Ahead of the visit of an in-form Fulham, TEB had a chat with the guys at Cottage Talk to find out about their season so far, thoughts on the game and much more.
Q. What did you make of the game between the two sides at Craven Cottage earlier in the season?
It was a tough loss as I feared the match would go the way it did with Fulham controlling the play, but I knew Palace would be dangerous on the break. The good thing is I feel Fulham learned a great deal from the match and will be making the proper adjustments for the upcoming match.
Q. How has this campaign been for Fulham so far?
Well, it started very badly, but I guess that was to be expected with the quick turnaround and Fulham still in need for adding upgrades. Once they got the players they truly needed, the defence became very solid and Fulham became difficult to beat. As the season progressed, slowly the points started coming, and I can honestly say I feel Fulham can beat anyone except for Manchester City.
Q. It looked like it would be a long season for Fulham but having showed some fight there is a chance of survival – how did things turn around?
As I just mentioned it came down to the recruitment and it took some time for the team to come together. Once the defence became solid, the points followed and now it is about being more clinical to turn draws into more wins.
Q. Whatever happens this season, are you hoping Scott Parker remains in charge of Fulham?
I want Parker to be the manager moving forward for next season. He has evolved as a manager and I expect him to be the manager next season. He has learned from his mistakes and is willing to make changes when needed.
Q. How was your business in the January transfer window and do you have needs that have not been addressed?
The major need was a striker and they addressed that with bringing in Josh Maga on loan. Only time will tell if he is the striker the team needed but I am encouraged by what I have seen so far.
Q. Who has been the stand out player for Fulham so far this season?
I think you have to say goalkeeper Alphonse Areola. He has been excellent and he is probably one of the best in the league right now. He does not give up many goals.
Q. What do you make of Palace this season?
Palace are pretty consistent and that is what I expect from a Roy Hogdson team. With that said I think Palace are too reliant on Wilfried Zaha and without him are a different team. However, Palace are a team I have much respect for.
Q. It has been a tough time for everyone but football fans and clubs have certainly played their part during the pandemic and pulled together which has been particularly pleasing, right?
I could not agree more and we are lucky that we have had the ability to have football right now as it has taken our minds off of the hard times in our world with the pandemic.
Q. Name one player from each team that you believe will be a threat to the opposition in this match.
I will go with Lookman for Fulham as he is always a threat when he has the ball at his feet. He is not clinical enough but if he is on, he will be a handful in this match. I know Zaha has been injured but if he is back for this match, he is the game changer overall. I think he is that important to Palace.
Q. …and finallly, your all important prediction?
I am predicting a 2-0 Fulham victory as I think the momentum of of last week will continue on Sunday. I think Scott Parker will have his team prepared for Palace and make the proper adjustments from the first match between these clubs.