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Fulham beat Forest 3-2 ~ Ch. Match Report

last updated Thursday 22nd January 2015, 12:15 AM

Match Report

Fulham (3) 3-2 (1) Nottingham Forest

Championship MatchDay 27 at Craven Cottage

Wednesday 21st January 2015    KO: 19:45

Fulham striker Ross McCormack
Fulham striker
Ross McCormack
Ross McCormack
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Fulham striker Ross McCormack smashed a first-half hat-trick as Fulham sank Nottingham Forest 3-2 at Craven Cottage.

The Scottish striker took his goal tally for the season to 10 with three long-range strikes to crank the pressure back up on Forest boss Stuart Pearce.

The visitors threatened a comeback when Henri Lansbury scored either side of half-time, and would have dragged themselves level but for a glaring miss by top scorer Britt Assombalonga.

But Fulham held out for a victory which was a far cry from when the teams met at the City Ground in mid-September, with Forest top of the table and Fulham rock bottom.

A 5-3 defeat that day signalled the end of Felix Magath's ill-fated spell in charge and such has been Fulham's revival under Kit Symons - and Forest's decline from those heady days - that the sides are now level on points in mid-table.

Match Stats Fulham N. Forest
Goals (3) 3 2 (1)
Scorers McCormack 7 Lansbury 4
  McCormack 18 Lansbury 62
  McCormack 35  
Goal attempts 11 23
On target 6 7
Shooting Accuracy 55% 30%
Possession 52% 48%
Corners 6 8
Offsides 3 2
Passes 408 355
Pass Success 73% 71%
Crosses 12 35
Crosses Success 8% 20%
Tackles 19 23
Tackles Success 58% 87%
Saves 4 3
Fouls 12 10
Yellows 2 0
Reds 0 0
source: Soccernet/Fulham FC
Pearce hoped Forest had turned a corner after a dramatic 2-1 win at fierce rivals Derby on Saturday, their first win in nine attempts, but it was back to the drawing board after McCormack struck three times in 28 minutes.

McCormack looked in the mood to give Forest a torrid evening when, after just three minutes, his vicious, swerving effort from the edge of the box was tipped over at full stretch by Dorus de Vries.

But the Forest keeper was beaten four minutes later when McCormack collected Hugo Rodallega's lay-off and buried a low shot into the corner of the net from 20 yards.

McCormack had his second in the 18th minute from the same range, driving off a post after Rodallega's effort had been blocked.

Forest should have pulled one back when a dreadful back-header from Kostas Stafylidis let in Assombalonga, but Marcus Bettinelli was out quickly to block his shot.

Moments later De Vries pulled off a fine, point-blank save to deny Seko Fofana, but he was picking the ball out of the net again in the 35th minute as McCormack celebrated his treble.

The former Leeds striker's shot from the left corner of the area took a big deflection off Todd Kane to loop over the helpless De Vries and into the net.

Forest did get on the scoresheet in first-half stoppage time when Lansbury curled in a fine free-kick from the edge of the area, and in the 62nd minute the former Arsenal midfielder prodded in his second.

But Assombalonga somehow fluffed a golden chance to equalise when he missed an empty net with a header from three yards to prove it was not going to be Forest's night.

Fulham: Bettinelli,Grimmer,Hutchinson,Bodurov,Stafylidis, Parker (Ruiz 57),Tunnicliffe,Fofana,Kacaniklic, Rodallega (Woodrow 77),McCormack.
Subs Not Used: Kiraly,Roberts,Dembele,Williams,Burn.

Goals: McCormack 7,18,35.

Booked: Grimmer (84, f), Kacaniklic ()90, tw).

Nottm Forest: De Vries,Kane,Hobbs,Wilson,Lichaj (McLaughlin 32), Antonio,Gardner,Lansbury,Osborn,Tesche,Assombalonga.
Subs Not Used: Darlow,Veldwijk,Lascelles,Paterson,Vaughan, Christopher Burke.

Goals: Lansbury 45,62.

Referee: Andy Haines (Tyne & Wear).

Attendance: 15,512

Source ESPN FC/football league
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