Fulham vs Crystal Palace Preview: London duo vie for opening day win

Fulham vs Crystal Palace Preview: London duo vie for opening day win

After falling to seven defeats from their opening seven games last season, Hodgson will be hoping his side can get off to the perfect start when they travel to Craven Cottage to face newly promoted Fulham on Saturday afternoon.

Brandon Sayer

Roy Hodgson leads his Crystal Palace side into the new Premier League season on Saturday afternoon when they travel to Craven Cottage to face newly promoted Fulham.

Eagles keen to avoid repeat of last term

The Eagles will be hoping to get off to a better start this season than they did last as they started with seven consecutive defeats which left them in disarray.

Hodgson though produced a miracle to lead the Eagles to an 11th place finish last season which saw the English manager win manager of the season at the end of season awards.

Cottagers back in bigtime

It's not an easy opening fixture though for the Eagles as they face a strong Fulham side who have recruited extremely well in the summer as Slaviša Jokanović looks to build on his side's playoff final win in May.

The Cottagers made it the Premier League after defeating Aston Villa at Wembley in May 1-0 with the winner being scored by Tom Cairney.

Fulham will be hoping to establish themselves back in the big time after four seasons away in the Championship and they will feel with their summer recruitment that saw them spend over 100 million, they can have a really good season.

West Londoners edge head to head

Palace have only managed the one win in their last eight meetings against Fulham which came in 2004 when they defeated the Cottagers 2-0 at Selhurst Park.

Palace's record at Craven Cottage is even worse though as they have not won their since 1986 when they won 3-2 when the sides were both in the second tier of English football.

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Jokanović has a number of summer signings which he can call on for the game, including Jean Michaël Seri, Andre Schürrle and Aleksandar Mitrovic.

The Fulham boss will be without new signing Alfie Mawson though as he is out until September after undergoing knee surgery at the end of last season.

Dennis Odoi is another player who will miss the game as he serves the final game of a suspension which he picked up in the playoffs at the end of last season.

Crystal Palace 

Hodgson will also be able to call on Palace's summer signings with Cheikou Kouyate, Vicente Guaita and Jordan Ayew all in contention to play.

On the other hand though, Max Meyer will have to wait to make his debut for his new club as he lacking match fitness after not playing any games since the end of last season.

Scott Dann, Jason Puncheon and Connor Wickham will also miss the game due to knee ligament injuries they picked up a while ago.

The referee for the game is Mike Dean with the game kicking off at 3pm BST.


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