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Fulham 1-3 Sunderland 04 rply fac 1415 BBC Sport

last updated Wednesday 04th February 2015, 6:04 PM


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Michael Emons at BBC Sport


Fulham (1) 1-3 (0) Sunderland


Sunderland came from behind to beat Championship Fulham and avoid an FA Cup fourth-round replay upset.

The hosts took a surprise lead against the run of play when Hugo Rodallega fired a shot in off the crossbar.

But home goalkeeper Marcus Bettinelli gifted the visitors an equaliser when he fumbled Patrick van Aanholt's speculative cross over the goalline.

Ricardo Alvarez blasted the Black Cats ahead, before Jordi Gomez converted a late penalty as Sunderland advanced.

Gus Poyet's Premier League side now have a fifth-round tie at Bradford City, the lowest ranked side left in the competition, after the League One club shocked Premier League leaders Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.

Fulham had won eight of their previous 13 games in all competitions at Craven Cottage

Despite falling behind, it was a fully-deserved win for Sunderland as they had 60% possession, 17 shots at goal and 13 corners.

Nevertheless, Fulham, 15th in the Championship, went ahead with their first shot on target as Rodallega netted from close range after Cauley Woodrow's first attempt had been blocked following Ross McCormack's low corner.

But Sunderland benefitted from a huge slice of luck to get back on level terms as the hosts threw away their advantage.

Fulham's Bettinelli scores own goal

There looked to be no danger as Van Aanholt's deflected cross from the left wing looped into the penalty area with Bettinelli under no pressure, standing underneath the crossbar.

But the goalkeeper, who had played well in the goalless first game and had saved shots from Alvarez, Gomez and Steven Fletcher at Craven Cottage, failed to gather the ball cleanly and fumbled it over the line.

That was the spark the visitors needed and Argentina international Alvarez put Sunderland ahead 14 minutes later with a well-hit effort - his first goal for the club since joining on loan from Inter Milan.

With Fulham pushing for an equaliser, they were caught on the counter-attack and Nikolay Bodurov fouled substitute Danny Graham, before Gomez sent Bettinelli the wrong way from the penalty spot in injury-time.

Fulham manager Kit Symons said:
"Goals are generally defining moments in games. It was obviously a mistake, but Marcus has been excellent for us.

"I'm certainly not going to point any blame at him. He'll be all right, he's a very strong character and has been superb for us this season.

"One mistake won't affect him too badly. He's disappointed and a bit upset, but these things happen. He will dust himself down and get on with it."

Sunderland manager Gus Poyet said:
"I was just thinking how unfair football is because we were the better team by far, we were creating and controlling the ball. We didn't allow Fulham to play the game they like to play but we conceded a very strange goal.

"The equaliser was probably the turning point of the game, but overall we deserved to win. It was a game where we needed to get back to playing a certain way of football. "Overall, I'm pleased. I really enjoyed it. I didn't say this once this year, but I really enjoyed watching the team."























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