Prediction and odds for the game: Fulham (19/20) v Cardiff City (29/10)
We are backing the home win
When: Thursday, 30th July 2020, Kick-off 19:45
Where: Craven Cottage
On Thursday night, Fulham host Cardiff City at Craven Cottage in the Championship play-offs semi-final second leg. The initiative is very much with the home team, who recorded a 2-0 home win in the first leg at the Cardiff City Stadium.
The Cottagers will be highly confident of booking their place in the final of the play-offs after the first leg victory. However, Scott Parker’s will know that the job is not yet done. The Cottagers head into the game in good form, though, as the team from the English capital are undefeated in eight Championship games, having recorded six wins.
The home side missed out on automatic promotion by just two points, but look good to secure a spot in the Premier League for next season via the play-offs. One facet of the home sides game that has been particularly impressive of late has been their defence. They have managed clean sheets in five of their last seven outings in the Championship.
Fulham’s home performances have certainly played a part in their recent good results, as the Cottagers have won five of their previous six league games at Craven Cottage. That aforementioned defensive record has been a key to the good home results, as they have kept clean sheets in four of their last six home games in the Championship.
A strong finish in the final few games of the Championship campaign ensured that the Bluebirds made the play-offs. However, the 2-0 defeat in the first-leg ended a three-game winning run in the Championship and halted the Welsh side’s positive momentum. The defeat also ended a good run of form in front of goal for Neil Harris’ team, as they had scored at least two goals in each of their three wins before the first-leg. The visitors will need to rediscover their shooting boots for this clash or they will have no chance of winning promotion.
One thing that will make Cardiff believe is their recent strong away record in the English second tier. The Bluebirds have recorded wins in four of their last five league matches on the road. They have also scored at least twice in three of those four wins, which is what they have to do on Thursday night.
It is hard to look beyond a home win in this clash. Parker’s team have looked strong of late at both ends of the field. Therefore we are backing the home win. This could be a good game for goals too, as Cardiff have to go for goals after the first-leg result, which could leave space for the home side to capitalise on.
Verdict: We are backing the home win at odds of 19/20 and/or over 2.5 goals scored at odds of 6/5. (All odds are taken from Bet365)
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Will Fulham finish the job and book their place in the Championship play-off final?