Fulham vs. Manchester City: Complete Preview, Team News and Projected Lineups

Thomas AtzenhofferCorrespondent IISeptember 28, 2012

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 15:  Dimitar Berbatov (c) of Fulham shoots and scores his sides second goal from the penalty spot during the Barclays Premier League match between Fulham and West Bromwich Albion at Craven Cottage on September 15, 2012 in London, England.  (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)
Clive Rose/Getty Images

Manchester City are in a rather frustrating rut at the moment. Their last three games between three competitions have told the tale of a club that has a lot more to be desired across the board.

Starting last week with what looked set for an amazing upset against the run of play in Madrid, the English champions shipped away two leads against the run of play to give Real Madrid an opening-day victory in the UEFA Champions League.

The Citizens followed up that performance with another of similar fashion when they hosted Arsenal at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday, September 23rd. Once again City went top first, but their defensive mistakes eventually cost them the full three points against the visiting Gunners who look set to challenge the defending champions for their crown this season.

Last but not least, there is no excuse for the poorness that was seen out of the side against Aston Villa in Tuesday's Capital One Cup match at home. City got off to a great start, taking the lead just 27 minutes into the match. However, an unfortunate defensive blunder saw a Gareth Barry own goal bring the Villains level.

Aleksandar Kolarov managed to secure a brief lead once again only to have Gabriel Agbonlahor cancel it out to force extra time. That would prove to be the death of City as continued defensive failings would see Charles N'Zogbia and Agbonlahor wrap up a 2-4 victory away from home to embarrass Roberto Mancini.

Fulham got to spend the week preparing for City after having been knocked out of the Capital One Cup by Sheffield Wednesday back in August. After two straight league wins over West Bromwich Albion and Wigan Athletic, Martin Jol's side continues to look much improved from last season.

The addition of Dimitar Berbatov has added a world-class attack that Fulham was usually not known for in the past, and his abilities to find the back of the net with his rather nonchalant style could be just the kind of approach that disrupts City's back line.

However, Jol could be looking to still add further reinforcements to his squad, according to ESPN, as the free-agent pool could yet be tapped by Fulham in the coming weeks.


Projected Lineups

Fulham: Mark Schwarzer; John Arne Riise, Brede Hangeland, Aaron Hughes, Sascha Reither; Chris Baird, Steve Sidwell, Damien Duff, Alexander Kacaniklic; Hugo Rodallega, Dimitar Berbatov 


Manchester City: Joe Hart; Gael Clichy, Joleon Lescott, Vincent Kompany, Pablo Zabaleta; Yaya Toure, Gareth Barry, Javi Garcia, David Silva, Sergio Aguero, Carlos Tevez.