Saturday 29 April 2006, 3:00pm at Etihad Stadium, Manchester
Barclays Premier League
Manchester City
Manchester City
Dunne 69'
Fulham FC
John 84'; Malbranque 90'

69' Goal

Richard Dunne

45' Yellow Card

Joey Barton Card was given for a foul

66' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Georgios Samaras
Off:Darius Vassell

80' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Willo Flood
Off:Antoine Sibierski

84' Goal

Collins John

90' Goal

Steed Malbranque

45'+34 Yellow Card

Steed Malbranque Card was given for a foul

68' Yellow Card

Papa Bouba Diop Card was given for a foul

77' Yellow Card

Philippe Christanval Card was given for a foul

26' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Philippe Christanval
Off:Zat Knight

66' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Collins John
Off:Heidar Helguson

Fulham claimed a dramatic first away win of the season following late goals from Collins John and Steed Malbranque after falling behind to a goal from Richard Dunne in the second half.

Having secured Premiership safety with the home win over Wigan, Chris Coleman elected to field an unchanged team up at Eastlands where the was looking to achieve their first away win of the season.

Fulham almost took a dramatic first minute lead when Luis Boa Morte swung a long pass toward the right side of the City box, Helguson neatly controlling the ball before passing to Liam Rosenior who shot inches wide of the far post. City’s first effort came the shape of a tame shot from Sibierski which failed to trouble Antti Niemi.

Simon Elliott came close in the tenth minute with a rasping drive which David James was forced to tip over the bar, a minute later City forced their first corner of the game with Sibierski rising high to head over from Barton’s flag kick.

Referee Walton penalised Sommeil for handball as he tussled with McBride on 17 minutes, Rosenior swung in a dangerous free kick which was met by the head of Pearce but James gathered easily.

Fulham suffered an injury blow seven minutes later when Knight clashed heads with Helguson following a Barton corner, Knight was led off after treatment and soon after replaced by Phillippe Christanval. There was more drama as City fans appealed for a penalty when Dunne went over in the box but Referee Walton awarded a corner.

The home side were now coming into the game and Riera’s left wing centre found its way across the face of the Fulham goal where Sinclair was on hand to send a low volley into the side netting.

Fulham’s best moves seemed to come from the right flank and Malbranque in particular was taking advantage, finding room to plant a cross on to the head of McBride who just failed to keep the effort on target, moments later the US striker cut in from the left to fire just wide of goal.

Next to try his luck from distance was Rosenior who saw his effort deflected wide. Boa then arrived in the six yard box to meet a cross from Elliott but could not direct his header on target.

In the 40th minute Sinclair caused a rare moment of concern when he let fly from distance after receiving a short pass from Reyna, Niemi failed to hold the initial shot but was able to recover.

The Fulham keeper was soon in action again after Sibierski got in behind the Fulham defence, blocking the ball with his body, moments later he held onto a speculative effort from Barton who a minute later was booked following a strong challenge on Malbranque.

The first incident of the second half saw Diop harshly penalised for a foul on Sibierski, fortunately Dunne’s free kick was blocked by the Fulham wall. Sibierski continued to prove a threat and Niemi had to move quickly to take the ball of his head following a right wing centre.

Darius Vassell was next to try for the home side, Barton found Sibierski on the edge of the box he threaded a neat pass to Vassell but Niemi reacted quickly to block the shot. The Fulham goal was almost breached when Sibierski fired a low cross from the left and Vassell was just inches away from connecting with the ball just a couple of yards from goal.

Sibierski was certainly at the heart of every City move, firing in another long range shot which Niemi failed to hold, Pearce conceding a corner from which Distin headed over the bar.

Both sides made substitutions on 65 minutes with Collins John, who scored at Eastlands last season, replacing Helguson. City brought on Greek star Samaras for Vassall. A minute later City were ahead when Diop conceded a free kick which was swung high towards the far post, Richards headed across goal and Dunne volleyed in from close range.

Diop was booked in the build up to the goal and Fulham soon had a second player cautioned when Christanval was booked for a foul on Sibierski. The flurry of yellow continued as Malbranque received a booking for foul on Sibierski.

City withdrew Sibierski and Fulham immediately began to go on the offensive. The scores were levelled after 84 minutes when McBride surged into the box finding Boa Morte who slid a pass to Collins John who knocked the ball into goal from close range. Samaras seemed to have put City back in front when he moved smartly to lob Niemi but somehow Liam Rosenior hooked the ball out from under the bar.

In the final minutes Fulham broke away to take the lead with Malbranque racing onto a Boa Morte pass to score with a low shot from just inside the box. 

Match Information

Competition: Barclays Premier League

Date: Saturday 29 April 2006
Kick-off: 3:00pm

Venue: Etihad Stadium, Manchester
Attendance: 41,128

Referee: Peter Walton

Manchester City

Line-up: James; Richards, Distin, Dunne, Sommeil; Riera, Barton, Reyna, Sinclair; Vassell (Samaras 66'), Sibierski (Flood 80')

Unused substitutes: Weaver, Jihai, Musampa


Line-up: Niemi; Rosenior, Pearce, Knight (Christanval 26'), Bridge; Malbranque, Elliott, Diop, Boa Morte; McBride, Helguson (John 66')

Unused substitutes: Crossley, Volz, Radzinski

As It Stood Table

Pos Club Pl Pts
1 Chelsea 36 91
2 Manchester United 36 79
3 Liverpool 37 79
4 Tottenham Hotspur 36 60
5 Arsenal 35 58
6 Newcastle United 37 55
7 Blackburn Rovers 35 54
8 Bolton Wanderers 35 52
9 Wigan Athletic 37 51
10 West Ham United 36 49
11 Everton 37 49
12 Charlton Athletic 36 47
13 Fulham 36 45
14 Manchester City 36 43
15 Middlesbrough 35 43
16 Aston Villa 37 39
17 Portsmouth 37 38
18 Birmingham City 37 34
19 West Bromwich Albion 36 30
20 Sunderland 35 12
Manchester City (4-4-2)
  • 1David James
  • 2Micah Richards
  • 15Sylvain Distin
  • 22Richard Dunne
  • 2David Sommeil
  • 19Albert Riera
  • 8Joey Barton
  • Claudio Reyna
  • 28Trevor Sinclair
  • 12Darius Vassell
  • 10Antoine Sibierski
  • 12Nicky Weaver
  • 17Sun Jihai
  • 14Kiki Musampa
  • 44Willo Flood
  • 20Georgios Samaras
Fulham (4-4-2)
  • 29Antti Niemi
  • 17Liam Rosenior
  • 35Ian Pearce
  • 6Zat Knight
  • 31Wayne Bridge
  • 4Steed Malbranque
  • 27Simon Elliott
  • 14Papa Bouba Diop
  • 11Luis Boa Morte
  • 20Brian McBride
  • 10Heidar Helguson
  • 1Mark Crossley
  • 2Moritz Volz
  • 19Philippe Christanval
  • 13Tomasz Radzinski
  • 15Collins John