been far from consistent recently and they have been poor away from home.
They have lost their last three away league matches, scoring no goals and conceding twelve during that time.
Head to Head
You have to go back to March 2006 for the last time Fulham beat Chelsea, when a Luis Boa Morte goal was enough to secure a 1-0 league victory at Craven Cottage.
They have since gone eighteen meetings, in all competition, without a win over their West London rivals.
Chelsea have won the last four meetings, including a 2-0 victory in December, and Fulham have managed just one goal in the last five.
Parker takes charge of a team in complete disarray and may want to stamp his authority straight away by making wholesale changes to an underperforming team. One player who will not be available to the new boss is defender Alfie Mawson, who remains sidelined with a knee injury.
Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri has a tough decision to make regarding his choice of goalkeeper for this match. Having dropped first choice stopper Kepa to the bench in midweek, stand in Willy Caballero kept a clean sheet against Spurs and staked his claim for a regular starting spot.
Other than that, the visitors should be unchanged from that midweek victory.
As expected, Chelsea are a huge betting favourite for the victory here. The visitors are priced at 8/15 with Betfair, who give odds of 11/2 for Fulham to pull off a shock victory. It’s 7/2 for the draw, which is what a lot of people will say is the best result the hosts could hope for.
With Fulham struggling for goals and failing to score in four of the last five meetings, it looks better value to back Chelsea to win to nil at odds of 17/10.
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