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[Archived] Rovers 2 - 1 Fulham

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Well the previews are flooding in thick and fast it appears, three up now and we haven't even played a game. blink.gif Do remember that when I wrote this I thought I wouldn't be putting it up until after the West Ham game, so thought the season would actually be officially underway.

Well the football season is underway and life can once again return to normal. After a long summer of being linked with players left, right and centre and attempting to get that sporting fix from tennis, rugby, cricket and athletics we can finally turn our attention back to events on the hallow turf of Ewood Park.

For a first home game of the season we face a Fulham side that has changed little during the transfer window from the side that we played in our last game of the 2003-2004 season. Apart from losing perhaps their best, if not certainly one of their most influential players, they have had a few relatively minor comings and goings. Perhaps the one piece of good news is that this year we need not fear the chance of Andrew Cole scoring a goal against his old club.

Our encounters will Fulham over the past few seasons seem to have always turned out to be significant, and are almost always good indicators of the state of our season. Just last year our 2-0 away win was the turning point in our fight against relegation, the time when Souey’s Sissys turned into Hughes’ Heroes. While our emphatic 4-0 win at Craven Cottage a couple of seasons ago was when Souness’ side perhaps reached its greatest point, and the only game any of us will remember Hakan Suker for.

In many ways though, our clubs are the total opposites of one another. Though we can both consider ourselves to be two of the smaller sides in the division, based on fan base, stadium and media coverage, they are the flashy Londoners and we are the unassuming boys from Lancashire. When promoted they claimed that they would soon be challenging the likes of Manchester United for the title, we just hoped that we would stay up. Harrods United have always been the slick team, nice to look at but never quite fulfil either the potential or the hype. We go about our business and no one really cares, apart from when we’ve done something horrible like upset an arrogant Portuguese man.

Hopefully this season we can continue to separate ourselves from the likes of Fulham, teams who are exactly what the media and the rest of the Premiership would like them to be. We may not always be pretty, nor pack the stadium, but hopefully this year we will see a continuation of what we achieved last term, and that would include getting results.

Finally, my last point for any visiting Fulham fans who may think I’ve talked ourselves up too much: at least when we had a sugar daddy we did it right…

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Nice one Eddie... we're certainly well organised this season when it comes to gettting the previews in on time. Good job!

Out of the first three fixtures this is the one I want us to win the most. It's important to establish good home form early and there's always been a tense rivalry between the two sides since we went up together.

Hopefully Bellamy will make this one and we'll knock 3 past whoever has undertaken the massive task of replacing Van Der Sar.

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Fulham still have Malbranque and Boa Morte. We couldn't cope in May so why should we do so now? However, I expect Sparky will find a way of stemming the damage but finding a way of getting the midfield to make dangerous passes (dangerous to the opposition, not dangerously reckless like yesterday) from open play will be beyond the coaching staff.

At least we don't have to worry about defending an unbeaten start to the season.

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I am going to go for my first prediction of the season and say we will win 2-1.

But I can see the total opposite happening too. Here is the hoping for a victory against a team who will most likely be battling relegation by the end of the season and we might be doing the same if we repeat yesterdays appaling showing.

2-1 with Bellamy to score his first and MGP to score the second.

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Fulham always do well at Ewood. We never win or draw at Upton Park and that continued yesterday, and Fulham always fo us over at Ewood. I can't remember every rsult, but I still have nightmares about the hit and run 2-1 at ewood when we got promoted and last season when they tonked us. I'm not the biggest believer in fate or superstition, but it seems to hold true in football, and I think we'll lose 2-1.

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