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Fulham 3 Portsmouth 1

Two goals from substitute Erik Nevland, following on from an opening goal from Andrew Johnson, were enough to give Fulham all three points against a Portsmouth side who committed defensive suicide.

Fulham went into the match as the second lowest scorers in the Premier League with only Middlesbrough having scored fewer, therefore the three goals are most welcome.

As predicted, Roy Hodgson selected the same side that had started the last two away games (both of which we lost) for the challenge Pompey were to present, indeed, after those two away defeats, Fulham were looking to improve on an unbeaten Premier League run of seven home games.

At a crisp Craven Cottage, it was the visitors that started better with Davis, in midfield, looking to prompt them. Thankfully, Danny Murphy rose to the challenge and started to match the endeavour shown by his opponent, but for the first stages of the game it was a midfield battle with no real chances being created.

That was all to change in the 14th minute when a Pompey defensive howler presented Andrew Johnson with a great chance. The Pompey defence played the offside trap; well everyone but Distin, and Andrew Johnson couldn`t believe his luck as he scored, although James did get a hand to it, his eighth goal of the season.

It was hardly the sort of defending Tony Adams was famous for in his Arsenal hey-day!

Pompey went in search of an equaliser and Mullins looked like he was about to score until an impressive challenge form Brede Hangeland rescued Fulham. Distin, obviously not shamed enough by his offside gaff, then made another error but this time Andrew Johnson was foiled by James.

As the half approached its finish Schwarzer was forced to tip over the bar a Davis shot before Kaboul headed against the bar when it looked easier to score.

Half time and all was well.

The second half saw Pompey pressing for the equaliser and John Pantsil was lucky not to be penalised for a challenge, in the box, on Nugent that many, except the referee, thought was a penalty.

Like the first half much of the action was taking place in midfield before the visitors then, somehow, managed to create another offside gaff which gave Erik Nevland, on as a substitute for Bobby Zamora, the perfect opportunity to double the lead with seventy-one minutes gone.

Fulham were now in control and in the eightieth minute Nevland was to get his second of the game when he turned and shpt home at the near post. At 3-0 the game was all over although the enterprising Nugent did manage to pull a goal back in the eighty-fourth minute when he headed home a Pennant cross.

The three points were Fulham`s but I`d love to have been a fly on the Pompey dressing room wall to hear what Tony Adams had to say to his players!

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

The Journalist

Writer: Andrew Joyce  Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Saturday January 31 2009

Time: 5:41PM

Your Comments

Great game
Looking at the MoM poll, everyone is clicking on Nevland, but no one has clicked on Davies until I just did! Nevland is becoming a Pantsil style legend. Like we've all said before he should be getting more minutes on the pitch and I don't think Hodson is going to be able to leave him out for our next couple of games. However Davies was easily MoM in my opinion, he never stopped running and he either set up or was instrumental in the build up to all of our goals. Simply a superb performance from Davies. Nevland was so cool and clinical in the finish that he put Zamora to shame. Only bad point of the game was Zamora's performance, he was awful today and quite rightly sub-ed!
you're right about Davies but, as usual, it's the scorers that get the credit!
Al Billy
Although Zamora has worked hard for most of the season, he hasn't scored nearly enough and this game might see Nevland start the next game after his two goals.
Zamora was poor today!! For such a tall player...he doesn't win many headers!! i just hope nevland gets the start from now on....clinical finisher.
I think Zamora's main problem in more or less all aspects of his game is bottle. He lacks the confidence in not only his finishing, but his aerial play which is why, although he does tend to have a half decent first touch and can hold up well on certain occasions, you will always see him pawn off the ball to either the likes of AJ or Deuce in front of goal. Nevland is pure quality, have always said that and in my opinion he is the best finisher currently at the club. Great result today, am currently at university @ portsmouth and got a bit of stick off the locals for showing the colours this evening! COYW!
Come on now, who put the vote in for Gera MotM?
I thought Davies and Dempsey were fantastic. Zamora is lacking confidence, but he continues to defend from the front and works hard every minute he's out there.
Well done Fulham another good home result for you guys.. It seems the roles are reversed this year.. How much to we need to pay you so we can borrow Roy for a couple of months??.. We will lend you Adams in the meantime !
3 welltaken goals but i was still nervous watching
dan the man
Well done to you Fulham, enjoyed coming to the Cottage again, dont think we will be there next season though!! Good luck to you for the rest of the season, could we borrow Andy Johnson and Danny Murphy off you please!!

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