Writer: Andrew Joyce
Date:Sunday December 9 2007
In weather fit for ducks Fulham extended their run of failing to win on their Premier League travels to twenty-five games.
The statistics may show that we had an equal share of the possession but once again we fell foul to a man that has previously haunted us before, Yakubu.
The striker notched up a hat trick of goals to remind those of us who keep in touch with such quirks of fate that he also scored a hat trick against us whilst with Portsmouth.
For the fixture, Sanchez chose to play with a front two of Kamara and Kuqi whilst Omozusi retained his right-back slot.
With Davies returning to his former club, it was hoped that he could do that familiar thing and score against his former employer.
Indeed, Fulham had the first half chance and it came from a Davies corner. Kamara rose neatly but his flicked header drifted just wide with the Everton defence struggling.
Everton retaliated almost immediately and Niemi had to pull off a good save after Lescott unleashed a volley from an Arteta corner.
Minutes later Niemi was forced into action again pulling off a save after an Arteta thirty yard free kick had looped up in the air off of Davies.
Stefanovic had a rare scoring opportunity but could only miss-hit his shot and the chance was gone.
Minutes later the home side were to suffer a blow when Leighton Baines, in full flight, pulled up suddenly with what appeared to be a hamstring strain. Phil Jaglielka came on with Neville switching to left back.
As half time approached, Lescott could have done better with a headed clearance but Fulham couldn`t capitalise on the half chance.
With the whistle blown for the break Fulham could be pleased that the game was still there for the taking.
Unfortunately, as has often been the case this season, things sort of fell apart a bit in the second half with Yakubu coming to the fore.
Only six minutes had been played when Niemi was forced to turn aside a Cahill volley by using his legs, sadly the rebound fell invitingly to Yakubu who gleefully netted.
At 1-0 it looked a long road back.
However, Fulham didn`t retreat into their shells and when a poor Neville clearance fell to the feet Murphy his shot had to be turned around the post by Howard.
The home side continued to push forward and Niemi rather meekly punched clear an Arteta corner, thankfully Stefanovic was on hand to block Yakubu`s shot.
Fulham, searching for the equaliser, pushed forward and good work from Kamara and Dempsey saw Howard parry a shot but Kuqi couldn`t force the rebound home.
It was to be a defining moment because minutes later Everton opened up a two goal advantage through Yakubu netting with a good header from a corner.
At 2-0 it was virtually game over.
Everton were now pouring forward and it looked to be a case of how many Fulham would ship.
Arteta was fed through by Yakubu but the offside flag came to our rescue before minutes later Yakubu got his hat trick.
The goal came after some good work from Pienaar resulted in Yakubu driving his shot into the bottom corner of the net.
At 3-0 it was looking like a bl**dy long drive back to London!
Sadly, it could have been worse. Niemi was forced to make a great save from McFadden before the referee, Steve Bennett, put us all out of our misery.
Never mind, there is always next week!
Date:Sunday December 9 2007
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