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Fulham 1-2 Swansea Prem 12 1314 Mirror

last updated Monday 25th November 2013, 11:24 AM
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Mike Allen at The Mirror

Fulham (0) 1 Swansea (0) 2

Only a week after Renee Meulensteen was appointed as his new assistant, the Fulham boss is feeling the heat again

As Jonjo Shelvey's brilliant shot curled into the back of the Fulham net, the chants started.

The Fulham loyalists were demanding an end to Martin Jol's two-year reign as their team headed towards a fifth successive defeat and plunged into the bottom three of the Premier League.

There was nothing Jol could do about substitute Shelvey's quick feet that left two defenders for dead before he bent his shot past goalkeeper Maarten ­Stekelenburg from the edge of the area.

But it is Jol who will shoulder the blame. It won't be his new assistant Renee Meulensteen, sitting next to him on the bench and whose time may come sooner rather than later.

Jol said of the chanting: "I can understand it but I don't enjoy it. In the first half they were behind us, but when we went a goal down..."

Jol's problems are clear. If Fulham had 11 Scott Parkers they would not have any issues.

Instead they have too many players who take their lead from Dimitar Berbatov, and how Bryan Ruiz stayed on the pitch for 75 minutes is a mystery, although he has Jol's support.

The manager claimed: "He is probably my best offensive midfield player. He goes on international duty and does well, but then he comes back and struggles for confidence."

A starting place for Darren Bent and a change of ­formation hinted at the influence of former Manchester United assistant Meulensteen.

It took Fulham nearly half an hour to open up a ­meaningful opportunity when Pajtim Kasami's cross was headed on by Swansea defender Chico Flores into the path of Bent who crashed a shot against the post.

Berbatov headed a Ruiz corner inches wide, before Swansea were denied a few minutes before half-time when Derek Boateng was dispossessed and Nathan Dyer looked certain to score only to be denied by ­Stekelenburg's foot.

After the break it was a different matter, as ­Swansea's dominant possession started to pay dividends in pressure. Inevitably Fulham buckled, with Aaron Hughes making the critical contribution when he turned an Alejandro Pozuelo cross into his own net.

But Parker pulled the home side back into it with his first goal for the club, a cross to the far post that drifted over the head of Jose Canas on the line. It was no more than Parker deserved, but one man can only do so much.

However Swansea are a team of substance and style and they were rewarded with Shelvey's shimmy and finish that sealed the points and lifted them to midway in the table.

Swans boss Michael Laudrup said: "A win is always important, an away win even more so and today even more so for many reasons."

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