Saturday 11 December 2010, 3:00pm at Craven Cottage, London
Barclays Premier League
Fulham FC
Fulham
0
Sunderland
Sunderland
0
Fulham and Sunderland played out a tight goalless draw at Craven Cottage on Saturday afternoon.

45' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Andrew Johnson
Off:Diomansy Kamara

71' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Eddie Johnson
Off:Carlos Salcido

77' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Chris Baird
Off:Dickson Etuhu

80' Yellow Card

Kieran Richardson Card was given for a foul

9' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Ahmed Elmohamady
Off:Anton Ferdinand

52' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Asamoah Gyan
Off:David Meyler

77' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Boudewijn Zenden
Off:Danny Welbeck

0
15
30
45
60
75
90

With both sides eager to make their mark, the game got off to a high-tempo start with firm challenges coming with frantic regularity. The Whites dealt well with Sunderland’s congested midfield early on and were able to gain the upper hand with a number of interceptions and neat passes.

Clint Dempsey was the first to fire a shot on target in anger when he attempted a looping volley from 25 yards on seven minutes, bringing a camera-friendly catch from Simon Mignolet.

Steve Bruce’s men were forced into making their first change of the afternoon on 10 minutes when central defender Anton Ferdinand pulled up with a hamstring complaint. He was replaced by Ahmed Elmohamady.

Darren Bent’s header wide on the 20 minutes mark proved to be the best attacking moment Sunderland were able to muster in the opening exchanges. The action, for the most part, saw Fulham looking to play probing passes in behind the Black Cats’ defence whilst Steve Bruce’s men looked to hit Fulham on the counter-attack. Clear cut chances were few and far between.

A chaotic sequence of events on 30 minutes almost created a dangerous situation for the Fulham defence, thankfully Carlos Salcido managed to clear the danger and allow the Whites’ back line to regroup. But Sunderland finished the first-half stronger.

A penetrative run down the left flank from Phillip Bardsley on 36 minutes allowed the Sunderland fullback to whip in a dangerous cross which was glanced wide by Bent from four yards out.

Andrew Johnson started the second-half in place of Diomansy Kamara, joining up with Zoltan Gera in attack. Johnson’s presence immediately had Sunderland’s back line unsettled, especially when dealing with balls behind the defensive line.

Sunderland introduced Asamoah Gyan on 53 minutes in place of David Meyler, as Steve Bruce looked to lead with two players up front.

Carlos Salcido’s well-placed cross on 55 minutes just evaded the lunge of Clint Dempsey as Fulham upped their attacking efforts. Moments later a cross from Dempsey had the Sunderland defence at odds with each other again. Mignolet missed the punch, instead connecting with the face of Dickson Etuhu who needed a few minutes of treatment before continuing.

The Whites almost forced the ball over the line on 68 minutes after Simon Davies’ corner caused mayhem in the penalty area. From the goalmouth scramble that ensued Andrew Johnson saw his snapshot saved by the feet of Mignolet before Gera’s follow-up shot was forced wide.

Mark Hughes made his final two substitutions of the match. Eddie Johnson came on for Dickson Etuhu, joining Andrew Johnson in attack whilst Chris Baird replaced Carlos Salcido.

A frantic spell of action on 79 minutes saw Clint Dempsey’s shot apparently charged down in the area by the arm of a Sunderland player before Gera was pulled back on the edge of the area. Gera’s free kick was routinely caught by Mignolet.

Bolo Zenden needed a lengthy spell of treatment on the pitch after catching a powerful John Pantsil clearance in the face. However, the Dutch midfielder recovered sufficiently to almost play Darren Bent through on goal; fortunately Bent had just strayed offside - ending the danger.

Both sides desperately searched for a late winner in the five minutes of added time, but neither was able to find the net.

Match Information

Competition: Barclays Premier League

Date: Saturday 11 December 2010
Kick-off: 3:00pm

Venue: Craven Cottage, London
Attendance: 24,462

Referee: Neil Starbrick

Fulham

Line-up: Schwarzer; Pantsil, Hangeland, Hughes, Salcido (Johnson 71'); Davies, Murphy, Etuhu (Baird 77'), Dempsey; Kamara (Johnson 45'), Gera

Unused substitutes: Stockdale, Kelly, Duff, Greening

Sunderland

Line-up: Mignolet; Onuoha, Mensah, Ferdinand (Elmohamady 9'), Bardsley; Meyler (Gyan 52'), Henderson, Cattermole, Richardson; Campbell, Welbeck (Zenden 77')

Unused substitutes: Gordon, Angeleri, Turner, Malbranque

As It Stood Table

Pos Club Pl Pts
1 Arsenal 16 32
2 Manchester City 17 32
3 Manchester United 15 31
4 Chelsea 16 30
5 Tottenham Hotspur 16 26
6 Sunderland 17 24
7 Bolton Wanderers 16 23
8 Liverpool 16 22
9 Blackpool 16 22
10 West Bromwich Albion 17 22
11 Stoke City 17 21
12 Blackburn Rovers 16 21
13 Aston Villa 17 20
14 Newcastle United 16 19
15 Everton 17 18
16 Birmingham City 16 18
17 Fulham 17 16
18 Wigan Athletic 17 16
19 Wolverhampton Wanderers 16 12
20 West Ham United 17 12
Fulham (4-4-2)
  • 1Mark Schwarzer
  • 4John Pantsil
  • 5Brede Hangeland
  • 18Aaron Hughes
  • 3Carlos Salcido
  • 29Simon Davies
  • 13Danny Murphy
  • 20Dickson Etuhu
  • 23Clint Dempsey
  • 15Diomansy Kamara
  • 11Zoltán Gera
Substitutes
  • 12David Stockdale
  • 2Stephen Kelly
  • 6Chris Baird
  • 16Damien Duff
  • 27Jonathan Greening
  • 8Andrew Johnson
  • 21Eddie Johnson
Sunderland (4-4-2)
  • 22Simon Mignolet
  • 15Nedum Onuoha
  • 5John Mensah
  • 29Anton Ferdinand
  • 2Phillip Bardsley
  • 18David Meyler
  • 10Jordan Henderson
  • 6Lee Cattermole
  • 11Kieran Richardson
  • 9Fraizer Campbell
  • 17Danny Welbeck
Substitutes
  • 1Craig Gordon
  • Marcos Angeleri
  • 4Michael Turner
  • 7Boudewijn Zenden
  • 8Steed Malbranque
  • 27Ahmed Elmohamady
  • 3Asamoah Gyan