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Fulham held by Tottenham keeper

last updated Monday 28th December 2009, 10:31 AM
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Mandeep Sanghera at BBCSport


Fulham 0 - 0 Tottenham


A string of fine saves from Tottenham keeper Heurelho Gomes earned his side a point against Fulham.

Gomes was in impressive form with the best of his efforts coming when he palmed a Bobby Zamora header wide.

The Spurs keeper was beaten by a Clint Dempsey free-kick but that was kept out after it came back off the crossbar.

Fulham keeper Mark Schwarzer was rarely called upon but, when he was, he brilliantly kept out a Peter Crouch shot and Jermaine Jenas's follow-up.

Schwarzer's double save came late on and made sure his side did not lose a game they had dominated for large spells.

But Spurs, who started with top scorer Jermain Defoe on the bench, racked up a third clean sheet in a row for the first time since August 2005.

The display from Gomes also provided redemption of sorts after he had fumbled a shot into his own net when Fulham beat Tottenham last season.

The home side have defeated Liverpool and Manchester United at Craven Cottage this season and they have also not been beaten at home since 26 September.

It was easy to see why they boast such an impressive recent record as they quickly seized the initiative from Spurs and created plenty of chances.

Fulham cleverly manoeuvred the ball around with a purpose and penetration, with the hold-up play of striker Bobby Zamora proving a regular base from which to launch attacks.

Damien Duff had an early well-struck half-volley blocked and then gathered by Gomes before Zoltan Gera's improvised attempt to flick in a low driven John Pantsil cross went straight at the Spurs stopper.

Gomes was being kept busy and, when Spurs only managed to clear a corner to Danny Murphy, the Brazilian did well to tip over a left-footed strike from the Fulham midfielder.

The Spurs keeper was beaten when his dive came nowhere near to stopping a 30-yard Dempsey free-kick but the effort rattled the crossbar and stayed out.

Tottenham were feeling the strain and their inability to retain possession for any decent length of time was not helping their cause.

Aaron Lennon switched from the right to the left flank to try to get some joy but the move had little impact in providing Spurs with any attacking impetus.

Niko Kranjcar's 20-yard free-kick going just wide proved a rare moment of threat from the visitors.

Spurs eventually started to pressure Fulham and stopped giving them the time and space to work their passing moves but manager Harry Redknapp's side still lacked a goal threat.

And, despite the Cottagers spending a spell on the back-foot, they still forced Gomes into another smart save when the sprawling keeper had to claw away a Zamora header.

Gomes saved a Dempsey strike before he brilliantly denied Zamora again when he palmed another header wide.

Schwarzer was called into action late on for Fulham and matched the heroics of his counterpart Gomes by denying Crouch and Jenas.

Duff sent a shot wide across goal as Fulham had a late chance but both teams had to settle for a point in an entertaining goalless draw.

Fulham boss Roy Hodgson:
"It was a good game. We played well in first half against a very good Tottenham team.

"We probably had better of the chances but we were also thankful to a great save from Mark Schwarzer.

"I thought for long periods we were threatening and without Gomes we could have had a goal or two."

Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp:
"It was a fair result.

"We've had a great start to the season and this is a good away point. We're in good form. I'd love to be able to get the club into the Champions League.

"It is possible. It's the most open league and everybody in the top group has got a chance to make the top four."
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