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Match Previews

PREVIEW: Fulham Vs Barnsley

22 December 2017

Next up for the Reds is a trip to Craven Cottage.

FULHAM'S FORM

After an up and down start to the 2017/18 season, the Cottagers began to find a level of consistency in November, with victories over Sheffield United, Millwall and Birmingham City as well as gaining a valuable point against in-form Derby County.

However, a 3-1 defeat against neighbours Fulham rocked the boat, as did last weekend's loss away at Sunderland, with Fulham becoming the first side to lose at the Stadium of Light in over a year. 

After recording seven wins, eight draws and seven defeats so far, the Cottagers sit 12th in the Sky Bet Championship table, scoring 27 goals and conceding 28. 

Similar to last weekend's hosts, Brentford, Saturday's opponents Fulham are a difficult side to beat on their own turf, losing just twice in their 11 fixtures at Craven Cottage.

Jokanovic

FULHAM'S BOSS

The cottagers manager is Slavisa Jokanovic. The 49-year-old Serbian was a successful midfielder in his playing days, playing for the likes of Partizan Belgrade, Tenerife, Deportivo and Chelsea whilst representing his national team on 64 occasions. 

His managerial career started at Partizan where led the Belgrade club to a league and cup double in back-to-back seasons before leaving the club by mutual consent in September of 2009.

After choosing to take some time out of football, he returned to management in February of 2012, surprisingly appointed as manager of Thailand club, Muangthong United. In his one year in charge, he led them to the title, going unbeaten all season.

In July of 2013 he was appointed as manager at Levski Sofia of Bulgaria. After poor results initially, he was relieved of his duties in October.

After a short spell in caretaker charge of Spanish side Heracles, Jokanovic arrived in England, taking up the reins at Watford. 

He guided the Hornets to the Premier League in the 2014/15 campaign, finishing runners-up in the Championship before getting moved on in June of 2015 after failing to agree to a new contract. 

A six-month spell with Maccabi Tel-Aviv followed, where he guided them into the group stages of the UEFA Champions League for the first time in over a decade, but was soon back in the Championship with Fulham, appointed in December of 2015.

He led Fulham to the Championship Play-Offs last season, and will be hoping to go one step further this time around.

FULHAM'S PLAYERS

The West London club have a reputation for their attacking brand of football and thus they've always a handful of really eye-catching forward players. This year is no different, with the likes of Brazilian playmaker, Lucas Piazon a big threat in Jokanovic's squad. 

Tom Cairney is the driving force from midfield. Captain at Craven Cottage, the former Hull City man is one of the leading players in the division in terms of goals and assists. 

Both Fulham full-backs operate more as attacking wingers. Ryan Fredericks is blessed with extreme pace on the right, whilst teenage sensation Ryan Sessegnon is having a superb breakthrough season. 

Experienced Czech international, Tomas Kalas is the rock in Fulham's rearguard, whilst 'keeper David Button has pushed his case in the past for international recognition with England.

Tom Cairney

FULHAM DIRECTIONS

At the end of the M1, turn right (west) onto the A406 (North Circular) and follow it towards Harrow for nearly 4.5 miles. Turn left (east) onto the A40 heading into London (passing close to Loftus Road and after a little over 4 miles turn right (west) onto the A402 for just about 350 yards. Here you turn left (south) along the A219 for a little over half a mile. This brings you into Hammersmith where you turn right onto the A315 and then after just 130 yards or so turn left (south) back onto the A219. Follow this road for a little over a mile, and Craven Cottage is just down the side street off to your right. 


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