FOOTBALL NEWS

01/02/2013 09:19, Report by Mark Froggatt
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Preview: Fulham away

players from Craven Cottage during his 26 year reign as Reds manager – Louis Saha, Edwin van der Sar and Chris Smalling.

Opposition boss: Fulham manager Martin Jol admitted his team were lucky not to suffer a humiliating loss after seeing United canter to a 4-1 cup win last weekend: “It was still 1-0 at half-time so we were still in it, but we came out and they scored two early goals and the game was finished. Luckily enough, they only scored a fourth goal because it could have been one of those days when they scored six or seven. But it's a one-off game. For us the most important thing is the league.”

Star man: On Thursday, the Cottagers signed AC Milan’s Urby Emanuelson on loan until the end of the 2012/13 season and the Dutch international could make his debut against the Reds on Saturday. The 26-year-old, a product of Ajax’s fabled academy, can play on the left of defence or midfield and previously worked under Jol at the Amsterdam Arena during the 2009/10 campaign.

Quote/unquote: "Fulham's home record is very good and has been for a few years. They're one of the few clubs that get full houses every year. I don't think the pitch is as tight as people make out - the size is good but it's the tightness around it that make it feel small. There's always a good atmosphere and that's important." - Sir Alex.

Whistle-blower: Kevin Friend, a member of the Select Group of referees since the 2009/10 season, will be the man in the middle. The Leicester-based official has taken charge of 23 matches this campaign, dishing out 80 yellow cards and two reds.

Rivals watch: On Saturday, Arsenal face Stoke at midday before Newcastle host Chelsea. Manchester City welcome Liverpool to the Etihad Stadium on Sunday.

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