Fulham vs Cardiff: Predictions, betting tips, odds & match preview
The Bluebirds travel to Craven Cottage this Thursday, with the knowledge that they’ll need to overturn a two-goal deficit to ensure themselves passage to the Premier League.
However, with Scott Parker’s men in fiery form, our Fulham vs Cardiff predictions and betting tips are wagering that the clash will end in the hosts’ favour. So, without further ado…
Fulham vs Cardiff Preview
The Lilywhites dominated in the first-leg at the Cardiff City Stadium last week, scoring two unanswered goals to take full control of the tie.
Yet the first half was a far more even contest than the score-line suggested. Indeed, the likes of Lee Tomlin and Robert Glatzel looked promising on the counter, creating chances in the middle-third, while Fulham’s chances came from captain Tom Cairney who fired a shot that clipped the post instead of trickling in.
Chances created on both sides of the pitch certainly made for a compelling watch. And yet it seemed as if something was going to give, and unfortunately, it wasn’t in the favour of the hosts.
Indeed, the Cottagers’ clinical offensive moves proved to be too ruthless, resulting in two moments of pure brilliance. The first was from Josh Onamah, who produced a moment of magic eaarly in the second half, dancing his way past three Cardiff City defenders on his way through to goal. The second from Neeskens Kebano was just as picturesque to watch in the form of a beautifully-struck free-kick.
A two-goal cushion – and a deserved one – puts Parker’s men well on the path to securing Premier League football next season, despite the fact that their talisman Aleksandar Mitrovic had to come off with injury.
As for Cardiff, they’ll need to summon all their strength and passion to not only stem the Fulham goal-scoring charge, but also to get onto the score board themselves and chip away at that two-goal deficit.
The chances of that may be extremely unlike on both the pre-match predictions and the online betting charge. But if Cardiff’s home performances this season are anything to go by, expect a display fit for a team fighting for promotion come Thursday evening.
18 + only. Terms and conditions apply. Odds correct at time of writing.
Fulham vs Cardiff Predictions
With Mitrovic back in the action after his slight injury picked up in the first-leg of this tie, Fulham are back in the driving seat as the betting favourites.
It’s not as if they haven’t performed well without the Serbian in the side – indeed, this Thursday’s hosts have won each of their three games without the 25-year-old in the side.
But with Mitrovic included, the attack is far more refined. Not only is their a focal point to ping off, but the likes of Onamah and Cairney are able to orchestrate attacks and provide for the forward instead of being drawn out of position.
Evident in the first-leg, Fulham then often use the central midfield and wing-play to keep this attacking unit running, with Mitrovic spearheading the attack, and it wouldn’t be against the grain to wager on the Serbian in the anytime goalscorer markets through this ploy.
For Cardiff, this is a system and well-run formation that they’ve found tough to break, and not just in playoff permutations (the two faced off in the league a few weeks prior too).
Indeed, when the two sides meet in the Championship prior to the latter end of the season, it was a game that had a similar theme to last week’s first leg.
Yes, the Bluebirds were promising in the early stages of the game. But the inability to convert chances and appear as a ruthless attacking unit that punishes the mistakes of their opponents ultimately condemned them. In reality this soft, and sometimes lax, defence makes them ripe for a chastening defeat, as they experienced then.
Have Neil Harris’ men learnt anything from that loss? It doesn’t seem as if they have. Just as they chased shadows in the first leg, our forecast expects similar smoke and mirrors to ensue while Fulham assert their dominance.
Mitrovic is the man of the moment when it comes to scoring goals…
Squawka Stat: Aleksandar Mitrovic has 26 goals to his name this season in 40 Championship games as Fulham’s most potent attacking rebuttal.
Having been rested against Wigan on the weekend to ensure that he remains fully fit for this Thursday’s tie, the Serbian is bound to be amongst the goal-scoring action, whether that’s from the bench or not.
Throughout the season, Mitrovic has already snapped up 26 goals, from corners, outside the box, smart tap-ins or penalty conversions. His oustanding rate of clinical finishing makes him one of the league’s finest strikers, and at the age of 25, he has a long way to go.
For Brentford this week, it spells trouble. They would’ve hoped that the forward would be out of the action for the second-leg. But his inclusion means all the more for the likes of Onamah and Cairney – his inclusion heightens their potency, and as such makes the forecast of a high-scoring game even more convincing.
Expect the Serbian international to be posing as an attractive anytime scorer wager, and a thorn amidst the Cardiff defence, which has been one of the division’s most tumultous this season.
The stage is set for the attacking forward to inflict further woe on the Bluebirds.