Jul 4, 2020 at 3pm UK
BirminghamBirmingham City
Onomah (90+4')
Hector (33'), Odoi (34')
FT(HT: 0-0)

Gardner (30'), Bellingham (38'), Roberts (40'), Clarke-Salter (90+2')

Preview: Fulham vs. Birmingham City - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Fulham vs. Birmingham City - prediction, team news, lineups: ID:404702: from db_amp
Sports Mole previews Saturday's Championship game between Fulham and Birmingham City, including team news and predicted lineups.

Fulham square off against Birmingham City in the Championship on Saturday afternoon having ended their two-match losing streak with victory over Queens Park Rangers.

Although they remain clear of the relegation zone, Blues head into the game at Craven Cottage on a nine-match winless run in all competitions.

Match preview

On the back of defeats to Brentford and Leeds United, Fulham went from having outside hopes of claiming a spot in the top two to needing to defend their position in the playoffs.

However, those concerns have now been eased to a certain degree after an impressive comeback victory over Queens Park Rangers in midweek, establishing a seven-point advantage over seventh-placed Derby County.

Facing the same gap to West Bromwich Albion, occupants of the second automatic promotion spot, Scott Parker will now be focused on ensuring that the Cottagers remain in contention for the playoffs at a time when the teams below them are putting together consistent run of forms.

Although the absence of Aleksandar Mitrovic through suspension is a blow, it may force the rest of the Fulham squad to take on more responsibility in the final third rather than relying on a player who has netted 15 goals more than anyone else.

Providing that they can continue to get points on the board over the next two games, Parker may feel that it will prove to be a blessing in disguise with regards to the development of his talented squad.

Heading into the resumption, Birmingham felt at ease to acknowledge that Pep Clotet would be departing the club at the end of the campaign in order to pursue other opportunities.

However, collecting just two points from three matches has left Blues yet to move themselves away from a relegation battle, with just seven points separating the club from 22nd-placed Hull City.

Other teams below them would also have to improve in order to bring the West Midlands outfit back into the equation, but that remains a possibility as long as Clotet's side continue along a winless streak which has now stretched to eight matches.

At a time when the goals have dried up for Lukas Jutkiewicz and Scott Hogan, Birmingham have conceded six goals at home to Hull and Huddersfield Town, something which will naturally concern Clotet heading into Saturday's fixture.

Fulham Championship form: WWDLLW

Birmingham City Championship form: DDLDDL

Team News

Mitrovic will serve the second of his three-match ban, which should lead to Bobby Cordova-Reid taking his place in attack.

With Neeskens Kebano also suspended, it may lead Parker to select an unchanged starting lineup.

However, opposite number Clotet will likely make several changes, including handing recalls to Marc Roberts and Ivan Sunjic.

The Spaniard may opt to switch to five in midfield, resulting in Scott Hogan dropping to the substitutes' bench.

Fulham possible starting lineup:
Rodak; Christie, Hector, Ream, Odoi; Reed, Arter; Knockaert, Cairney, Cavaleiro; Decordova-Reid

Birmingham City possible starting lineup:
Camp; Colin, Roberts, Clarke-Salter, Pedersen; Crowley, Bellingham, Gardner, Sunjic, Bela; Jutkiewicz

We say: Fulham 2-0 Birmingham City

With Fulham having gotten back on track in midweek, that should act as the springboard for an improved run going forward. With out-of-form Birmingham ideal opponents at this stage, we expect the Cottagers to enjoy a comfortable afternoon.

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last updated article - 2020-07-02 16:22:35:
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