Saturday 14 January 2012, 3:00pm at Ewood Park, Blackburn
Barclays Premier League
Blackburn Rovers
Blackburn Rovers
3
Dunn 46'; Pedersen 45'+4; Formica 79'
Fulham FC
Fulham
1
Duff 56'
A below par afternoon for the Whites on the road as they suffer a 3-1 defeat at Ewood Park.

46' Goal

David Dunn

45'+4 Goal

Morten Gamst Pedersen

79' Goal

Mauro Formica
Assist by Steven N'Zonzi

23' Red Card

Yakubu Card was given for a foul

75' Yellow Card

Morten Gamst Pedersen Card was given for a foul

30' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:David Goodwillie
Off:Radosav Petrovic

69' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Mauro Formica
Off:David Dunn

56' Goal

Damien Duff
Assist by Danny Murphy

86' Yellow Card

Philippe Senderos Card was given for a foul

36' Substitution

Player was substituted due to an injury
On:Kerim Frei
Off:Moussa Dembélé

74' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Andrew Johnson
Off:John Arne Riise

87' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Simon Davies
Off:Kerim Frei

0
15
30
45
60
75
90

The Whites had started 2012 with two impressive home wins over Arsenal and Charlton Athletic, but that form could not be carried on the road.

Martin Jol made just once change to his team from the one that had started the year in such fine style. Damien Duff returned to the side to face the club where he began his career, in place of Kerim Frei, who dropped to the bench.

Blackburn, meanwhile, were without key defender Christopher Samba, the highly regarded player who scored against the Whites in the corresponding fixture in both of the previous two seasons.

With home supporters before the match more focused on protesting about the ownership of their club than supporting their team, Fulham pressed forward first, but Bryan Ruiz’s dangerous cross from the left didn’t quite find Bobby Zamora, and Blackburn cleared the danger.

David Stockdale was the first goalkeeper to get a feel of the ball. Stephen Kelly made a brave block to deny a David Dunn volley and the ball fell to Junior Holiett. But his effort was too tame to trouble Fulham’s England stopper who clasped it with both hands.

Indeed defences at both ends were winning the early battles in a first 20 minutes that lacked any real chances at either end.

On 21 minutes came Fulham’s first real opportunity. Damien Duff crossed from deep on the right and found the head of Zamora who glanced it, looping, onto the bar. The attempt had Robinson beaten but was just off target.

Moments later came an incident which promised to change the complexion of proceedings. Danny Murphy received the ball in his own half and was met with a dangerous challenge from Yakubu. Referee Taylor had no hesitation in sending the Blackburn striker off.

In a stop-start first period thereafter Fulham’s best attempt on target came seven minutes before the break when Robinson made a superb one-handed save to palm Philippe Senderos’ header away from the top right corner of the goal after Danny Murphy’s precise free-kick delivery.

Yakubu’s dismissal had prompted a first-half substitution from Steve Kean as forward David Goodwillie was introduced in place of central midfielder Radosav Petrovic. And Fulham also made a change in the first period, bringing on Kerim Frei in place of Mousa Dembele who had received a knock earlier on.

The first 45 looked destined to remain goalless until deep into stoppage time when the referee awarded Blackburn a free-kick on the right edge of the Fulham area for a foul on Dunn. With practically the last kick of the half, Pedersen stepped up and drove a precise strike into the bottom right corner of David Stockdale’s goal to give the home side the lead at the break.

If the timing of that goal was unfortunate for Fulham then what happened within moments of the restart was worse still. With the first attack of the second period, Goodwillie had a shot blocked, but the ball fell to Dunn on the penalty spot. The midfielder found the space to pass the ball low to Stockdale’s right and into the net.

Shocked into action, Fulham took the game to their hosts and had the ball in the net themselves on 49 minutes. John Arne Riise’s powerful low free-kick was only palmed away by Robinson, and the ball went straight to the head of Dempsey who nodded it into the empty net. But the Whites’ top scorer was ruled to be in an offside position and the goal did not stand.

But on 55 minutes Fulham did pull one back. Danny Murphy released Damien Duff on the right of the area and the Irishman made it look easy as he sauntered into the box before passing the ball across goal into the far corner.

The second-half was notably more open than the first as Fulham tried to use the space afforded by their extra man to pile pressure on their hosts and attempt to rescue the game. Blackburn for their part were keen to put the result beyond doubt though and retained a determined belief that belied their league placing.

