Sunderland 0-0 Fulham FAC 4r 1415 BBC Sport

last updated Monday 26th January 2015, 1:09 PM


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Saj Chowdhury at BBC Sport


Sunderland (0) 0-0 (0) Fulham




to earn Fulham an FA Cup fourth round replay against 10-man Sunderland.

The 22-year-old steered away a sidefoot volley before using his foot to deny the ex-Spurs man from close range.

But the Black Cats rarely threatened and were reduced to 10 men when Jack Rodwell was shown a second yellow card for impeding Bettinelli.

Fulham almost won it late on when Hugo Rodallega's shot cannoned off a post.

Had the substitute scored the winner from that effort it would have been deserved for Kit Symons' Championship side, who showed great discipline and created good chances of their own.

After a terrible start to the season, the Cottagers are showing more steel under their former player, and that is two league wins and now a draw against top flight opposition in the last three games.

Sunderland have been as, if not more, inconsistent than Fulham this season and failed to impress here in front of a small crowd of 22,961.

Defoe, who only made his return to English football last week, was the one shining light for Gus Poyet's side as they huffed and puffed but failed to create many clear opportunities.

They sorely missed the injured Adam Johnson. His thrusting runs from midfield and his deliveries surely would have posed more problems for the Fulham defence than what the midfielders on show managed.

And the home side's day was summed up by the sending off of midfielder Rodwell, who showed inexplicable indiscipline when he stuck out an arm to prevent Bettinelli from throwing the ball out to a team-mate.

Moments before Sunderland had a their, albeit brief, good spell, when Defoe twice forced Bettinelli into action.

The first was a placed volley which the former Cottagers youth player clawed away, and the second was a save with his foot from point-blank range.

Fulham's best chance fell to Rodallega, who shook a post with a spectacular shot, while Seko Fofana and Moussa Dembele both had strikes pushed away by Vito Mannone.

Sunderland boss Gus Poyet said:
"It was a poor game overall. The second half was better, there was more emotion and more pressing. The sending off changed the game but it is football - if you see the results in the FA Cup today it shows it means so much for teams.

"We were better with 10 men than 11. The players know someone is missing so they give an extra bit, it is disappointing that they don't do that before but I think that is just human nature."

Fulham boss Kit Symons said:
"It was a bit disappointing in the end but we came to a Premier League side and acquitted ourselves very well.

"Our quality in the final third has been generally good but was lacking a little bit. They are a top-flight side with some excellent players though and you expect them to step up when they go down to 10 men."























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