Newcastle v Fulham – Premier League match preview

Once upon a time there was atmosphere....

Bringing back the scarves against Fulham.
If there is one side that seems to have the measure of us in recent times it has to be Fulham. Top four excluded of course.

Last season brought a return of one point from the two games as the two sides played out a 0-0 draw at St James’ Park with Fulham winning the return at Craven Cottage 1-0 thanks to a strike from Newcastle old boy Damien Duff.

However it was an improvement on our fortunes in the relegation campaign when we lost 2-1 at Craven Cottage and 1-0 on home turf in our final home game of the season. Howard Webb has a lot to answer for disallowing a perfectly good Mark Viduka goal that afternoon. I’ve watched it many times since and I still can’t see what the problem was.

That aside, you have to go back to 2008 to find our last victory against the Cottagers – a 2-0 win in July of that year which followed a 1-0 victory for Newcastle at Craven Cottage, with the recently departed Joey Barton grabbing an injury time winner from the penalty spot if my memory serves me correctly.

Hopefully this time around will be different although fans will understandably be anxious to see the response of the players after the departure of yet another player in the shape of Joey Barton. They will have to pick themselves up quickly and regroup, and the game on Sunday will provide the perfect opportunity for them to do just that in front of a home crowd armed with scarves attempting to bring back the atmosphere to St James’ Park.


Mike Williamson and Hatem Ben Arfa are both out through injury whilst Shola Ameobi and Steve Harper are both rated as doubtful due to respective hip and knee injuries.

Cheik Tiote will return to the side along with Jonas Gutierrez after both were rested against Scunthorpe in midweek and obviously we’ll need to bring someone in to replace QPR’s #17 Joey Barton. With that in mind I’d probably go with a team like this.

Tim Krul, Danny Simpson, Steven Taylor, Fabricio Coloccini, Ryan Taylor, Gabriel Obertan, Yohan Cabaye, Cheik Tiote, Jonas Gutierrez, Leon Best, Demba Ba.

Obviously you could play Sylvain Marveaux instead of Obertan although I feel that playing him too much after an injury is asking for trouble, especially when you consider that he is probably knackered after playing the full 120 minutes at Scunthorpe on Thursday.

As for the strikers, well you can take your pick really. I’ve put Best in there but it could easily be Peter Lovenkrands in truth. I just happen to think that Best is a little better than Lovenkrands. I’ve also put Demba Ba in there on the basis that he needs games to get his fitness and form back so has to get playing time somewhere along the line.


John Arne Riise will miss the match after being stretchered off in Fulham’s Europa League qualifying tie on Thursday with a leg injury. Simon Davies has been ruled out for five months so, fairly obviously, won’t be included. Bobby Zamora is doubtful for the match.

Fulham lost their last league match 2-0 at Wolves last weekend where they lined up with a teamsheet of:

Mark Schwarzer, John Arne Riise, Brede Hangeland, Philippe Senderos, Arran Hughes, Damien Duff, Danny Murphy, Dickson Etuhu Pajtim Kasami, Clint Dempsey, Andy Johnson.

Facts and stats

Fulham have the edge in matches between the two sides having come out on top 26 times to Newcastle’s 24 victories. There have been 13 draws between the two sides. A win for Newcastle would signal our best start to a Premier League season since 1995.

Cheik Tiote avoided being booked for the first time in six matches last week against Sunderland. Must do better.

This will be Fulham’s 11th competitive game of the season. They have kept 10 clean sheets in their last 15 games although 64% of goals that they have conceded since the start of last season have been in the first half of a game.

Steven Taylor has made more defensive blocks (six) than any other Premier league player so far this season, and if the defence can manage another clean sheet it will be our best defensive start to a league campaign for 50 years.


Whilst I recognise that Fulham are in European competition it’s worth pointing out that they didn’t qualify through league position. Essentially it doesn’t matter as I’d take the Fair Play route into Europe aswell if offered, although with Cheik Tiote in the side I’d say our chances of qualifying that way are slim to none.

This is one of those games where we fell over last season so it will be interesting to see what happens. In my view Fulham are in that group of teams that we should be looking to beat at St James’ Park although in reality it doesn’t always work out like that.

A win would be great though and would be just the tonic to end another bad week with and would send us into the international break with a points return of seven from nine available. If you’d have offered me that at the start I’d have snapped you hand off. Let’s wait and see though. We need to score goals first.

