Goal Glut At Griffin Park
Brentford v Fulham
Brentford are flying high in the Championship, but Fulham are showing signs of turning their season around. This Friday’s game promises to be absorbing viewing.
Brentford have won their last three Championships fixtures coming into this one, including a victory over the league leaders, and are unbeaten on their home patch since mid-September. It’s a run of results that has taken The Bees into the play-offs and could, temporarily, move them into a share of second place alongside Bournemouth and Middlesbrough with another three points this Friday.
Striker Andre Gray, signed from Luton in the summer, has scored four in his last three appearances to move on to seven league goals for the season and is now the club’s top scorer.
Mark Warburton’s men have, however, conceded more goals than any other team in the top six, while Blackburn are the only side in the top half of the table to have conceded more Championship goals this season.
Fulham also come into the game in good form and are unbeaten in their last three, have lost only once in their last seven and have not lost any of their previous four away games. The Cottagers are still only three points above the drop zone but are beginning to look anything but relegation fodder.
Hugo Rodallega took his tally for the season to six goals with the opener against Huddersfield last time out; Ross McCormack was also on the scoresheet in that game and now has five for the season. At the other end of the pitch Kit Symons’ side have kept just one clean sheet in their last six games, conceding 14 goals in that period.
Veteran defender Alan McCormack continues to recover from an ankle injury that is set to keep him out for the remainder of the year. Josh Clarke has returned to the club following a loan spell at Stevenage, but isn’t expected to feature.
Fulham continue to be without Australian striker Adam Taggart as another injury set back looks set to further delay the 21-year-old’s debut.
This will be the first league meeting between the two teams since 1998 when they crossed paths in the old Division Two; a Fulham side including Peter Beardsley and Chris Coleman won 2-0 at Griffin Park that season thanks to a couple of goals from Paul Moody. The Cottagers also won 1-0 at Griffin Park earlier this season in the Capital One Cup, Ross McCormack notching the only goal of the game.
Brentford are made strong favourites in the betting at an 11/8 price, which seems fair given the contrast in league positions. However, Fulham are an improving side with a number of top quality players that were plying their trade in the Premier League not that long ago and look to be a value bet at the 9/5 available. They certainly look to have more match winners amid their ranks.
Goals can also be expected with two leaky defences on show
, Over 2.5 is appropriately priced at odds of 8/11 and Over 3.5 is another good value bet at odds of 7/4.