And buoyed by their by now vociferous home fans, and in desperate need of a win, Rovers continued to threaten. And they sealed the points in the 78th minute. NZonzi surged up the middle of the Fulham half with the ball and, when he spotted the run of substitute Mauro Formica, played a delightful chip over the Fulham defence. Formica followed the flight of the pass well and volleyed across Stockdale into the bottom left corner.

The Whites showed fight in the final 10 minutes, Robinson saving a low driven free-kick from Johnson amongst other attempts, but the home side held out for a vital three points as Fulham discovered that although a New Year may have begun, but wins away from home are no easier to come by.

Match Information

Competition: Barclays Premier League

Date: Saturday 14 January 2012
Kick-off: 3:00pm

Venue: Ewood Park, Blackburn
Attendance: 18,003

Referee: Anthony Taylor

Blackburn Rovers

Line-up: Robinson; Lowe, Hanley, Givet, Olsson; Pedersen, Petrovic (Goodwillie 30'), N'Zonzi, Hoilett; Dunn (Formica 69'); Yakubu

Unused substitutes: Bunn, Henley, Vukcevic, Morris, Rochina

Manager: Steve Kean

Fulham

Line-up: Stockdale; Kelly, Senderos, Hangeland, John Arne Riise (Andrew Johnson 74'); Duff, Dembélé (Frei 36' (Davies 87')), Murphy, Dempsey; Ruiz; Zamora

Unused substitutes: Etheridge, Hughes, Sidwell, Kasami

Manager: Martin Jol

As It Stood Table

Pos Club Pl Pts
1 Manchester City 20 48
2 Manchester United 21 48
3 Tottenham Hotspur 21 46
4 Chelsea 21 40
5 Arsenal 20 36
6 Liverpool 21 35
7 Newcastle United 20 33
8 Stoke City 21 30
9 Norwich City 21 28
10 Everton 21 25
11 Sunderland 21 24
12 Aston Villa 21 24
13 Swansea City 20 23
14 Fulham 21 23
15 West Bromwich Albion 21 22
16 Wolverhampton Wanderers 21 18
17 Blackburn Rovers 21 17
18 Queens Park Rangers 20 17
19 Bolton Wanderers 21 16
20 Wigan Athletic 20 15
Goals
3
1
Total Shots
14
18
Shots On Target
6
5
Passing Accuracy
81%
88%
Fouls
15
11
Corners
0
9
Offsides
3
1
Bookings
1
1
Sending Offs
1
0
Blackburn Rovers (4-4-1-1)
  • 1Paul Robinson
  • 35Jason Lowe
  • 31Grant Hanley
  • 5Gaël Givet
  • 3Martin Olsson
  • 12Morten Gamst Pedersen
  • 14Radosav Petrovic
  • 15Steven N'Zonzi
  • 23David Hoilett
  • 8David Dunn
  • 24Yakubu
Substitutes
  • 13Mark Bunn
  • 39Adam Henley
  • 10Mauro Formica
  • 29Simon Vukcevic
  • 33Josh Morris
  • 20Rubén Rochina
  • 25David Goodwillie
Manager
  • Steve Kean
Fulham (4-4-1-1)
  • 12David Stockdale
  • 2Stephen Kelly
  • 14Philippe Senderos
  • 5Brede Hangeland
  • 3John Arne Riise
  • 16Damien Duff
  • 30Moussa Dembélé
  • 13Danny Murphy
  • 23Clint Dempsey
  • 11Bryan Ruiz
  • 25Bobby Zamora
Substitutes
  • 38Neil Etheridge
  • 18Aaron Hughes
  • 4Steve Sidwell
  • 10Pajtim Kasami
  • 21Kerim Frei
  • 29Simon Davies
  • 8Andrew Johnson
Manager
  • Martin Jol
Goals
0
0
Total shots
0
0
Ball played into the final third of the pitch
0
0
Minutes played by player
0
0
Assists from open play
0
0
Crosses
0
0
Tackles
0
0
Successful aerial duels
0
0
Duel over the possession of the ball where a player wins the ball
0
0
Pass forwards
0
0
Successful dribbles
0
0
Sum of all a players ball events
0
0
Accurate passes
0
0
Key passes
0
0
Player intercepts a pass
0
0
Goalkeeper saves
0
0
Goalkeeper catches a cross
0
0