Having taken a substantial lead from the first leg of our second qualifying against Crusaders, Martin Jol has something of a problem.
Leading 3-1 it`d be too easy to dismiss the challenge of the Irish side by throwing in a few youngsters and then suffering the consequences.
Crusaders showed, in that first leg, that they are a spirited outfit and our superiority only became apparent after seventy-odd minutes when our superior fitness levels shone through.
Therefore, we suspect, that Martin Jol will pick as solid a side as he can, at least until the game is finally put to bed with a goal or two, then we expect the changes to be rung.
One definite starter will be John Arne Riise with Jol remarking,
“Roma probably wanted to keep him but he wanted to come back to England.”
“He will play against Crusaders and he has only been here five days. He played on Sunday so he is very fit.”
Last time out Clint Dempsey and Moussa Demblele missed out through varying reasons, we don`t think tonight will be any different.
In the first qualifying round, Craven Cottage was relatively full, thanks to some enterprising marketing techniques by those that run the club. It`ll be interesting to see if the Cottage is as full tonight, even more so with the home leg being the second leg and with the tie more or less, we`d hope, sewn up.
As for the result, we expect Fulham to sail through and make the nitty-gritty stages of the qualifying competition, a competition that is proving to be amore than adequate substitute for a raft of the usual pre-season
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