London rivals face off in key game at both ends of Premier League table

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West London rivals Chelsea and Fulham clash in a big game at both ends of Premier League table this evening.

Chelsea beat West Ham to boost their top-four hopes but must follow that up with a win over near-neighbours Fulham.

Thomas Tuchel’s Chelsea take on Fulham this weekend

AFP

Thomas Tuchel’s Chelsea take on Fulham this weekend

The Blues would go six points clear of the Hammers with a win.

Fulham also need a win as they look to beat the drop.

The Cottagers go into this match seven points off Brighton in 17th and are in desperate need of points.

Chelsea beat Fulham 1-0 earlier this season and have not lost to their London rivals since March 2006.

Chelsea v Fulham: How to listen

This match will get under way at 5:30pm on Saturday, May 1.

Full coverage from Stamford Bridge will be exclusively live on talkSPORT, with our pre-match build-up starting at 5pm.

Faye Carruthers will be your host and commentary will come from Alex Crook and David Connolly.

To tune in, click the radio player below or HERE for the live stream.

Here are the other ways to listen…

App iPhone – Download from the Apple store

Android – Download from Google Play

Radio – talkSPORT is available across the United Kingdom via DAB digital radio and on 1089 or 1053 AM.

TV – Listen to talkSPORT through your TV on the following channels: Sky: Channel 0108 Virgin Media: Channel 927 Freeview: Channel 723 Freesat: Channel 731

Mason Mount gave Chelsea a 1-0 win over Fulham earlier this season

AFP

Mason Mount gave Chelsea a 1-0 win over Fulham earlier this season

Chelsea v Fulham: Confirmed team news

Chelsea midfielder Mateo Kovacic is not fit to return from a hamstring injury yet.

Antonio Rudiger has joined the Croatian on the sidelined with a minor knock.

The Blues have rotated their ranks ahead of Wednesday’s crucial Champions League clash with Real Madrid – but there’s still no room for Tammy Abraham in the starting XI.

Chelsea: Mendy, Christensen, Thiago Silva, Zouma, James, Gilmour, Mount, Chilwell, Ziyech, Werner, Havertz.

Subs: Arrizabalaga, Alonso, Jorginho, Kante, Abraham, Pulisic, Hudson-Odoi, Azpilicueta, Anjorin.

Fulham: Areola, Aina, Andersen, Adarabioyo, Robinson, Reid, Zambo, Lemina, Lookman, Maja, Ivan Cavaleiro.

Subs: Tete, Hector, Odoi, Mitrovic, Rodak, Ream, Bryan, Onomah, Carvalho.

Chelsea v Fulham: What’s been said?

Fulham boss Scott Parker: “It’s difficult because the games are running out. Like anything that’s the next challenge.

“I think the one thing I want to get across here is that I understand that there is a difficult challenge ahead of us and it is a hard task. I’m not deluded in any way.

“I never want to try and blind my players or give them some hope that maybe isn’t there. So everything I’m saying is coming from a place that I firmly believe and I want my players to understand that.

“I firmly believe that you can’t be that close (in matches), like it has been, and be a dead and buried team.

“You can’t be that close with the last kick of the game at the Emirates, you can’t be that close when we narrowly missed out on certain games this year.

“The difference between one Saturday to the next is a difference between us being dead and buried or us having a fighting chance or we’re going to survive now. When it is that close then there has to be belief.

“We lost to Wolves, and we were ‘dead’, I came out and faced the cameras and it was ‘ah, you’re gone, you’ve got no chance, absolutely no chance’.

“And then as quickly as that happened, if we had beaten Arsenal, the narrative would have been much different. When it can change that quick, then it’s different. And that’s why I believe.”

Scott Parker is running out of games to get Fulham out of relegation trouble

AFP

Scott Parker is running out of games to get Fulham out of relegation trouble

Chelsea v Fulham: Match stats and facts

  • Chelsea are unbeaten in their last 18 home games against Fulham in all competitions (W10 D8) since a 0-2 second tier defeat in October 1979.
  • Fulham have won just one of their 29 Premier League matches against Chelsea (D10 L18), winning 1-0 in March 2006 at Craven Cottage.
  • Of the 374 top-flight fixtures to have been played at least 50 times, Fulham have the lowest win rate against an opponent, managing just three wins in their 51 such meetings with Chelsea (6%).
  • Fulham are winless in their last 23 Premier League London derby matches (D5 L18) since beating West Ham 2-1 in January 2014. However, the Cottagers have avoided defeat in their last three such fixtures on the road, drawing at Tottenham, Crystal Palace and Arsenal this term.
  • In Premier League London derbies this season, Chelsea have won the most games (6), the most points (19), scored the most goals (15), and conceded the fewest (4). 75% of their four goals conceded were against Arsenal, with the Gunners the only side to beat them in a derby match this term.
  • Chelsea have lost just one of their 14 Premier League games under Thomas Tuchel (W8 D5), having lost five of their last eight under Frank Lampard this season (W2 D1). However, the Blues have won just 43% of their seven home league games under the German so far (W3 D3 L1).
  • Away from home, Fulham have dropped more points from winning positions than any other side in the Premier League this season (13). The Cottagers have opened the scoring in six of their last seven away league games (the other finishing 0-0), but have gone on to win just two of those six matches (D3 L1).
  • 64% of Fulham’s Premier League goals this season have come away from home (16/25). Only Manchester City in 2006-07 (65.5%) have scored a higher share of their goals on the road in a single Premier League campaign (19/29).
  • No player has scored more Premier League goals for Chelsea this season than Timo Werner (6). His winning goal against West Ham last time out was his first in eight league games, while he’s only scored in consecutive league games for the Blues once (in November).
  • Chelsea keeper Édouard Mendy has kept 15 clean sheets in his 27 Premier League games this season, with only Ederson keeping more (17). Of all keepers to have started at least 25 games in Premier League history, Mendy is the only one to keep a clean sheet in more than half of them (56%).





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