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Premier League

  • March 1, 2014
  • • 10:00 AM
  • • Craven Cottage, London
  • Referee: M. Clattenburg
  • • Attendance: 24577

Premier League Preview: Fulham - Chelsea

Premier League Preview: Fulham - Chelsea

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Felix Magath takes charge of his side for the first time at its west London home, while the visitors will be looking to maintain their lead at the top of the Premier League.

Fulham will seek to boost its flagging survival hopes and dent Chelsea's title ambitions when the west London rivals clash Saturday.

Felix Magath takes charge of a home fixture for the first time when Premier League leaders and neighbors Chelsea visit Craven Cottage this weekend, but the German faces a daunting task with the club in an alarming run of form.

Fulham has failed to win in the last seven league games, a run that has left it rooted to the bottom of the table and four points adrift of safety.

Magath came within four minutes of winning his first match in charge in last Saturday's visit to West Brom, only for Matej Vydra to spoil the welcome party in the closing stages and earn a 1-1 draw.

There appears to be little evidence to suggest that Magath's second game in the Fulham dugout will be any more successful, with Fulham winning just one of the 25 Premier League meetings between the sides, while Chelsea has triumphed on 14 occasions.

A large part of Fulham's problems stem from a leaky defense, with its back line having conceded 59 times in the league this season, more than any other side in the top flight.

By contrast, table-topping Chelsea has the sternest defense in the Premier League, with Jose Mourinho's men allowing just 21 goals.

Chelsea has not tasted defeat in the Premier League since a 3-2 loss at Stoke at the start of December, a run that stretches 12 matches.

The Stamford Bridge outfit is at the top of the table by a solitary point, with Arsenal right behind. Chelsea needed a 93rd-minute goal from veteran midfielder Frank Lampard to defeat Everton last time out in the league.

Mourinho's team has had a quick turnaround in fixtures, having secured a 1-1 draw at Galatasaray in the Champions League on Wednesday.

But if the Portuguese's charges make a slow start, the visiting fans have no need to panic as Chelsea has recovered more points from losing positions than other side in the Premier League, collecting 14 when going behind.

Fulham has no fresh injury worries ahead of the match, while Chelsea is likely to be without David Luiz who has a muscle injury.

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Fulham FC FUL
Fulham FC Fulham
Chelsea FC CHE
Chelsea FC Chelsea

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Fulham FC FUL
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Chelsea FC CHE
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