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Fulham leave Hull stranded

last updated Tuesday 20th October 2009, 10:46 AM
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John Ley at Daily Telegraph

Fulham 2 Hull City 0

When AS Roma visit Craven Cottage on Thursday, the chances are the likes of Philippe Mexès and Júlio Baptista will offer a greater threat than that posed by Geovanni and Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink on Monday night.

Fulham celebrated their 130th anniversary with a victory against a wretched Hull City thanks to goals in either half at Craven Cottage, from Bobby Zamora and Diomansy Kamara, leaving the visitors stranded in the relegation zone.

The night was memorable for Bobby Zamora's second league goal of the season - doubling last season's return - and the appearance of former Fulham favourite Jimmy Bullard.

Roy Hodgson's team has already played 15 games, more than any other Premier League side, and now they must regroup quickly for the Europa League visit of Claudio Ranieri's Roma, knowing they could be without Danny Murphy, their captain, who will discover on Tuesday how serious a knee injury he sustained in the second half could be.

At least Zamora and Kamara will be fit to face the Romans and after combining well and impressing individually, Fulham have reason to be optimistic. Certainly Hodgson was satisfied with the pair, who helped their side produce a better start to the 2009-10 campaign than a year ago when they went on to finish seventh and qualify for Europe.

Ironically, Zamora could have joined Hull last summer after Hodgson agreed to let the striker talk to opposite number Phil Brown and he said: "It was nice to see Bobby score a goal," said Hodgson, "but I was pleased with his general all-round performance, particularly as he created so many chances as well.

"It is no secret that we allowed him to talk to Hull but I made it clear to him that I felt he could still do a job for us if he stayed. To be honest I am more concerned about results; if we win 1-0 in every game and he doesn't score I am not worried, but he will tell you he wants more goals."

The prospect of goals early on seemed unlikely though the prospect of espionage loomed large after fans smuggled in four inflatable footballs at Craven Cottage.

As the teams warned up a female steward was spotted holding a black and white inflatable ball, behind the goal at the Putney End, and then, as the teams kicked-off the same steward was seen carrying away no fewer than four identical balls, clearly destined for some form of subterfuge.

The game eventually came to life when Damien Duff forced Hull goalkeeper Boaz Myhill to stretch to his left to save as the home side began to take charge.

And just before the interval, Fulham threatened then struck. Firstly, Zamora's flick from Konchesky's corner almost produced the game's first goal. And seconds later, in the 43rd minute, Duff's volley was parried by Myhill before Zamora, who turned down a summer move to Hull, headed beyond the goalkeeper.

Bullard came on for only his second appearance for Hull and his appearance was greeted with cries of "one greedy b******". Almost immediately he was sent sprawling to the ground by a shoulder charge, from Kamara, to the delight of the home crowd.
Source John Ley at Daily Telegraph
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