Writer: Andrew Joyce
Date:Wednesday December 26 2012
And so that elusive win we were hoping for to get us out of our recent slump didn`t come today.
Instead we were left with a point apiece courtesy of a late equalizer, from the spot, cancelling out an opener from Berbatov. The draw makes our recent record read 5 points from a possible 30 available, a worrying statistic.
For the game, Martin Jol made four changes with Senderos, Sidwell, Kacaniklic and Rodallega all restored to the starting line-up. For the opposition, Steven Davis was also given a start.
The game started well for Fulham and they could have gone ahead early on when some good work from Rodallega presented Sidwell with an opportunity to send a volley, from 20 yards, just wide.
With 8 minutes gone, Fulham did take the lead when a cross from Reitehr was palmed away by Davies, in the Southampton goal, for Berbatov to put the loose ball into the net. Wheeling away, Berbatov revealed a message on his t-shirt that read Keep calm and pass me the ball, unfortunately the referee didn`t see the funny side and the Bulgarian was shown a yellow card.
Berbatov could have doubled the lead shortly after but somehow headed well wide from a cross from Kacaniklic. Southampton, although putting in a lot of effort, only troubled Fulham late on when Berbatov gave the ball away and Cork tested Schwarzer from some distance, thankfully the Australian keeper was equal to the shot.
Half Time - Fulham 1 Southampton 0
The visitors were almost level early in the second half when Puncheon shot narrowly wide from just outside the box. Fulham, meanwhile, had lost that edge they had in the first half and perhaps the laxness was demonstrated when Dejagah shot woefully wide from a good position.
Southampton, on the other hand, were coming back into the game and although there was a lot of huff and puff about their game it took a penalty to get them back on level terms when Baird was adjudged to have given away a foul. Lambert stepped forward and although it looked, at first, as if Schwarzer had got his hands to the ball it carried too much power to keep it out.
With Southampton equalising five minutes before the end of the game, Fulham had very little time to respond and Southampton could have snatched a winner themselves when a swerving 30 yard shot from Ramirez forced Schwarzer into a save.
As the crowd accepted the reality of another draw, Sidwell had everybody on their feet as his volley flew just wide.
Date:Wednesday December 26 2012
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