Date:Saturday November 4 2006
In our latest poll we asked:
What will the outcome of the game V Everton be:
The results were:
Fulham win: 51%
Everton win: 18%
Score draw: 18%
No Score Draw: 13%
It appears that the Fulham faithful got it right again!
Claus Jensen's deflected second-half strike gave Fulham the points at Craven Cottage as Everton failed to net the ball for the first time this season.
The Toffees still have not beaten Fulham in London since 1966 but it was Jensen who was the keenest on the day to make up for lost time.
The Dane missed almost all of last season through injury and was only in the side because other midfielders were absent with injuiry, but put in a performance that helped turn the game around.
Before that, Everton's Andrew Johnson had been the game's most important individual. After coming close on a number of occasions. He came close to opening the scoring in the 13th minute by latching on to a long throw from the right by Phil Neville that had been helped on its way by the head of Tim Cahill. The England striker then showed his predatory instincts by losing no time in firing in a shot from eight yards but Fulham goalkeeper Antti Niemi reacted quickly enough to tip it round his left-hand post. Another side to Johnson's game is his habit of going down in the box and it was not long before referee Mike Atkinson had a decision to make on that score. Johnson had certainly been first to the ball as Ian Pearce came in to challenge but the official was quick to make it clear play was to continue.
The pressure Fulham had been able to exert at the other end was largely from set-pieces delivered by Jensen, although Everton had actually out-scored them on the corner tally at the other end.
But actual chances for Fulham were rare and it was not until the 45th minute that one fell to lone forward Brian McBride, the other former Toffee that had started for Fulham. The American swivelled to send off a shot from six yards out but fellow countryman Tim Howard was able to smother it to make his first significant contribution of the afternoon.
Neither side made changes following a first half that had seen Fulham skipper Luis Boa Morte, just back from a broken cheekbone, and Everton defender Alan Stubbs need lengthy treatment as well as Radzinski.
Fulham started sluggishly again, allowing Cahill and Mikel Arteta the time and space to set up Simon Davies for a shot that was deflected across goal and just wide.
Johnson needed treatment after coming off worse in a centre circle tussle with American Carlos Bocanegra but was also able to continue. No free-kick had been given but Radzinski was awarded a dubious looking one in the 56th minute that saw Fulham almost take the lead. After the Canadian had gone to ground as Arteta challenged, Jensen's delivery found the head of the veteran Pearce in a crowded six-yard box and it took a good save from Howard to divert it round his near post, and out for a corner.
That had been the best chance of the game, from either side and Howard was fortunate that when he punched a Boa Morte cross only as far as Wayne Routledge the winger's first touch was poor.
Chris Coleman's side looked to have discovered some confidence at last and there was applause for McBride after he had headed a Radzinski cross just wide at the back post.
That soon turned into a roar when Jensen fired the home side in front in the 66th minute, with his shot from the edge of the box looping over Howard thanks to a deflection off Lee Carsley as he moved in to close Jensen down.
Everton boss David Moyes sent on an extra striker in the shape of James Beattie for the final 18 minutes, with Davies the man making way.
Niemi pulled off a double save to deny Johnson after he had been put through by Arteta and had stayed on his feet as Pearce tried in vain to stop him. The Finn international keeper came out to parry his first effort and recovered in time to stop Johnson putting the loose ball in the net.
Fulham survived more than five frantic minutes of stoppage time to cling on to all three points.
Shots on target 3
Shots off target 2
Shots off bar/post 0
Shots on target 3
Shots off target 2
Shots off bar/post 0
Fulham: Niemi, Knight, Pearce, Rosenior, Bocanegra, Queudrue, Routledge, Jensen, C, Boa Morte, Radzinski, McBride
Subs: Lastuvka, Volz, Zakuani, Helguson, John
Everton: Howard, Lescott, Stibbs, Neville, Yobo, Cahill, Arteta, Osman, Davies, Carsley, Johnson.
Subs: Turner, Nuno Valente, Anichebe, Beattie, McFadden.
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