AFTER a frustrating 0-0 draw on Tuesday night where they had the better of the chances against Hull, the Lions head into this derby still looking for their first away win of the season.
Last weekend’s 2-2 draw at Sunderland was arguably the closest to that Neil Harris’ men have come, and they know that those first three points on the road need to come sooner rather than later.
Harris couldn’t ask for a better Championship fixture for his players to be fired up for as he takes his squad across the Thames to West London to face Fulham.
The early season promotion favourites have not lived up to expectations so far, but a thrilling 5-4 win over Sheffield United in midweek will certainly give them confidence.
Seventeen-year-old full-back turned winger Ryan Sessegnon got a hat trick against the Blades, and he is certainly a player Millwall will have to nullify if they are to take three points back to The Den from Craven Cottage.
Lucas Ball spoke to Cottagers fan James Andrew this week.
Why do you support Fulham?
They were the closest club to where I was born. I was born in Hammersmith and lived nearby and back then that sort of thing seemed to matter when picking a team. Not so much now.
There was something about Fulham that made me want to support them. It was the early 90s so it certainly wasn’t anything on the pitch! But I’ve been lucky, there have been more ups than downs in my time as a Fulham fan.
What’s your favourite season supporting Fulham?
I’m sure the vast majority of fans would go for the season we got to the Europa League final in 2009-10 – and that was a great season.
But 2000-01 holds a special place for me, the season under Jean Tigana when we won promotion from Division One to the Premier League. The team, the style of play, everything made that such a memorable season. That answer may change to ‘next season’ if we were to go and do the same again.
After an exciting win in midweek, do you expect your boys to be more up for this one?
I’d be worried if the team were not up for any game they play this season, especially a London derby. But hopefully a win like that will give them confidence after a run of disappointing results.
What are your expectations for the season given the current position?
It’s going to be tough to match what we did last season. I know people say this every season, but the Championship really is a tough league.
And this season I don’t see any teams running away with it, or getting cut adrift at the bottom, so anyone can beat anyone. If Fulham could get themselves in the top half and in touching distance of the top six by Easter then they may have a chance. But for that to happen they have to start winning games at home.
Who will be Fulham’s danger men?
After his midweek hat-trick against Sheffield United, Ryan Sessegnon should be full of confidence and his pace will always frighten defenders.
But Tom Cairney is the man who makes Fulham tick. He has been injured for a lot of the season, but he’s back now and hopefully that will give the players a lift.
Which Lions players will you have to watch out for?
George Saville seems to be in good form at the moment, his two goals last week (albeit slightly fortuitous) along with his debut for Northern Ireland will surely give him some confidence.
What’s your predicted Fulham line-up and formation?
I suspect there may be a few changes from midweek, but I’ll go for this:
Button; Fredericks, Ream, Kalas, Odoi; Johansen, McDonald; Ojo, Cairney, Sessegnon; Fonte
Finally, a score prediction?
Despite our poor form at home, I’ve got to back Fulham to win, but we will concede. So, I’ll go Fulham 3-1 Millwall.