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Fulham edged out at Preston - Match Report Cham MD21

last updated Tuesday 10th December 2019, 11:38 PM

Match Report

Preston North End (1) 2-1 (0) Fulham

Championship Match Day 21 1920 at Deepdale

Tuesday 10th December 2019    KO: 19:45

Referee: Keith Stroud (Hampshire)

Aleksandar Mitrovic
Fulham Striker
Aleksandar Mitrovic
Aleksandar Mitrovic
His Wiki page

Dan Long at Sky Sports Preston moved back into the Sky Bet Championship play-off places with a 2-1 win over Fulham at Deepdale in a game that saw both sides end with 10 men.

Sean Maguire struck the opener with North End's first goal in five games (23), and that sparked the game into life; Denis Odoi was sent off for recklessly jumping into Patrick Bauer (28), and Joe Rafferty's lunge on Joe Bryan was met by the same punishment (45).

The hosts doubled their lead shortly after the break when David Nugent tapped home his first goal since returning to the club in the summer (52), before Aleksandar Mitrovic struck a late consolation (81).

Victory for Alex Neil's men ends a run of four straight defeats, leaving them sixth in the table; Fulham's second loss in a row sees them now trail second-place West Brom by 10 points.

It had been a drizzly, miserable day in Lancashire prior to kick-off and fans in the sparsely-populated stands at Deepdale were treated to a flat opening 20 minutes, devoid of chances for either side.

Match Stats Preston Fulham
Goals (1) 2 1 (0)
Scorers Maguire 23 Mitrovic 81
Nugent 52
Goal attempts 19 16
On target 7 2
Shooting Accuracy 37% 12%
Possession 43% 57%
Passes 364 492
Passes Success 74% 81%
Crosses 15 23
Crosses Success 47% 22%
Corners 6 5
Tackles 15 11
Tackles Success 53% 64%
Saves 1 5
Fouls 13 12
Offsides 2 1
Yellows 4 1
Reds 1 1
source: SkySports
Midway through the half, Preston took the lead. Billy Bodin's corner from the left-hand side floated over to the far post, where Maguire escaped the clutches of Alfie Mawson and Aboubakar Kamara, swivelled 180 degrees, and lashed a shot past Marek Rodak.

Fulham were then, needlessly, reduced to 10 men after Bauer felt the full force of Odoi's shoulder in his face, but the numerical disadvantage lasted all of 17 minutes as Rafferty cynically brought Bryan down on halfway.

The absence of Tom Cairney was evident after the break, particularly after Nugent - who played for Preston between 2005 and 2007 - tapped home after getting the better of Mawson in an aerial duel inside the six-yard box.

However, the visitors did manage to fashion some late chances.

Stefan Johansen saw a curling shot cannon off the underside of the bar, before Mitrovic set up a tense finale when he pulled one back with a deflected shot from the edge of the box.

Their subsequent efforts were futile, but a smart save from second half substitute Tom Barkhuizen by Rodak prevented it from getting any worse.

Preston's Alex Neil: "Football at this level is fine margins. We've had chances against West Brom, we didn't take them, we got punished.

Same as Saturday against QPR. I think tonight, although we took two, we probably had another two or three really good chances in the second half to finish it off.

"But Fulham are a good team.

The one thing I will say is…when you go down to 10 men each, that pitch becomes massive and it's a bit like a basketball game.

I thought it was an entertaining game, a lot of chances both ends and just, thankfully, we came out the right end."

Fulham's Scott Parker: "We certainly didn't defend the long ball that well; every long ball that went up caused us a problem.

They were sloppy goals, defensively, and then on the flip side of that we get into very good positions, we get to the edge of their box really well, but we lacked quality in those areas.

"At both ends of the pitch tonight we just weren't good enough, to be honest with you."

Preston North End: Rudd, Rafferty, Bauer, Huntington, Hughes, Pearson (Clarke 83), Bodin (Harrop 84), Browne, Potts, Maguire, Nugent (Barkhuizen 75)

Unused substitutes: Hudson, Bayliss, Ledson, Stockley

Maguire 23 (right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Alan Browne with a headed pass following a corner.)
Nugent 52 (right footed shot from very close range to the bottom right corner.)

Booked: Pearson (34,f), Browne (75,f), Huntington (75,d), Potts (83,f)

Sent Off: Rafferty (45,f)

Fulham: Rodak, Christie, Mawson (Kebano 60), Ream, Odoi, Onomah, Johansen, Knockaert (De La Torre 90), Cavaleiro (Bryan 32), Kamara, Mitrovic

Unused substitutes: Bettinelli, O'Riley, Harris, Taylor-Crossdale

Mitrovic 81(right footed shot from outside the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Neeskens Kebano.)

Booked: Onomah (88,f)

Sent Off: Odoi (28,f),

Referee: Keith Stroud (Hampshire)

Attendance: 10,093

Source Sky Sports
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