Saturday 1 January 2011, 3:00pm at White Hart Lane, London
Barclays Premier League
Tottenham Hotspur
Tottenham Hotspur
1
Bale 42'
Fulham FC
Fulham
0
Spurs took all three points from Saturday's London derby at White Hart Lane but Fulham deserved at least a point after producing another fine away performance on New Year's Day.

42' Goal

Gareth Bale

25' Yellow Card

Michael Dawson Card was given for a foul

87' Yellow Card

Benoit Assou-Ekotto Card was given for a foul

26' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Vedran Corluka
Off:Alan Hutton

65' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Peter Crouch
Off:Roman Pavlyuchenko

82' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Jermaine Jenas
Off:Rafael van der Vaart

18' Yellow Card

John Pantsil Card was given for a foul

81' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Zoltán Gera
Off:Damien Duff

0
15
30
45
60
75
90

Following Tuesday night’s impressive two-nil away victory over Stoke City at the Britannia Stadium, Mark Hughes retained the same starting eleven for Saturday’s New Year’s Day derby against Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane.

Fulham started at the Lane where they left off in Stoke – playing with real confidence and commitment. Hughes’ side took the game to Spurs, moving the ball at pace through midfield and down the flanks with some impressive one-touch football.

Fulham created arguably the first real opening of the match before the the first ten minutes of play had elapsed. Following an early free-kick opportunity after 3 minutes that van der Vaart smashed against the wall from 25 yards, Fulham carved their way through Tottenham’s defence. Etuhu, sprinting into the area, latched onto a through ball but just failed to unleash a shot on goal before being marshalled away to safety by Gallas.

The first booking of the game came Fulham’s way after 18 minutes, with Pantsil finding his name in the book after an over exuberant challenge on Bale down Fulham’s right hand side. On the other flank Chris Baird was putting in another faultless performance against Lennon, neutralising one of the game’s most potent attacking threats.

Spurs captain Michael Dawson joined Pantsil in the book after 25 minutes after a crude challenge on Clint Dempsey. Dawson’s booking preceded the first substitution of the game, which saw Harry Redknapp replace the injured Alan Hutton with Vedran Corluka at right back.

Right on the half hour mark Lennon went in search of possession in a central position and after a quick counter attack the winger fired off a shot form 25 yards. A deflection took all the sting out of Lennon’s effort but van der Vaart followed suit moments later with a stinging strike from 25 yards.

Opportunities were few and far between for both sides as half-time approached. Two well organised defences nullified both team’s attacking potency whilst Fulham rarely looked under any real pressure at the back. That was to the credit of Hughes’ Team, who played with real confidence and verve during the first half.

However, four minutes before half-time Spurs got a huge slice of luck when Gareth Bale’s headed in van der Vaart's free-kick into the net. Fulham did not deserve such misfortune after matching the home side in every respect during the first 45.

Both side’s remained unchanged for the second period as Fulham looked to reduce the deficit. Danny Murphy was looking to orchestrate proceedings from the middle of the park with some probing passes over Spurs’ defence but to no avail.

Ten minutes into the second half Fulham earned a free-kick 30 yards from goal and Chris Baird duly obliged. Unfortunately he couldn’t replicate his set piece from Tuesday night as Tottenham’s wall stood firm.

Just after the hour mark had passed Fulham moved up a gear and almost pulled the game level on two occasions. First Spurs got lucky again when Gallas cleared the ball off the goal line as Dempsey steamed in. Then Andrew Johnson’s shot was saved by Gomes seconds before a penalty appeal from the striker was turned down.

Harry Redknapp looked to stem the flow of pressure by changing the focus at the other end, replacing Roman Pavlyuchenko with Peter Crouch. 15 minutes from time Spurs first opportunity of the second half fell to Bale 12 yards from goal. Fortunately the Welsh international sent his side-footed volley over Schwarzer’s bar. Two minutes later Dawson fired over from exactly the same spot following a Tottenham corner.

Redknapp made his second change of the game ten minutes from time, introducing Jenas for van der Vaart. Mark Hughes followed suit, taking off Damien Duff for Zoltan Gera.

With seven minutes remaining Fulham threw everything at Spurs, forcing the home side into some last ditch defending to deny the Whites. Whilst Fulham attacked at will Hughes’ side never looked threatened by the counter attack. In fact Aaron Hughes was so commanding in his own half that all the focus remained in Tottenham’s half. Hughes was quite simply world class on Saturday.

Fulham continued to attack at will but to no avail. To their credit, Gallas and Dawson excelled in central defence and kept Fulham from finding a way back into the game. The points went Tottenham's way thanks to a huge slice of luck in the first half but Fulham can take heart from Saturday's match. If they can replicate the form they have shown this week they will soon be moving up the Barclays Premier League table. Fulham will look to step out of the bottom three on Tuesday night when they welcome West Bromwich Albion to the Cottage.

Match Information

Competition: Barclays Premier League

Date: Saturday 1 January 2011
Kick-off: 3:00pm

Venue: White Hart Lane, London
Attendance: 35,603

Referee: Mike Jones

Tottenham Hotspur

Line-up: Gomes; Hutton (Corluka 26'), Dawson, Gallas, Assou-Ekotto; Lennon, Palacios, Modric, Bale; van der Vaart (Jenas 82'); Pavlyuchenko (Crouch 65')

Unused substitutes: Pletikosa, Bassong, Kranjcar, Sandro

Fulham

Line-up: Schwarzer; Pantsil, Hangeland, Hughes, Baird; Duff (Gera 81'), Etuhu, Murphy, Davies; Johnson, Dempsey

Unused substitutes: Stockdale, Salcido, Halliche, Dikgacoi, Greening, Kamara

As It Stood Table

Pos Club Pl Pts
1 Manchester United 19 41
2 Manchester City 21 41
3 Arsenal 19 36
4 Tottenham Hotspur 20 36
5 Chelsea 19 34
6 Sunderland 21 30
7 Bolton Wanderers 21 29
8 Stoke City 20 27
9 Liverpool 19 25
10 Blackpool 18 25
11 Blackburn Rovers 21 25
12 Newcastle United 19 22
13 Everton 20 22
14 West Bromwich Albion 20 22
15 West Ham United 21 20
16 Aston Villa 19 20
17 Wigan Athletic 19 20
18 Birmingham City 18 19
19 Fulham 20 19
20 Wolverhampton Wanderers 20 18
Tottenham Hotspur (4-4-1-1)
  • 1Heurelho Gomes
  • 2Alan Hutton
  • 20Michael Dawson
  • 13William Gallas
  • 32Benoit Assou-Ekotto
  • 7Aaron Lennon
  • 12Wilson Palacios
  • 14Luka Modric
  • 11Gareth Bale
  • 10Rafael van der Vaart
  • 9Roman Pavlyuchenko
Substitutes
  • 37Stipe Pletikosa
  • 19Sébastien Bassong
  • 22Vedran Corluka
  • 21Jermaine Jenas
  • 21Niko Kranjcar
  • 30Sandro
  • 15Peter Crouch
Fulham (4-4-2)
  • 1Mark Schwarzer
  • 4John Pantsil
  • 5Brede Hangeland
  • 18Aaron Hughes
  • 6Chris Baird
  • 16Damien Duff
  • 20Dickson Etuhu
  • 13Danny Murphy
  • 29Simon Davies
  • 8Andrew Johnson
  • 23Clint Dempsey
Substitutes
  • 12David Stockdale
  • 3Carlos Salcido
  • 32Rafik Halliche
  • 11Zoltán Gera
  • 26Kagisho Dikgacoi
  • 27Jonathan Greening
  • 15Diomansy Kamara