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Fulham 2-5 Birmingham Cham 16 1516 - BBCSports

last updated Monday 09th November 2015, 11:18 AM

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Fulham (0) 2-5 (3) Birmingham

Birmingham City ended a three-game goal drought with a comfortable win over Fulham which was sewn up by half-time.

Stephen Gleeson opened the scoring with a low 25-yard shot minutes before Paul Caddis's penalty three minutes later.

Jon Toral's shot made it 3-0 by the break, but Fulham's James Husband was then sent off for a second booking.

Alexander Kacaniklic gave Fulham hope but Clayton Donaldson and Viv Solomon-Otabor scored late goals for Blues either side of one for Ross McCormack.

The home side came into the game with two wins in their last three matches but were left standing by Birmingham's quicker start.

Both sides had chances to score before Jacques Maghoma set up Gleeson to net his third goal of the season from 25 yards.

Then, on 21 minutes, Caddis scored from the spot after the arm of keeper Joe Lewis brought down Donaldson.

Tim Ream went close for Fulham but that just spurred Birmingham to turn the screw and add a third.

Maghoma stretched to win a ball that looked to be going over the line and crossed for Toral to shoot high into the roof of the net.

Jamie O'Hara's free-kick against the bar was an encouraging sign for Fulham, but after Husband picked up two yellow cards in as many minutes just after the restart, Birmingham began coasting, only for Kacaniklic to capitalise on sloppy defending.

In a lively finish, Blues' top scorer Donaldson's fifth goal of the season looked to have made sure of victory.

McCormack pulled another back for Fulham courtesy of a lucky deflection, but there was still time for Blues' late substitute Solomon-Otabor to get on the scoresheet - his first goal in league football.

Fulham manager Kit Symons:
"It's very disappointing, I fancied us going into the game, being on decent form with two big wins, so I expected better today.

"We actually started the game okay, we had a few decent openings and then to concede two goals in such a short space of time is very poor defending from us.

"The third goal wasn't much better, and the sending off completely compounds it in the second half. At 10 men I thought we were quite brave and had a go.

"It was a fair red card, to be on a booking it was rash to go in like that, so I have no problems."

Birmingham manager Gary Rowett:
"I did ask them for a little bit more attacking quality today, and I felt we have been a bit wasteful in the final third, and not being ruthless enough.

"I didn't quite expect such a good performance today. We got into some brilliant positions, in the way we broke and kept our shape.

"Jon Toral was the best player on the pitch, in terms of his composure and his vision. We know what he's got - he's only 20 years old and starting games for the first time."

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