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Premier League

  • August 18, 2012
  • • 10:00 AM
  • • Craven Cottage, London
  • Referee: M. Oliver
  • • Attendance: 25062
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Premier League Preview: Fulham - Norwich

Premier League Preview: Fulham - Norwich

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The Norfolk side travels to Craven Cottage to face Martin Jol's team on the opening day of the campaign and the new boss at Carrow Road will be confident of getting off to a flyer.

  PROBABLE LINEUPS

FULHAM

Schwarzer
Riether, Hangelaand, Baird, Riise
Ruiz, Diarra, Dembele, Duff
Rodallega, Petric
NORWICH CITY

Ruddy
R Martin, Turner, R Bennett, Tierney
E Bennett, Howson, Johnson, Pilkington
Snodgrass
Holt

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Fulham welcomes Chris Hughton's Norwich to Craven Cottage on Saturday, with the new Canaries boss Chris Hughton hoping he can get his tenure at Carrow Road off to the perfect start.

The Norfolk club heads into the game off the back of a decent preseason campaign, which saw it suffer just two defeats at the hands of German clubs Hertha Berlin and Borussia Monchengladbach.

The new manager has managed to inherit the vast majority of the squad which finished in 12th place last season and also acquired former Leeds skipper Robert Snodgrass for 3 million pounds during the summer, in addition to giving star-striker Grant Holt a three-year contract extension.

Spanish left back Javier Garrido has arrived at Carrow Road on a season-long loan from Lazio and could be pushing for a start on Saturday.

Republic of Ireland midfielder Wes Hoolahan joined up with Giovanni Trapattoni's squad to face Serbia as a replacement for the injured Darron Gibson, but the Norwich man suffered from an Achilles' problem himself and looks set to be sidelined for the season's curtain-raiser.

The Canaries will also be without defenders Elliott Ward and Steven Whittaker for the trip to west London, in addition to midfield pair David Fox and Jacob Butterfield.

Martin Jol's side, meanwhile, will be hoping to improve on its ninth place finish last season and push for a European place this time round after a period of instability at the club, which has seen three managers in as many seasons.

The Cottagers suffered just one defeat during their preseason campaign against Championship newcomers Charlton Athletic, but the Dutchman has been forced to completely rebuild the Whites' frontline after the departure of Bobby Zamora and Andy Johnson to rivals QPR.

Last season's top goalscorer Clint Dempsey also looks set for pastures new, but Jol has managed to bring in former Wigan striker Hugo Rodallega to partner Mladen Petric up front. Brian Ruiz endured a torrid time at the Cottage last season since his arrival from Twente, so will be hoping to deliver in the forthcoming 2012-13 campaign.

The Cottagers are likely to be without midfielder Simon Davies for the clash, who is out with a neck injury, while Aaron Hughes (ankle) is also a doubt, as is Philippe Senderos after being sidelined during preseason.

  DID YOU KNOW?
  • Fulham sent the Canaries down in the 2004-05 season, after a 6-0 demolition at the Cottage condemned Nigel Worthington's side to life back in the Championship.
  • The two sides have met on 38 occasions, with Fulham winning 17 and Norwich 11. Ten have been draws.
  • Fulham, meanwhile, scored an impressive 15 goals in its seven outings.
  • Norwich hasn't won at Craven Cottage for 26 years; its last victory was a 1-0 win in 1986.
  • Chris Hughton's side have kept four clean sheets in its seven preseason games.
  • Norwich goalkeeper John Ruddy (pictured right) became the first Canaries player since Robert Green to play for England when he appeared for 45 minutes against Italy on Wednesday.

Last Five Matches

Head To Head

Fulham

Norwich City

Wins
3
1
1
Wins

Betting & Predictions

Reader's Predictions

Fulham FC FUL
Fulham FC Fulham
Draw
Norwich City FC NOR
Norwich City FC Norwich City
62%
20%
18%

Top 3 Predictions

Fulham FC FUL
2 - 1
Norwich City FC NOR
Fulham FC FUL
2 - 0
Norwich City FC NOR
Fulham FC FUL
1 - 1
Norwich City FC NOR

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