Saturday 16 May 2009, 3:00pm at St James' Park, Newcastle
Barclays Premier League
Newcastle United
Newcastle United
0
Fulham FC
Fulham
1
Kamara 41'
In the penultimate game of the season Diomansy Kamara's first-half goal gave Fulham all three points at Newcastle, leaving the Whites in pole position for 7th place and a spot in the Europa Leauge.

60' Red Card

Sébastien Bassong Card was given for a foul

62' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Ryan Taylor
Off:Danny Guthrie

76' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Peter Løvenkrands
Off:Jonás Gutiérrez

80' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Andy Carroll
Off:Mark Viduka

41' Goal

Diomansy Kamara
Assist by Erik Nevland

30' Yellow Card

Danny Murphy Card was given for a foul

48' Yellow Card

Erik Nevland Card was given for a foul

55' Yellow Card

Clint Dempsey Card was given for a foul

75' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Andrew Johnson
Off:Erik Nevland

0
15
30
45
60
75
90

Roy Hodgson's side put on a thoroughly professional performance during an action packed contest at St. James' Park on Saturday. As expected, Alan Shearer's side came out firing on all cylinders following Monday's morale-boosting win over Middlesbrough.

From the first whistle the game was played at a tremendous pace and the atmosphere inside St. James' Park was electric. With a place in Europe in sight Hodgson's players were certainly fired up for Saturday's contest, exemplified by a flurry of crunching tackles by Danny Murphy during the opening exchanges.

Fulham looked to test Steve Harper from distance early on with Dempsey and Kamara both trying their luck, but both efforts flew wide of goal. Newcastle's first effort on goal came after ten minutes of play. Danny Guthrie collected the ball 25 yards from goal and curled a right-footed shot towards the far post. The shot lacked disguise and allowed the ever-impressive Mark Schwarzer to collect with ease.

After 15 minutes of play Obafemi Martins smashed a thunderous effort against Fulham's post from the right hand side of the area. Martins, clean through on goal, looked odds on to score but the Nigerian international failed to find the target, much to the despair of the home crowd.

Zoltan Gera fired off Fulham's first shot on target after seventeen minutes. The Hungarian's right-footed effort across goal from the edge of the area forced Harper to dive low to his right to save but Gera's shot lacked the venom to pose any real danger.

As the half hour mark approached Fulham's well-organised display had significantly reduced the noise inside St. James' Park. The early roars had been replaced by palpable tension. Fulham Captain Murphy was certainly in combatative mood on Saturday and received the first booking of the game following a late sliding tackle on Gutierrez.

Newcastle's most promising play came down the flanks but the home side only created two notable opportunities from out wide during the first half. Fortunately for Hodgson's side both Taylor and Viduka failed to deliver a clinical finish.

Erik Nevland shaved the outside of Harper's far post on 38 minutes following a fine piece of interplay in the final third by Fulham. Five minutes before half time Diomansy Kamara scored his third goal in a week to give Fulham the lead following a superb counter attack by Roy Hodgson's side.

The move started on the edge of Fulham's area with Dempsey showing great determination to retain possession before finding Murphy in midfield. Murphy threaded the ball through to Nevland down the right flank and the Norwegian skipped behind Newcastle's defence for a one-on-one with Harper. Selflessly, Nevland cut the ball square to Kamara, who smashed his shot into the roof of Newcastle's empty net from close range.

It was a superb end to a fine first half performance by Hodgson's men and it was Fulham's travelling army of supporters who could be heard inside St. James' Park as Kamara's strike deflated the home crowd right before the interval.

Newcastle roared back at the start of the second half and Fulham were forced to soak up wave after wave of pressure.

Inside a minute of the restart Martins fired over from close range before Dickson Etuhu cleared off the line. From the resulting corner Viduka headed past Schwarzer to send the home crowd into raptures. The celebrations were short lived as Howard Webb blew for a foul. Nolan was adjudged to have impeded Schwarzer as he came to collect.

