Swansea v Fulham: Cottagers to survive Welsh trip unscathed


CHAMPIONSHIP specialist James O'Rourke (@JamesOR1) shares his thoughts on Friday night's match-up between Swansea and Fulham.

Swansea v Fulham | Friday 29th November 2019, 19:45 | Sky Sports

Our Friday night viewing comes from the Championship this week and fresh off the back of a midweek card as Swansea and Fulham again take to the field having just played on Tuesday. Swansea earned an away point at Huddersfield to now make it three without a win, whilst Fulham gained a third successive victory when defeating Derby 3-0 at Craven Cottage.

Swans boss Steve Cooper elected to freshen up his side for their trip to West Yorkshire by making four changes as they looked to bounce back from a poor home loss to Millwall. Whilst it did at least maintain their unbeaten away record this season and it was an improvement from Millwall, it still leaves Cooper with much to ponder now a resurgent Fulham head to the Liberty.

Scott Parker will have been delighted with how his charges performed in front of their fans once more with a thoroughly dominant display over the Rams. Derby didn’t manage a single shot on target on the night, whilst the Cottagers went ahead after seven minutes and never really looked back. They’re starting to find their groove after previously winning one in five prior to this three-match winning streak.

Perhaps the biggest puzzle for Cooper and Swansea to solve is their home record. We’ve known it to be so strong for quite a number of years now, and towards the start of this season that again looked to be the case. They started the campaign winning their first five at home in all competitions, but since then things have gone backwards by winning one in six, although that was over arch rivals Cardiff.

Nevertheless, Cooper will be worried about how the goals at home has started to dry up. In this six game run, they’ve scored only three times in comparison to eight conceded. They’re ultimately not working the opposition goalkeeper enough as they’ve only averaged just over four shots on target in this spell, which ultimately is not enough.

It is especially a concern with Fulham coming to town in one sense. Although it could be argued that Parker’s side do seem to reserve their best football for Craven Cottage. Their away record is a little inconsistent considering they’ve suffered defeats at both Barnsley and Stoke, but they did pounce late to win at Birmingham in their latest away assignment.

Fulham aren’t the biggest of scorers on the road as they’ve netted just one in their previous three, which was a Mitrovic winner at Birmingham. They do at least have back-to-back away clean sheets to their name, and considering Swansea’s struggles in front of goal of late that could further serve them well.

If this game was to be played maybe a month or two ago, my first instinct would be to look towards goals given how Swansea were in top form and Fulham always look like creating opportunities. However, I do suspect this will be a bit more tactical.

Swansea are looking to define themselves again and Cooper will again likely make some changes to try and curb this slump at home. Fulham aren’t the same away as they are at home, which is understandable, but it does take something away from them in attack.

Considering Swansea’s home issues at present, I will back Fulham Double Chance alongside Under 3 Goals using the bet-builder, which is priced at 7/4 (Bet365).

Six of Fulham’s eight league away games this season has actually contained two goals or fewer, which again highlights how Parker sets his teams up differently compared to at home. Seven of Fulham’s ten home games featured Over 2.5 goals, so I anticipate this being quite tight and tactical.

Best Bets

Swansea v Fulham – Fulham Double Chance and Under 2.5 Goals (7/4 Bet365)

About Author

Since leaving university I've worked as a Research/Football Performance/Betting Analyst. I live and breath all things football. This has gradually helped me with my betting when looking for value and ultimately, winning selections. I've experienced both the bad, and more recently, the good supporting Lincoln City, with whom my weekends aren't the same without.

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