Often Partisan

GAMEDAY – Fulham at home

Gary Rowett’s Birmingham City face up to a Fulham team today who are looking to avenge the 5-2 thrashing at Craven Cottage earlier this season.


Fulham come into the game lying in 20th position, just one point above the drop zone and 18 behind Blues. They are winless in five games and have won one away game in twelve in a run stretching back to last October.

Slavisa Jokanovic will be hoping that he can call on Chris Baird after he appears to have shaken off a knock while Cauley Woodrow will be hoping for another start after having recovered from a broken foot.


Diego Fabbrini may miss out having injured his toe in training but both James Vaughan and Nicolai Brock-Madsen have both returned to training again after injury and will potentially be vying for a spot on the bench.


Darren Handley is in the middle for this game. He’s taken charge of 26 games so far this season, handing out 91 yellow cards and four reds. His last Blues game was the 0-0 draw with Norwich in January 2015, in which he booked two Norwich players.

Suspension Watch

One red card (three match suspension served): James Vaughan

9 Yellow Cards: Maikel Kieftenbeld
8 Yellow Cards: Stephen Gleeson
6 Yellow Cards: Diego Fabbrini and Jonathan Grounds
5 Yellow Cards:  Jon Toral, David Davis and Paul Caddis
4 Yellow Cards:  Michael Morrison and Paul Robinson
3 Yellow Cards: David Cotterill,  Clayton Donaldson and James Vaughan
2 Yellow Cards: Jonathan Spector and Neal Eardley
1 Yellow Card: Tomasz Kuszczak

The cutoff date for 5 yellow cards to attract a suspension is November 30, 2015
The cutoff date for 10 yellow cards to attract a suspension is March 13, 2016

Fantasy Football

Often Partisan has linked up with new BCFC sponsors Sportego to bring you weekly fantasy football competitions. Simply create an account at www.bcfcfantasyfootball.com, pick who you think the best five players will be in today’s game – and the person with the best combination of five players wins two hospitality tickets for the Brighton game.  Can you beat my picks?

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35 Responses to “GAMEDAY – Fulham at home”

  • Dave Mann says:

    As I’ve said its a must win game , draw or defeat and it’s over in my eyes so all guns blazing today and three points an absolute certainty if we’re to keep in the mix , can’t see any changes from the dingles game so same again I think . KRO

  • Mitchell says:

    After hopeless shooting against Wolves last week it would not be so brave for GR to ditch the high ball to Donaldson and go with two front runners in Vaughan and Don. Maghoma and Cotterill wide and Davis,MK in the middle. Only then if this all misfires then we need to act before Thursday. Arthur and VSO other options but for goodness sake give them enough time to make an impact. We will all know by 3.20 if we are in good shooting shape.

  • Dave Mann says:

    I would love to see us go 4-4-2 to start to see how it goes but we all know that our manager won’t do that so can’t see many or any changes to be honest mate .KRO

    • ChrisG says:

      I agree 100% with 4-4-2 Dave but I don’t think we’ve got 2 fit strikers, Fabbrini is rated only 50/50 but if he is fit then maybe push Torel up with the Don & have Davis & Fab central midfield with Mags & Cotts out wide, if we can’t score with all our best attackers on the pitch we might as well throw in the towel now!!

      • StaffsBlue says:

        We could go 4-4-2 with Donaldson and Toral up front. Or, in a 4-3-2-1…


        Caddis Morrison Robinson Grounds

        Davis Gleeson Maghoma

        Fabbrini Toral


        • Dave Mann says:

          The old Xmas tree formation , interesting . KRO

          • StaffsBlue says:

            It would make us solid in the middle and give us a bit of flair up front. Our two best trackers are Davis and Maghoma and we need to take care of McCormack and Dembele. As soon as they enter the final third, get on ’em like a dog on a bitch. :)

        • ChrisG says:

          Staffs, how about 3-4-2-1
          Morrison. Robbo. Grounds
          Caddis.Keiftenbeld. Gleeson. Maghoma
          Caddis & Maghoma can either push forward or back when attacking or defending.

  • Pods says:

    Two good calls from Dave Mann and Mitchell.
    This is a must win game, nothing less as we are playing catch up. We cannot rely on the game in hand, this should be a bonus.
    Lets go two up front.
    Lets not forget Fulham are also desperate for points.
    I go for a 2-1 blues win.


  • rkboosh says:

    Need the win so no reason to go 3 in midfield as we did vs the dingles. This is the game I think he’d have been tempted to try Fab and Toral from the start but if injured I’d say Maghoma for MK as the only change

  • KeepRightcroydOn says:

    Does anyone know if that lad who left our academy seeking wealth and fortune in Fulham has broken into their first team yet?

  • StaffsBlue says:

    Like Dave, I think if we don’t get 3 points today, our play-off push is over for this season. I can’t see the 4 teams above us not picking up points today and Sheff Wed, Ipswich and Cardiff can top 60 points by 5pm. Although we have a game in hand, it’s not 3 points is it?

  • Dave Mann says:

    I will not be happy with anything less staffs so if my Saturday evening is to be a good one it as to be a win of any sorts though a performance and a goal or two will top it off nicely . KRO

    • StaffsBlue says:

      I think that if we’re going to be in the mix for the play-offs, today’s game is the last chance saloon. We’ve just about hung on for the last two months, but if we’re going to make that push, it has to start today. It’s all well and good the manager and players saying we can do this and do that. Well talk is cheap. Show us.

  • Pods says:

    Does anybody know what players Gary Rowett may be looking at, because after the lone window shuts thats it.
    I hope he is looking at a forward.

  • Texas Pete says:

    I saw Boro v Hull yesterday and I can imagine it was similar to the wolves game. Some good chances after good build ups in a tight game. All chances missed. (Until the 92nd minute).
    The commentator said it is increasingly difficult to get a win at this stage of the season. It does appear that points & goals are slowing up for everyone. The team that hits a winning streak in April will make it into the playoffs and that includes us and Preston.
    With 8 games it is going to be a fast and furious April. I hope we have the stamina. We need 2 wins to get back in the mix.

  • .KC says:

    Just hope we go in to this game with some positivity. We seem to give the opposition to much respect , particularly in interviews reported in the Mail and don’t start playing until half time ( Hull the exception ). Hope GR can get something ( anything) out of the January signings and BM. The competition would be healthy and give our tried if not always trusted something to think about.

  • oldburyblue says:

    All week certain people have been criticised our striking skills. Have they not watched European, Premiership and Championship matches and seen the number of “easy” chances missed by so-called superstars worth millions. Toral and Donaldson are as good or probably better than most in this League in the roles they perform. I predict that they will both score today.

  • If Fulham play five at the back , and we play the long ball to Donaldson I think we will be here till summer trying to score , got to be 2 up front , GR is right it would be OTT to go kamakasi to win but I think like the rest 2 up front would be best , and to spend more time in the other half would be more healthy , as giving the opposition more than 5% possession more than us is giving as said the opposition too much respect .KRO

    • StaffsBlue says:

      We could combat the 5 at the back by playing 4-3-3, but it would probably mean playing both Toral and Fabbrini. We’re certainly not going to go over them, with Dan Burn in there, so we’ll have to go round or through them… so we’ll need a bit of trickery in there.

  • StaffsBlue says:

    Same team and formation as last week. Vaughan on the bench.

  • StaffsBlue says:

    With Derby winning, I think we’re competing with Sheff Wed, Cardiff and Ipswich for 6th place now. A win today is vital. Come on you Blueboys!!

  • Pods says:

    I think we have blown it.
    Very poor performance today

  • ChrisG says:

    Game, Set & Match. If we can’t put away a chance from a yard out we don’t deserve to get in the play offs. The officials were very poor again today but that’s no excuse. I have to question Rowetts thinking leaving Maghoma on the bench yet again, I thought Vaughan battled well when he came on, would of liked to see VSO come on instead of Buckley. We have 9 games left & I think Rowett should just swallow his pride & go 4-4-2 for the rest of the season & see what happens.

  • Pods says:

    Good call ChrisG

  • I see Feeney has been loaned to Ipswich , we need a very entertaining team that is like a goal machine ,the team is quite stable now , and we have the basis of a good squad to kick on with , no shots on target at goal in the first half again ain’t going to win us silver , no goals means defenders start to feel that their efforts are being wasted , and a red light appears , fans get fed up , and gates tail off . sponsorship drops , TV appearances drop , interest in buyers weakens , profits fall , I don’t blame managers to play safe the way that they are treated , but I feel GR has the talent to take us all the way if he is brave enough to show the red rag to the bull , come on Gary give us all a few Ole’s , KRO

  • Pods says:

    Gayle of cristal palace on loan for the run in.

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