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Rupert Wyman 2nd Dec 2009 - 12:49

Cottagers are Ful of it at home in Europe

Fulham entertain CSKA Sofia at Craven Cottage in the UEFA Europa League on matchday five. In eleven European home encounters the Cottagers are yet to lose.

This record should be extended to 12 against last season's Bulgarian runners-up. Fulham are 2/7 favourites to win their second match in Group E with the draw a 4/1 shot. For those thinking that CSKA can win their first match in the group stage you can get a mammoth 9/1.

I don't think the latter will happen though as CSKA have picked up just a solitary point so far, from their draw against Fulham in the reverse fixture on matchday one. In addition they have won just one of their last eight European away games.

I am not overly convinced though that Fulham will win as Roy Hodgson is without a number of his players. Therefore the 4/1 about a draw looks the one to back, for those wanting the extra security then a Fulham win or a draw can be backed at 1/14 in the double chance market.

Fulham have scored once in all four of their matches so far and with their rather defensive outlook and goal shy attack then consequently 1-1 at 13/2 or a 1-0 Fulham win at 9/2 look good options in the correct score market. For them to score exactly one goal again is a 23/10 shot in the total Fulham goals market. With there likely to be a lack of goals under 2.5 goals should be backed at evens.

Fulham could only draw 1-1 at home to Bolton at the weekend and despite dominating for much of the game could not turn their possession into goals. This could be the same again on Thursday as the Cottagers will be without Andy Johnson, Diomansy Kamara and Bobby Zamora - leaving Erik Nevland, Clint Dempsey and Eddie Johnson as their only forwards.

However, the best bet to get on the scoresheet for the home side looks to be Damien Duff. The Irish winger has been in impressive form in recent weeks and looks good value at 7/1 to open the scoring and 2/1 to score at anytime.

Fulham will fancy their chances of picking up the three points with their vocal home support and CSKA's poor away record, but the draw looks most likely at the prices, but whatever happens the Cottagers should extend their unbeaten European home record to 12 matches.



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