Saturday 25 March 2006, 3:00pm at Villa Park, Birmingham
Barclays Premier League
Aston Villa
Fulham FC

58' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Gabriel Agbonlahor
Off:Lee Hendrie

73' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Juan Pablo Angel
Off:Luke Moore

62' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Tomasz Radzinski
Off:Collins John

Fulham and Aston Villa fought out a close contest at Villa Park which finished with the Whites gaining their fourth away draw of the season.

Chris Coleman named an unchanged starting line up from the side that took to the field against Chelsea at Craven Cottage last Sunday. Villa were without two key players with Mellberg and Baros both injured.

The early exchanges were fairly quiet but it was Fulham who threatened first.  Having won a corner on the right, Pembridge’s flag kick brought a shout from Fulham for a handball which went unheeded by Referee Mason.

Soon after Collins John had a clear run on goal but pulled his shot wide. Villa’s first threat came from a Hendrie cross which Pearce hooked out for a corner.

In the 17th minute Liam Rosenior surged down the left flank, his cross was headed out to McBride on the right edge of the box, the American put across a waist-high ball which Collins John volleyed over the bar.

Hendrie continued to be the biggest threat to Fulham with a stunning shot which brushed the roof of the net with Crossley stranded.

Villa were now coming more into the game and, after 25 minutes, Luke Moore hit a fierce shot on the turn from distance.

At the other end Zat Knight climbed high to head just wide. An almighty scramble in the box came after McCann saw his shot blocked by Crossley, with both he and Barry having efforts blocked, the latter ending in a failed appeal for handball.

Malbranque almost put Fulham ahead within seconds of the restart when he ran on to a flick from Collins John, unfortunately he pulled his shot wide with only the keeper to beat.

Villa’s first effort of the half came when a Barry run forced a corner on the left, Hendrie’s flag kick curled deep into the six yard box but was put over the bar by the head of McCann.

Soon after Boa Morte sent Rosenior away on the left, his cross caused a moment of concern when Sorensen mishandled on the line.

In the 57th minute Crossley was forced to make a smart save from Davisfollowing another strong run from Barry. Villa then replaced Hendrie with Agbonlahor. For Fulham, Tomasz Radzinski entered the fray on 62 minutes replacing Collins John.

On 67 minutes the Canadian international set up a shooting chance for Malbranque who let fly from the edge of the box, forcing Sorensen to dive low to hold his effort. Malbranque soon had another similar effort spilt by the Villa keeper but there was no one on hand to take advantage.

As the second half wore on Fulham began to dominate proceedings with Brown and Malbranque at the hub of most moves and the elusive goal almost arrived when Malbranque fired a low effort across the box just ahead of Radzinski’s run. 

Match Information

Competition: Barclays Premier League

Date: Saturday 25 March 2006
Kick-off: 3:00pm

Venue: Villa Park, Birmingham
Attendance: 32,605

Referee: Lee Mason

Aston Villa

Line-up: Sørensen; de la Cruz, Hughes, Ridgewell, Bouma; Hendrie (Agbonlahor 58'), Barry, Steven Davis, McCann; Kevin Phillips, Moore (Angel 73')

Unused substitutes: Taylor, Cahill, Gardner


Line-up: Crossley; Volz, Pearce, Knight, Rosenior; Malbranque, Pembridge, Brown, Boa Morte; McBride, John (Radzinski 62')

Unused substitutes: Warner, Christanval, Goma, Jensen

As It Stood Table

Pos Club Pl Pts
1 Chelsea 31 78
2 Liverpool 32 64
3 Manchester United 29 63
4 Tottenham Hotspur 30 52
5 Blackburn Rovers 31 52
6 Arsenal 30 50
7 Bolton Wanderers 28 48
8 Wigan Athletic 31 46
9 West Ham United 30 45
10 Everton 31 43
11 Manchester City 31 40
12 Newcastle United 30 39
13 Charlton Athletic 30 39
14 Fulham 32 36
15 Aston Villa 31 35
16 Middlesbrough 29 34
17 West Bromwich Albion 30 27
18 Birmingham City 29 24
19 Portsmouth 30 24
20 Sunderland 31 10
Aston Villa (4-4-2)
  • 29Thomas Sørensen
  • 23Ulises de la Cruz
  • 18Aaron Hughes
  • 19Liam Ridgewell
  • 3Wilfred Bouma
  • 7Lee Hendrie
  • 6Gareth Barry
  • 12Steven Davis
  • 8Gavin McCann
  • 9Kevin Phillips
  • 8Luke Moore
  • 13Stuart Taylor
  • 21Gary Cahill
  • 26Craig Gardner
  • 9Juan Pablo Angel
  • 11Gabriel Agbonlahor
Fulham (4-4-2)
  • 1Mark Crossley
  • 2Moritz Volz
  • 35Ian Pearce
  • 6Zat Knight
  • 17Liam Rosenior
  • 4Steed Malbranque
  • 7Mark Pembridge
  • 9Michael Brown
  • 11Luis Boa Morte
  • 20Brian McBride
  • 15Collins John
  • 12Tony Warner
  • 19Philippe Christanval
  • 24Alain Goma
  • 33Niclas Jensen
  • 13Tomasz Radzinski