News24

Fulham hold Man U to draw

2010-08-22 20:15

London - Brede Hangeland salvaged a point for Fulham against Manchester United in a 2-2 draw at Craven Cottage when the defender headed a 90th minute equaliser after scoring an own goal just moments earlier.

United had only themselves to blame for dropping two points on Sunday after Nani missed an 86th minute penalty that would have given the visitors a 3-1 lead and almost certainly guaranteed victory.

Earlier Sir Alex Ferguson's team had appeared to be in complete control of the game when Paul Scholes confirmed his excellent early season form by scoring his 150th goal for United in the 12th minute.

But Simon Davies levelled for the home side in 57th minute and Hangeland managed to cancel out his own goal to ensure Mark Hughes avoided defeat in his first home game as Fulham boss.

It was a result which will leave Ferguson rueing the concession of early ground to reigning champions Chelsea, who have begun their defence of the title with successive 6-0 victories.

Wayne Rooney was missing from the United line-up having been forced to withdraw because of illness, prompting Ferguson to pair Dimitar Berbatov and Javier Hernandez up front.

And, while United missed Rooney's more direct approach, the forward duo initially linked effectively during an opening period that should have seen the visitors establish a more commanding lead.

As it was, Ferguson's side had only one goal to show for their early efforts, a typically outstanding long range effort from Scholes.

The goal came immediately after Berbatov had conjured the first real chance when he leapt acrobatically to volley from 12 yards only to see his effort tipped over by home keeper David Stockdale.

Fulham's reprieve lasted less than a minute as, from the resulting corner, Valencia picked out Berbatov with a low cross.

The Bulgarian's first touch laid the ball back into the path of Scholes and the midfielder struck first time with a low drive from 25 yards that arrowed into the bottom corner.

Fulham's response had been limited and for 25 minutes last season's thrilling journey to the Europa League final seemed a very distant memory as Hughes's side fought to establish a foothold in the game.

However, there was evidence of the threat they would pose in the second period when Dickson Etuhu forced an outstanding double save from United's former Fulham keeper Edwin van der Sar.

Etuhu played a neat one-two with Bobby Zamora before forcing his way into the box and after blocking the midfielder's first effort, van der Sar reacted superbly to tip the follow-up over the bar.

Fulham began to dominate midfield after the restart, negating the influence of Scholes and Darren Fletcher in the central areas and finding more space down either flank.

And the 57th minute equaliser came when Damien Duff tricked his way past Patrice Evra and played in Zamora whose pull back was crashed home by Davies.

An apparently comfortable victory had turned into a desperate fight to avoid defeat for Ferguson's side but they stood firm and eventually restored their lead thanks to Hangeland's error.

The Fulham defender was unable to pull his shin out of the way as Nani's corner swung into the home area and the ball dribbled agonisingly over the lead with six minutes remaining.

Two minutes later United should have made sure of the points when Duff handled, only for Nani to fire the resulting spot-kick too close to Stockdale.

The miss proved costly with Hangeland making up for his earlier mistake by heading the equaliser in the final minute of normal time.

AFP

Comments
  • REALITY - 2010-08-23 07:52

    @ Pool and Utd supporters. It's must be really depressing to see what the likes of Chelsea and Arsenal are achieving currently. Yet again, a Rooneyless Utd results in a winless Utd

  • JJ - 2010-08-23 08:51

    Johnny Evans had a really pathetic game he was completely useless to say the least.

  • RICO - 2010-08-23 09:07

    said it b4 and will say it again.....if we dont buy the season is over.....so frustrating.......

  • Observer - 2010-08-23 09:14

    Being a rugby fan I have no allegiance to any team in the EPL but I tend to enjoy these forums for their entertainment value and I do enjoy sport in general and also it is interesting to note the different styles of play between the various football teams . