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Sunday, 8 April 2012

Blue Monday for Chelsea's men in Blue?

The Easter weekend comes to a close with a full set of football fixtures & we're trying to improve on a horrible Saturday where Southampton conceded in the 94th minute & Nottingham Forest dominated Bristol City only to lose 1-0. Stoke managed to get the win over Wolves for a bit of damage limitation & we're looking for a full set of wins today as we look through the leagues other than the ultra tough Championship including the Monday Night Football game between Fulham & Chelsea.

(Louis Dodds scored a brace against Aldershot & has 8 for the season)
Down in League Two Port Vale entertain Macclesfield Town at Vale Park, Port Vale are in 15th position whilst Macclesfield are in the second relegation spot & three points away from safety. Port Vale turned in an impressive performance on Good Friday to win away at Aldershot Town & get them back on track after two defeats, if you ignore their results against the top eight sides, where they haven't pick up a single win, they have 17 victories out of 27 matches & four draws against the rest of the league, at home they have picked up nine wins & won four of their last seven with one draw. Visitors Macclesfield haven't won a game since 2011, a winless streak which has seen 12 defeats & six draws in their last 18 league games, they have the worst away record in the league where they have suffered 15 defeats in 20 games & have failed to score in 60% of these matches. Macclesfield have lost their last three away games in a row & conceded eight goals in the process. Port Vale are no world beaters but they can come out victorious at odds of 19/20 against a very disappointing Macclesfield side.

(Clint Dempsey may be on the move in the Summer, until then Fulham can reap the benefits of his outstanding play)

In the evening's Premier League game Fulham host Chelsea in a game where the away side have several players with slight fitness doubts & also two massive games coming up in the next week with Spurs in the FA Cup semi final & Barcelona in the same stage of the Champions League, it's a set of circumstances that can play into the underdogs hands here. Chelsea were extremely fortunate to get the win at home against Wigan at the weekend & although their form has improved since sacking Villas Boas it probably isn't as strong as some would believe with their wins in the league coming against Stoke, Villa & Wigan - not exactly world beaters. If they are without John Terry (cracked ribs) again & Ashley Cole they will be very vulnerable at the back & that isn't ideal against a Fulham side full of attacking intent & a good home record. Clint Dempsey got another two goals at the weekend to move to 21 for the season, he was playing as a striker there but Martin Jol may have Pogrebnyak to call upon as he may be fit from an ankle injury, if he does Dempsey will drop back & that will compensate for the loss of Bryan Ruiz for the season. Fulham have won 5 of their last 8 & have already beaten Arsenal & Newcastle here, Chelsea began their complaining about their congested fixture list early & this could be a game they slip up in, at odds of 13/5 Fulham are the pick in what could be an exciting game.

(Brentford boss Uwe Rosler has his side firing on all cylinders)
In League One, Brentford travel to Victoria Park to play Hartlepool United, Brentford are in 8th position & three points outside of the playoff places whilst Hartlepool are in 12th. Brentford are full of confidence at the moment having won their last five league games in a row with the latest being a comfortable 3-0 victory over Bury. At home they have won their last three in a row & haven't conceded a goal after winning score lines of 3-0, 2-0 & 2-0. Hosts Hartlepool have had an up & down season & it seems to be petering out to mid-table finish, They have only picked up seven points from a possible 24 in their last eight league games & they have only scored three goals. At home Hartlepool have lost their last two in a row against Sheffield United & Oldham Athletic & they haven't won in front of the home faithful in their last four. Brentford can continue their fine recent form & get the win at the attractive price of 13/8 with William Hill.

Port Vale to beat Macclesfield Town at 19/20 (William Hill)
Fulham to beat Chelsea at 13/5 (BetVictor)
Brentford to beat Hartlepool United at 13/8 (William Hill)

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