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Fulham 2-0 Barnsley Cham 26 1617 - GetWestLondon

last updated Monday 16th January 2017, 12:48 PM

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Tom Harle at GetWestLondon

Fulham (1) 2-0 (0) Barnsley

The first half ebbed and flowed.

It was the visitors that came closest to opening the scoring as an Adam Hammill drive that had David Button comprehensively beaten and flicked the crossbar on its way over.

Despite this season’s penalty woes, the Whites took the lead from the spot on the stroke of half-time. After Kevin McDonald had been tugged down in the box, Martin confidently slotted his penalty into the bottom-right.

It was 2-0 10 minutes after the interval. Martin, taking the ball from Sone Aluko, drifted over a cross which was perfectly weighted for the onrushing Malone to plant a low, left-footed drive into the far corner.

Then followed a cavalcade of chances; Aluko saw a shot palmed wide before Martin drew another fine save out of Adam Davies. Lucas Piazon then had a shot hacked off the line by Aidy White.

Tom Cairney forced Welsh international Davies into another eye-catching stop but despite the late introduction of Adam Armstrong, Fulham's fourth win in six games never looked under threat.

The last few weeks have been chastening as the Martin ruckus ran and ran - but the striker took the first step on his road to redemption with a great performance here.

Apart from a few isolated boos, the home crowd welcomed him back with open arms as he scored his eighth of the season from the spot; a tally many Whites fans must have thought he’d never reach.

The Scottish international set up Malone’s second with a cute lofted ball across goal and he could have had a hat-trick were it not for the heroics of visiting keeper Adam Davies.

There will be no better way to win back the hearts of Fulham fans and the minds of his team-mates than with a series of performances like this.

As half-time beckoned Barnsley began to take heart from their ability to bleed the tempo out of Fulham’s passing, stemming the tide after a series of early chances had been created.

The awarding of a penalty came at the perfect time for the home side to stymie any momentum the visitors thought of building.

The penalty itself looked harsher on each viewing as Kevin McDonald folded in to under a challenging from Angus MacDonald that could at most be described as clumsy.

The Cottage held its collective breath- their team had missed four of its five penalties before today, remember- but Martin never looked like missing with a confident strike from 12 yards.

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