This afternoon, Fulham mark their return to the top-flight of English football with a home game against Crystal Palace.
As well as being our first game of the 2018 / 2019 season, the fixture will also be the 500th top-flight home match for the club, the first of which was way back in 1949.
As an aside, the fixture will also mark the return of a familiar face to the Cottage, our former boss Roy Hodgson, we’re sure the Fulham faithful will give Roy the reception he deserves after the success he had whilst in charge of our club.
When it comes to the starting eleven this afternoon, the Fulham faithful will be keen to see who Slavisa Jokanovic opts for. The summer transfer window saw a plethora of players arrive giving our squad a touch of class and depth.
However, what we can tell you is that Slavisa will be without the services of two of his defenders. The new signing, Alfie Mawson, is still recovering from a knee operation whilst Denis Odoi will be serving the last game of a suspension.
Talking about the clubs’ ambition for this season, Slavisa is quoted by the BBC as remarking:
“It’s important to show ambition and desire to stay up – that’s our first target.
“We’re building a team to be competitive at this level. We’ve made a great investment in the transfer market and I’m hoping we’ll see an immediate benefit.”
And so are we.
But what do the record books tell us to expect as far as this fixture goes?
Well, two facts would seem to indicate that Fulham fans are in for a treat:
1 – Crystal Palace have won on just the 1 occasion in their last 8 fixtures against Fulham, a 2-0 win in 2004, at Selhurst Park.
2 – The last time Crystal Palace won at Craven Cottage was in a second-tier fixture back in 1986 when they won 3-2.
As for the officials today, look no further, the following have been appointed:
Referee – Mike Dean
Assistant Referee – Ian Hussin
Assistant Referee – Dan Robathan
Fourth Official – Robert Jones
Ahead of the game, why not vote in our poll, it’s a simple who is going to win this afternoon affair but consider which option you vote for carefully.