Fulham v Villa

Friday 1 February 2002

Fulham take on Aston Villa at Craven Cottage on Saturday (Kick off 3pm)


The Villans will be looking to secure only their 3rd win in 18 visits to the Cottage. Losing 10, drawing 5 and winning just 2 of the last 17.

The last time the two teams met at Craven Cottage was over twenty years ago, in November 1974 to be precise. The Whites running out comfortable 3-1 winners in a Second Division clash.

Fulham are a tough nut to crack at home, but a lack of goals has cost the Cottagers vital points that could have seen them pushing for a place in Europe.

After Wednesday's defeat at Ipswich Fulham find themselves looking both up and down the league table. Three wins and its back dreaming of Europe - three defeats and a relegation battle looms.

Aston Villa have an average recent record on the road, collecting 1 win and 3 draws from the last six played. The Villans's have scored 8 goals in these games, but conceded a massive 10.

Fulham's 31 points from 23 games sees them lie inside the top half of the table, in 10th position. Aston Villa's 36 points from 24 games sees them lie inside the top half of the table, in 7th position.

Fulham: P6 W3 D2 L1 F8 A5 Pts11
A Villa: P6 W2 D3 L1 F8 A7 Pts9

Sequence statistics:

Fulham 4 games since last home draw.

Aston Villa 4 games since last defeat.

Villa captain Paul Merson has called for chairman Doug Ellis to keep players and coaching staff informed about his plans for the club following the surpirse resignation of manager John Gregory.

Merson admits he is surprised that Ellis, who came under fire from fans during Wednesday's 0-0 draw with Everton, has not held a meeting to make everyone aware what lies on the horizon in the week since Gregory quit.

Fulham Boss Jean Tigana was so annoyed with his players after Wednesday night's defeat that he ordered his team in for training on Thursday, despite not returning from East Anglia until the early hours of the morning.

Tigana refused to comment after the Ipswich match - but players leaving Motspur Park yesterday made it clear that they'd been told in no uncertain terms that their performance at Portman Road wasn't acceptable.

Sean Davis and Lee Clark are both expected to be unavailable through injury leaving Tigana thin in midfield.