Writer: Andrew Joyce
Date:Saturday April 7 2007
So! What was good about Friday? 'Not a lot` as the ageing magician Paul Daniels might have said.
Journeying south after a 4-1 thrashing at the hands of the blue half of Liverpool was certainly a sobering experience. It`s fair to say that if Chris Coleman cannot turns things around quickly we could well be saying goodbye to Premiership football.
At the moment we`re four points away from the danger zone, some might suggest that`s a healthy enough gap whilst others might simply point out that we`re in free fall, no win in six, or is it seven? It`s too depressing to think about. Could Fulham really be the team that snatches relegation from the jaws of survival? I guess it`ll not be answered until the middle of this month at the earliest. Suddenly, the visit of Manchester City looks to be a must win game.
Up at Goodison Park, things started well, despite Ian Pearce, the goal hero form last weekend, not being able to fulfil his promise of making the starting eleven. His absence paved the way back into the starting eleven for Zat Knight. With Radzinski in the ranks I even hoped that the much proved theory of ex-players scoring against their old clubs could work in our favour.
Strangely enough, it wasn`t to be the case but when Simon Davies planted a corner straight onto the head of the unmarked Bocanegra to put us 1-0 up, I seriously thought we had turned the proverbial corner. However, twenty minutes or so later, the realisation that I`d been led up the garden path hit home with Everton scoring three goals in quick succession.
The first came only three minutes after we`d opened the scoring. Mikel Arteta released Lescott down the flank and his cross was easily converted by the on-rushing Carsley who scored his first goal of the season.
The second came in the 34th minute and once again the scorer would be netting his first for his club this season. This time Arteta delivered a perfect free kick for Alan Stubbs to rise majestically to head home. At 2-1, you sort of hoped there was a chance to comeback, especially if Coleman could somehow rally the players at half time.
Unfortunately, half time didn`t come quick enough with eighteen year old Vaughan scoring right on the stroke of half time. Sadly it wasn`t as if we`d not been warned, three times earlier in the half Vaughan had troubled Fulham. On one occasion his shot just cleared the bar and on another he hit the post. Therefore when the excellent Arteta carved out a further chance the youngster gleefully smashed a volley into the net.
At 3-1 you knew it was all over, it was no just a matte of how many. Thankfully, Fulham showed a little more resilience in the second half, either that or Everton took their foot of the gas and the visitors defence managed to last until the 80th minute before being opened up again. This time it was another youngster, Anichebe, who caused the problem. The Nigerian released Arteta and when the Spaniard delivered a chance on the plate it was gleefully tucked away.
All that was left was the journey home, mile after mile of motorway only broken up with the odd service station or two. Isn`t life as a Fulham supporter grand at the moment?
Date:Saturday April 7 2007
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