Howay the lads!

Date: Sunday, 28th August, 2011

Time: 1pm kick-off

Venue: St James’ Park

Referee: Kevin Friend

31 thoughts on “Newcastle v Fulham – Premier League match preview

  1. Have a feeling we will win this one, totally agree with the viduka goal. I actually went to the game and I was delighted when it went in. Always hated Howard Webb ever since then


  2. I was at the game aswell. And Mark. I was more than delighted 😆

    Subsequently I was more than angry when it was disallowed 👿


  3. Pardew cannae surely pick Ba. Best at the front with Vuckic in the hole.
    The rest as you say Toonsy


  4. Haha, same. It didn’t help on the journey home on the train we stood for the first couple of hours back before finally getting a seat. Also that point would have helped us out a lot that year.

    Still hate Howard Webb 👿


  5. I feel that our current choice of strikers are all kind of similar (except maybe – cough – Nile Ranger) so I’m not sure we should EVER be playing 4-4-2. At least not yet. If we sign a striker more suited to that system fair enough.

    I would be thinking about who we could play up front behind a target striker. Vuckic and Sammy Ameobe both seem to drift out wide a bit, as might Obertan. I’d think about Gosling or Vuckic though, supporting Ba or Best. You’re probably closer to what the team will be thiough.


  6. “Meanwhile, Demba Ba is participating in Ramadan”

    From The Chron. They make it sound like group sex 🙄


  7. As you say, I`d go with the same team. Ba is a decent player but so far been bloody shocking——-got to stick with him and hope he finds some form.


  8. Adam – I just think that Fulham are defensively sound so if you just play one striker they’ll snuff him out between Hangeland and Senderos. At least if there is two they have something else to think about. Then the midfield need to support.


  9. Could the Ramadan fast be the reason Ba has seemed so totally out of it?

    By the way, I see a lot of comments that have already written him off entirely. Is that not a wee bit premature?

    Munich Mag–I’ve seen reports that a bunch of Prem teams are in for Papiss Cisse. 15m Euros is, what, like 13m pounds? How do you rate him? Do you think he could bang in 15+ in the prem?


  10. ZOE more to the point webb hates us,on that goal he was the 4th offical in the game before when we scored a goal like that but was high-lighted on t.v. over and over as a foul,he thought it was the same ploy (which it wasnt)
    hate refs that pre-judge,we will never get anything off webb 👿


  11. Ye, I think Fulham have a good chance of beating us now that Senderos doesn’t have to worry about Joey cumming in hard and cumming in his face… 😆 😆 😆


  12. on ba looking at his games for w/ham,they did seem to attack all out which suited him,pity they had nee m/f or defence,but he has shown he can find the net at other clubs,to early to judge imo


  13. Just put the Villa game on. its half time.
    Jamie redknapp was asked who has impressed you most.
    Answer Emille Heskey must be a storting game if he is the best player on the pitch. needless to say I am turning it off


  14. I hope that geezer that was complaining about punctuation last night doesn’t read my posts 😀


  15. I see Nile da gangsta Ranger ha dedicated his latest misdemeanour to Joseph the philosopher Barton 🙄


  16. TLR thats one thing that really gets my goat,the spelling police 👿 said before ime sure it puts some fans off comeing on and makeing comments


  17. FSOTC@10….Cisse is a good striker, but 15 mill euros is a lot of money, and would be a risk in my opinion. He isn’t a striker who scores outstanding goals with shots from outside the box or classic headers, more a nippy mobile striker who due to the way that Freiburg play scores more goals on the break in counter attacks, scores tap ins, but the bloke defintely knows where the goal is. Cannot see him appearing at the toon though to be honest..


  18. Chelsea have signed Mata and are still pursuing Modric if they are sucessful quite fancy an approach for McEachran on loan. Good idea? 🙄


  19. ranger would be better suited to UFC than NUFC ffs… just caps off a swell week in geordie land… thats ranger a goner.. they will canel his contract now i expect.
    i also think that AP is getting naffed off with not getting his signings in as he knows he has spewed out so much shit about it all over the entire window. i woner if AP will throw in the towel on thursday morning?


  20. Craig I think he would get his ass kicked in UFC, I was one off the ones calling for him to get a chance last season as I thought that might have helped channel his energy.
    But its clear that his head isn’t right so the club should look to cut him adrift as he has just proved time and again he is just a muppet that thinks he is a gangsta


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