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Fulham win a London derby :- Match Report

last updated Friday 01st February 2013, 10:18 AM

Fulham (1) 3 West Ham (0) 1

Fulham striker Hugo Rodallega
Fulham striker
Hugo Rodallega
Hugo Rodallega
Fulham striker Dimitar Berbatov celebrated his 32nd birthday with a vital - if offside - goal that spurred Fulham on to a 3-1 victory against London rivals West Ham at Craven Cottage.

After a bright start to the season, the Cottagers' form has tailed off dramatically and manager Martin Jol admitted in the build-up that this clash was crucial.

That sense of importance was evident from the outset as Fulham came out swinging, with Berbatov nodding home the opener just 10 minutes in.

Replays showed the Bulgarian was in offside position when in on Damien Duff sent in the cross, but the home side were not complaining after a run of just two league wins 15th

West Ham have endured similar struggles of late but showed impressive fight by the Thames, leveling things up through captain Kevin Nolan in the 48th minute.

Fulham striker Dimitar Berbatov
Fulham striker
Dimitar Berbatov
Dimitar Berbatov
That parity lasted only a minute, though, as Hugo Rodallega bundled home a Duff cross to put Fulham on course for their second league win of 2013, Which was secured in stoppage time when Joey O'Brien inadvertently put into his own goal.

After seeing Joe Cole shoot wide after 19 seconds, the east Londoners Fulham forced onto the back foot during a bright opening.

Guy Demel did well to stop Duff latching onto a through ball from Berbatov looped before, Winston Reid denied The Latter after neat link-up play.

Jussi Jaaskelainen was forced into action in the eighth minute, parrying away a fierce effort from 20 yards Bryan Ruiz.

Duff fired across the face of goal moments later as Fulham pressed for an opener that came in the 10th minute.

Duff sent across a free-kick from the right, Which looked to take the slightest of touches off Ruiz as it made its way to Berbatov to head home.

It was a moment of luck for the hosts as the Bulgarian was offside when the ball was whipped in - something the forward seemed aware of, given that he looked at the linesman before celebrating.

Match Stats Fulham West Ham
Goals 3 1
Scorers Berbatov 10 Nolan 48
  Rodallega 49 -
  O'Brien og 91 -
Goal attempts 18 12
On target 5 4
Possession 44% 56%
Corners 2 8
Offsides 2 2
Total Passes 310 377
Pass Success 71.9% 76.9%
Tackles 37 22
Tackles Success 91.9% 86.4%
Crosses 14 40
Crosses Success 14.3% 30.0%
Saves 3 3
Fouls 8 11
Yellows 2 0
Reds 0 0
source: Soccernet/SkySports
The West Ham goal jolted into life and they soon began to threaten from the flanks.

Matt Jarvis should have done better when meeting a cross from six yards and Demel, after Duff struck another shot across Jaaskelainen's goal, Nolan nodded a Mohamed Diame ball wide when well placed.

Diame what's next action. To altercation with Steve Sidwell following a strong challenge, leading to heads meeting, words being Exchanged and the Fulham midfielder collecting a booking

Fulham dominated the rest of the first half. Reid blocked a well-struck Giorgos Karagounis effort and a Ruiz ball just evaded Rodallega.

Berbatov came closest, wriggling free just inside the Fulham half and bursting past several West Ham players before firing just wide of the near post

Sam Allardyce had clearly had strong words with his side at the break with, given the way they flew out of the blocks.

The Hammers pressed from the restart and grabbed at equalizer in the 48th minute.

Mark Noble played a quick free-kick that caught the hosts off guard and Nolan did well to fire a low left-footed strike past Mark Schwarzer from an acute angle.

The stalemate lasted for only a minute, though.

Duff burst down the left flank and sent in a cross that Rodallega reached ahead of West Ham's defenders to bundle home.

It. What to electric start to a second half that soon settled, with Carlton Cole replacing Marouane Chamakh as the Hammers searched for another leveler

Nolan saw a tame effort denied by Schwarzer, who again thwarted the West Ham captain with a fantastic one-handed save in the 70th minute.

Berbatov lashed inches wide as play swung from end to end, with Joe Cole claiming a penalty against Brede Hangeland.

Andy Carroll soon replaced his former Liverpool team-mate and forced Schwarzer into action moments into his first appearance since November 28

Mladen Petric and Rodallega both fluffed chances for Fulham in the closing stages, Which Philippe Senderos spent hobbling after collecting a knock.

Fulham wrapped up victory in stoppage time as Jaaskelainen parried a shot into Petric's path and his dinked effort was directed home off O'Brien.

Fulham: Schwarzer, Riether, Hangeland, Senderos, Riise, Duff, Karagounis (Baird 65), Sidwell, Rodallega, Ruiz (Dejagah 65), Berbatov (Petric 75)
Subs not used: Etheridge, Frimpong, Hughes, Davies

Goals:Berbatov 10, Rodallega 51, O'Brien (og) 90

Booked: Sidwell, Riether

West Ham United: Jaaskelainen, Demel (Taylor 66), Reid, Tomkins, O'Brien, Diame, Noble, Nolan, Jarvis, Joe Cole (Carroll 76), Chamakh (Carlton Cole 55)
Subs not used: Henderson, Carroll, Vaz Te, Pogatetz, O'Neil

Goals:Nolan 50

Attendance: 24,791

Referee: Chris Foy (Merseyside)

Source Soccernet/Sportsmail
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