After 60 minutes Newcastle were dealt a further blow when Bassong was shown a straight red card by Howard Webb. A long ball upfield was chased by Kamara. The striker's pace was too much for Bassong who wrestled Kamara to the ground. As Newcastle's last defender Webb was left with no option but to give Bassong his marching orders.

Newcastle manager Alan Shearer reshuffled his pack immediately and replaced Guthrie with Ryan Taylor. Moments later Clint Dempsey had a valid penalty appeal turned down after the American was brought to ground on the edge of Newcastle's area.

Erik Nevland almost doubled Fulham's lead 20 minutes from time as Newcastle's pressure subsided. Fulham began to control possession with a combination of good movement and incisive passing. After some patient build up play Nevland fired in a ferocious right-footed drive which almost slipped through Harper's palms. Much to Newcastle's relief the ball looped over the cross bar.

Five minutes later Roy Hodgson made his first substitution of the game, replacing Nevland with Andy Johnson in attack. Two minutes later Brede Hangeland was forced to clear off his line after Martins wriggled past Hughes and fired goalwards. It was another highly impressive display by the Norwegian international defender on Saturday.

The tension grew inside St. James' Park as the game entered its final stages.  In added time Mark Schwarzer produced an incredible save to deny a close range header. With Newcastle going for broke Fulham created several opportunities on the counter attack and should have extended their lead before Howard Webb blew for full time.

Match Information

Competition: Barclays Premier League

Date: Saturday 16 May 2009
Kick-off: 3:00pm

Venue: St James' Park, Newcastle
Attendance: 52,114

Referee: Howard Webb

Newcastle United

Line-up: Harper; Beye, Bassong, Steven Taylor, Duff; Guthrie (Ryan Taylor 62'), Nolan, Butt, Gutiérrez (Løvenkrands 76'); Martins, Viduka (Carroll 80')

Unused substitutes: Krul, Coloccini, Smith, Shola Ameobi

Fulham

Line-up: Schwarzer; Pantsil, Hangeland, Hughes, Konchesky; Dempsey, Murphy, Etuhu, Gera; Kamara, Nevland (Johnson 75')

Unused substitutes: Zuberbühler, Kallio, Baird, Dacourt, Gray, Zamora

As It Stood Table

Pos Club Pl Pts
1 Manchester United 37 87
2 Liverpool 36 80
3 Chelsea 36 77
4 Arsenal 37 69
5 Everton 37 60
6 Aston Villa 37 59
7 Fulham 37 53
8 Tottenham Hotspur 37 51
9 West Ham United 37 48
10 Manchester City 37 47
11 Stoke City 37 45
12 Wigan Athletic 37 42
13 Bolton Wanderers 37 41
14 Blackburn Rovers 36 40
15 Portsmouth 36 38
16 Sunderland 36 36
17 Hull City 37 35
18 Newcastle United 37 34
19 Middlesbrough 37 32
20 West Bromwich Albion 36 31
Newcastle United (4-4-2)
  • 37Steve Harper
  • 21Habib Beye
  • 12Sébastien Bassong
  • 27Steven Taylor
  • 11Damien Duff
  • 8Danny Guthrie
  • 4Kevin Nolan
  • 22Nicky Butt
  • 18Jonás Gutiérrez
  • 9Obafemi Martins
  • 36Mark Viduka
Substitutes
  • 1Tim Krul
  • 2Fabricio Coloccini
  • 16Ryan Taylor
  • 9Andy Carroll
  • 11Peter Løvenkrands
  • 17Alan Smith
  • 23Shola Ameobi
Fulham (4-4-2)
  • 1Mark Schwarzer
  • 4John Pantsil
  • 5Brede Hangeland
  • 18Aaron Hughes
  • 3Paul Konchesky
  • 23Clint Dempsey
  • 13Danny Murphy
  • 20Dickson Etuhu
  • 11Zoltán Gera
  • 15Diomansy Kamara
  • 10Erik Nevland
Substitutes
  • 19Pascal Zuberbühler
  • 33Toni Kallio
  • 34Chris Baird
  • 16Olivier Dacourt
  • 17Julian Gray
  • 8Andrew Johnson
  • 9Bobby Zamora