Plenty of speculation over what sort of Fulham team will take the field this evening. Apparently, Hodgson is quoted in the Metro as saying he will choose a ‘team with Manchester City in mind’. Before that conjures up images of the second string in Sofia in your mind, check out these comments from today’s Times:
The injury list has made it a bit more difficult. In the initial two matches, I had a very big squad to choose from and could make more changes and rest more players. This time we can’t do that.
That hints at a few more familiar faces tonight, doesn’t it?
I’ve seen that some of the papers have omitted Damien Duff from their probable line-ups for this evening. Should Hodgson’s selection mirrors theirs – and it often doesn’t – I’d be majorly disappointed. Duff was one of our most dangerous players on Monday and we’ll need his sharpness and intelligence to pose a real threat to Roma. He’s also one of the few members of the current side capable of creating something from nothing, which is a valuable commodity given the slower pace of European competition.
I’d expect Zamora and Kamara to start again up front. Zamora because his height might unsettle a continental defence and also because he played so well against Hull. The reason Roy kept Kamara was largely to play him in these European games and he’ll be hoping to sniff a goal or two tonight.
Aside from resting Clint Dempsey, the only other changes might come in defence. Stephen Kelly might replace Paul Konchesky, although the talk about his knee injury seems to have died down a bit lately. I’d like to see more of Chris Smalling, too, although Hodgson might be forgiven for sticking with Hangeland and Hughes for our toughest test of the group so far.
I also spotted that Wes Foderingham was fit enough to be on the bench for the reserves at Portsmouth on Tuesday night. If UEFA continue to refuse to let us register Pascal Zuberbuhler, then maybe the youngster will pinch the substitute goalkeeper’s gloves from Zoltan Gera.
What do you think?