Barclays Premier League

Fulham fightback stuns Arsenal

2012-11-10 20:16
Arsene Wenger (File)

London - Mikel Arteta's failure to convert an added-time penalty summed up Arsenal's frustrations as Arsene Wenger's side squandered a two-goal lead in a 3-3 draw with Fulham at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday.

Olivier Giroud and Lukas Podolski had put the home side 2-0 up inside 23 minutes, but Fulham recovered with two goals from Dimitar Berbatov, either side of a Alex Kacaniklic header, and it took a second Giroud effort to rescue a point for Wenger's team.

Victory was denied the Gunners when Mark Schwarzer saved from Arteta in the final act of a dramatic game, but defeat would have been harsh on a spirited Fulham side.

It would have also deflected attention from another unconvincing display by Wenger's team, who let a two-goal lead slip for the second time in four days after the mid-week draw at Schalke in the Champions League.

The defensive weaknesses that have crept into Arsenal's play were once again plain to see, while Fulham confirmed the progress they have made under Martin Jol, with Berbatov again outstanding.

Wenger, though, can at least draw comfort from his side's comeback, two goals from Giroud, who has now scored four in four games, and another threatening display from Theo Walcott.

Walcott has found himself on the fringes of Wenger's plans while his contract situation remains unresolved, but he strengthened his case for the deal he wants by playing a role in both his side's opening goals on his first league start since August.

Fulham had started brightly and were arguably the dominant side before Walcott delivered a right-wing corner into the path of Giroud, who headed past away goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer in the 11th minute.

Then, when Podolski doubled Arsenal's lead 12 minutes later, it seemed the home side were on course to claim a comfortable victory.

Once again Walcott was involved, this time laying a neat flick into the path of Arteta, who picked out Podolski for the Germany international to stab the ball home from six yards.

The scoreline was harsh on Fulham, but they hit back through Berbatov, who was granted acres of space inside the Arsenal area to head home from Bryan Ruiz's corner.

Arsenal's attacking threat receded, while their defence continued to look shaky, and it was no surprise when Fulham levelled five minutes before half-time, with Berbatov again at the heart of the move.

The striker's run down the right flank was picked out by Fulham right-back Sascha Riether and Berbatov clipped a precise cross towards substitute Kacaniklic, who headed past Vito Mannone.

Giroud headed over immediately before the break but there was no doubt the momentum had swung Fulham's way.

The visitors were rewarded for their efforts mid-way through the second period when Arteta was dispossessed by Bryan Ruiz on the edge of his own box and fouled the Fulham forward as he tried to recover his mistake.

Referee Phil Dowd -- who had earlier resisted the temptation to show Fulham midfielder Steve Sidwell a second yellow card -- pointed to the spot and Berbatov beat Mannone with ease.

Arsenal looked a beaten side, but they rallied to draw level just four minutes later when Giroud and Walcott combined again.

Giroud fired a left-foot shot against the post but was presented with a second opportunity when Walcott collected the rebound and crossed for the striker to head home.

Arteta's late opportunity came when Riether was adjudged to have handled Andrey Arshavin's cross, but the Spaniard's penalty drew a fine stop from Schwarzer.

Read more on:    fulham  |  arsenal  |  english premiership  |  soccer
NEXT ON SPORT24X

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
Live Video Streaming
  • Blitz
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @00:00
  • SS1
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @01:00
  • SS2
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @02:00
  • SS3
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @03:00
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Fixtures
08 August 2015
Stoke City v Liverpool, Britannia Stadium 16:00
Norwich City v Crystal Palace, Carrow Road 16:00
Arsenal v West Ham United, Emirates Stadium 16:00
Bournemouth v Aston Villa, Goldsands Stadium 16:00
Everton v Watford, Goodison Park 16:00
Leicester City v Sunderland, King Power Stadium 16:00
Manchester United v Tottenham Hotspur, Old Trafford 16:00
Newcastle United v Southampton, St. James' Park 16:00
Chelsea v Swansea City, Stamford Bridge 16:00
West Bromwich Albion v Manchester City, The Hawthorns 16:00
15 August 2015
Liverpool v Bournemouth, Anfield 16:00
West Ham United v Leicester City, Boleyn Ground 16:00
Manchester City v Chelsea, Etihad Stadium 16:00
Swansea City v Newcastle United, Liberty Stadium 16:00
Crystal Palace v Arsenal, Selhurst Park 16:00
Southampton v Everton, St. Mary's Stadium 16:00
Sunderland v Norwich City, Stadium of Light 16:00
Watford v West Bromwich Albion, Vicarage Road 16:00
Aston Villa v Manchester United, Villa Park 16:00
Tottenham Hotspur v Stoke City, White Hart Lane 16:00
22 August 2015
West Ham United v Bournemouth, Boleyn Ground 16:00
Norwich City v Stoke City, Carrow Road 16:00
Arsenal v Liverpool, Emirates Stadium 16:00
Everton v Manchester City, Goodison Park 16:00
Leicester City v Tottenham Hotspur, King Power Stadium 16:00
Manchester United v Newcastle United, Old Trafford 16:00
Crystal Palace v Aston Villa, Selhurst Park 16:00
Sunderland v Swansea City, Stadium of Light 16:00
West Bromwich Albion v Chelsea, The Hawthorns 16:00
Watford v Southampton, Vicarage Road 16:00
Logs
Team P W PTS
Vote

With the season all but done, are you happy with your side's performance?

 
 
/Sport
Men
Women
Love 2 Meet
Featured

Got something you'd like to get off your chest? Got a burning desire to air an opinion? If so, be sure to sign-up on Sport24's FORUM!

Latest blogs
 

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.