Fulham v Cardiff City: Martin Jol hopes for change of luck - and three points this weekend

The Cottagers have not won in the league since the opening day of the season

Martin Jol is aware success and failure in the Barclays Premier League is determined by fine margins and hopes, for once this season, luck is on the side of Fulham against Cardiff on Saturday.

The Cottagers beat Everton in the Capital One Cup on Tuesday to end a six-match winless sequence at home, but are still chasing a second league win of the season following the opening-day defeat of Sunderland.

"The difference between being successful and not is nothing," said Jol, who was booed following Fulham's most recent home league game, the draw with West Brom.

"If we had won the game against West Brom, we would've been in the top half of the table."

Instead, Fulham enter this weekend's fixtures lying in the relegation zone.

Yet Jol is boosted by the prospect of fielding on-loan Aston Villa striker Darren Bent up front alongside Dimitar Berbatov, having had limited opportunity to do so in the early weeks of the season.

Fulham are without first-choice goalkeeper Maarten Stekelenburg (shoulder), winger Ashkan Dejagah (calf) and defender Matthew Briggs (hernia), but defender Aaron Hughes (thigh) and midfielder Bryan Ruiz (ankle) could return if they pass fitness tests.

Jol has confidence the temporary move for Bent will pay dividends this term, with the England striker's start yielding two goals, despite being curtailed by injury.

The recruitment of Bent was better business, according to Jol, than Cardiff's big-money deal for Andreas Cornelius, who was signed on a reported £8million deal from FC Copenhagen.

"We knew him (Cornelius)," Jol said. "He was on our shadow list, but I thought it was not only too much, but we couldn't afford to buy him.

"We've got Bent. That is probably not long-term, because he will go back to Aston Villa, probably.

"During the time he (Bent) is here, hopefully he will score goals and hopefully more than Cornelius."

Jol hopes Cardiff's open approach will aid his side, but he is also wary of the newly-promoted Welshmen.

"If you look at Cardiff, they're very organised," Jol said.

"They've got pace up front and they've always got some activity. They'd like to hurt you.

"It's not a walkover, of course not. It's a strong team with good qualities. They've invested a few bob as well.

"It won't be easy, but how many games are easy in the league?

"It's never easy. They will come at you, they will try to have a go.

"You get more space and normally it's easier. If you get more space with the players we've got - and we've got some space up front now - hopefully we can make it easier for ourselves.

"If not, I can live with a narrow win as well.

"Hopefully we are strong enough."

Like Jol, Sweden winger Alex Kacaniklic knows the quality of Cardiff, who beat Manchester City earlier in the season.

"Cardiff are a good side and they have shown that already with good results," Kacaniklic said.

"We go into every game with the same mentality, to win the game and play our football.

"I saw the game against Manchester City and that shows that they are a very good side. They are good on the counter and work hard."

Kacaniklic hopes for successive wins.

"If you keep winning, everybody gets used to winning," he added.

"We won (on Tuesday), three points on Saturday and then we have another home game, so that could be another three points."

PA

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
tvStrictly presenter returns to screens after Halloween accident
News
peopleFormer civil rights activist who was jailed for smoking crack cocaine has died aged 78
News
i100
News
Boxing promoter Kellie Maloney, formerly known as Frank Maloney, entered the 2014 Celebrity Big Brother house
people
Sport
Dwight Gayle (left) celebrates making it 1-1 with Crystal Palace captain Mile Jedinak
premier leagueReds falter to humbling defeat
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Mau Mau uprising: Kenyans still waiting for justice join class action over Britain's role in the emergency

Kenyans still waiting for justice over Mau Mau uprising

Thousands join class action over Britain's role in the emergency
Isis in Iraq: The trauma of the last six months has overwhelmed the remaining Christians in the country

The last Christians in Iraq

After 2,000 years, a community will try anything – including pretending to convert to Islam – to avoid losing everything, says Patrick Cockburn
Black Friday: Helpful discounts for Christmas shoppers, or cynical marketing by desperate retailers?

Helpful discounts for Christmas shoppers, or cynical marketing by desperate retailers?

Britain braced for Black Friday
Bill Cosby's persona goes from America's dad to date-rape drugs

From America's dad to date-rape drugs

Stories of Bill Cosby's alleged sexual assaults may have circulated widely in Hollywood, but they came as a shock to fans, says Rupert Cornwell
Clare Balding: 'Women's sport is kicking off at last'

Clare Balding: 'Women's sport is kicking off at last'

As fans flock to see England women's Wembley debut against Germany, the TV presenter on an exciting 'sea change'
Oh come, all ye multi-faithful: The Christmas jumper is in fashion, but should you wear your religion on your sleeve?

Oh come, all ye multi-faithful

The Christmas jumper is in fashion, but should you wear your religion on your sleeve?
Dr Charles Heatley: The GP off to do battle in the war against Ebola

The GP off to do battle in the war against Ebola

Dr Charles Heatley on joining the NHS volunteers' team bound for Sierra Leone
Flogging vlogging: First video bloggers conquered YouTube. Now they want us to buy their books

Flogging vlogging

First video bloggers conquered YouTube. Now they want us to buy their books
Saturday Night Live vs The Daily Show: US channels wage comedy star wars

Saturday Night Live vs The Daily Show

US channels wage comedy star wars
When is a wine made in Piedmont not a Piemonte wine? When EU rules make Italian vineyards invisible

When is a wine made in Piedmont not a Piemonte wine?

When EU rules make Italian vineyards invisible
Look what's mushrooming now! Meat-free recipes and food scandals help one growing sector

Look what's mushrooming now!

Meat-free recipes and food scandals help one growing sector
Neil Findlay is more a pink shrimp than a red firebrand

More a pink shrimp than a red firebrand

The vilification of the potential Scottish Labour leader Neil Findlay shows how one-note politics is today, says DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Tenderstem broccoli omelette; Fried eggs with Mexican-style tomato and chilli sauce; Pan-fried cavolo nero with soft-boiled egg

Oeuf quake

Bill Granger's cracking egg recipes
Terry Venables: Wayne Rooney is roaring again and the world knows that England are back

Terry Venables column

Wayne Rooney is roaring again and the world knows that England are back
Michael Calvin: Abject leadership is allowing football’s age-old sores to fester

Abject leadership is allowing football’s age-old sores to fester

Those at the top are allowing the same issues to go unchallenged, says Michael Calvin