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Fulham v Hull City preview

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19 Oct 2009 10:35:39

Fulham v Hull City preview

Jimmy Bullard returns to face his former club as Fulham and Hull City both look to climb away from trouble. Fulham have two games in hand on many of their Premier League rivals but are still languishing in the bottom five of the table with just seven points. Roy Hodgson will feel his men deserve to be slightly better placed, having been frustrated by Arsenal and West Ham in their two most recent fixtures. Fulham created plenty of chances against Arsenal but lost 1-0, while they battled back from a goal down with ten men at Upton Park before Junior Stanislas' last-gasp strike sealed a 2-2 draw for West Ham. Kagisho Dikgacoi was the man sent off against West Ham and the South African midfielder will be suspended for the clash with Hull. Hodgson has no other new injury worries but Toni Kallio is still sidelined with an Achilles problem. Fellow long-term absentee Simon Davies is also out but could be back in contention for the Europa League clash with Roma on Thursday. Hull news Hull have been boosted by the return to fitness of Bullard, who suffered a cruciate knee ligament injury 37 minutes into his first game for the club in January. The midfielder had only just sealed a move from Fulham but Hodgson hopes he will be given a good reception by the crowd on his return to Craven Cottage. Bullard has built up his fitness with a number of outings for Hull's reserves but may not be considered ready to start. Defender Anthony Gardner could also come into contention after recovering from a knee problem that has kept him out since August. Hull's squad is now nearing full strength, although USA striker Jozy Altidore could miss out after only returning from international duty over the weekend. Ian Ashbee (knee) is the only major long-term absentee, with Richard Garcia (knee) close to a return. The Tigers claimed a much-needed 2-1 victory at home to Wigan prior to the international break to relieve the pressure on manager Phil Brown. They will climb out of the relegation zone with a win or draw against Fulham, although they have only picked up a single point away from the KC Stadium so far this season. Possible starting XIsFulham: Schwarzer, Pantsil, Hangeland, Hughes, Konchesky, Gera, Murphy, Etuhu, Dempsey, Johnson, Kamara. Hull City: Myhill, McShane, Sonko, Dawson, Zayatte, Barmby, Kilbane, Hunt, Marney, Vennegoor of Hesselink, Geovanni.


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