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Fulham beaten at West Ham - Match Report Prem MD27

last updated Monday 25th February 2019, 11:29 AM

Match Report

West Ham United (2) 3-1 (1) Fulham

Premier League Match Day 27 1819 London Stadium

Friday 22nd February 2019,    KO: 19:45

Referee: Lee Mason (Lancashire)

Fulham striker Ryan Babel
Fulham striker
Ryan Babel
Ryan Babel
His Wiki page
Fulham have only themselves to blame for their season, confused decision-making and erratic management probably sending them straight back to the Championship.

But on this one occasion they can feel genuinely aggrieved that their fate was unfairly decided by someone else. They were ahead and playing well against West Ham, when Javier Hernández punched home a goal and changed the course of a game that ended in defeat for Claudio Ranieri’s side. .

Ranieri was furious at the time but later was more sanguine about Lee Mason’s failure to spot the offence.

“It’s too easy to say yes,” he said, when asked if the handball had affected the outcome.

“After the equaliser West Ham increased their confidence, and we were a little scared.

It was a big pity the referee was covered [unsighted].” Replays seemed to show Mason had a good view of the incident but the referee was far from the only one to miss it: only a couple of Fulham players protested and it did take four or five replays to be 100% sure the touch came from hand rather than head.

Still, perhaps the forward’s guilty glance like a child with his hand in the sweet tin might have been proof enough.

“Only he knows the truth,” said Ranieri, smiling ruefully. It had all started so well.

Ryan Babel gave Fulham the lead in the third minute, sweeping home after a low Ryan Sessegnon cross fell perfectly in the six-yard box, and for about 20 minutes Fulham were purposeful, strong and in control.

It felt strange. It felt like it could not last, although legally speaking it should have.

Match Stats West Ham Fulham
Goals (2) 3 1 (1)
Scorers Chicharito 29 Babel 3
Diop 40
Antonio 90'+1
Goal attempts 21 8
On target 7 5
Shooting Accuracy 33% 62%
Possession 55% 45%
Passes 553 473
Passes Success 82% 82%
Crosses 34 8
Crosses Success 29% 25%
Corners 12 0
Tackles 23 18
Tackles Success 48% 61%
Saves 4 4
Fouls 11 11
Offsides 3 3
Yellows 1 1
Reds 0 0
source: SkySports
The controversial equaliser came from a Robert Snodgrass corner, improperly cleared and turned in at the far post.

Just before the break West Ham were ahead, again from a Snodgrass corner but this time it was fair, Issa Diop given all the time and space he needed to batter a close-ranger header past Sergio Rico. Fulham were slightly the better team after half-time but as Ranieri said that did not translate into many real chances.

The home crowd was roused first by the return of Manuel Lanzini, on as a substitute after missing the season to date with a cruciate ligament injury, and then West Ham’s third goalin the final moments, Michail Antonio bouncing a header in from a Marko Arnautovic cross.

It was West Ham’s first win in six weeks, gratefully received even if the performance was not dazzling.

“After those 10 strange minutes [at the start] we dominated the game,” Manuel Pellegrini said. “It was a good performance.”

For Ranieri and Fulham, who are eight points from safety, time is running out.

“It’ll be a miracle [to survive] but we must fight together,” he said.

“I believe in my players. They lack experience but they have a very big heart.

We have to believe that something will change.”

West Ham United: Fabianski, Zabaleta (Fredericks 45), Diop, Ogbonna, Cresswell, Rice, Antonio, Noble, Snodgrass, Anderson (Lanzini 76), Chicharito (Arnautovic 64)

Unused substitutes: Adrian, Obiang, Nasri, Carroll

Chicharito 29 (with an attempt from very close range to the bottom left corner (using his hand). Assisted by Angelo Ogbonna following a corner.)
Diop 40 (header from very close range to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Robert Snodgrass with a cross following a corner.)
Antonio 90+1 (header from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Marko Arnautovic.)

Booked: Lanzini (83,f),

Fulham: Rico, Odoi, Nordtveit, Ream, Bryan, Cairney, Chambers, Seri (Anguissa 45), R Sessegnon (Markovic 45), Babel, Mitrovic

Unused substitutes: Fabri, Le Marchand, Christie, Ayite, Vietto

Ryan Babel 03 (footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Ryan Sessegnon )

Booked: Bryan (45,f),

Referee: Lee Mason (Lancashire)

Attendance: 59,950

Source Nick Miller at The Guardian
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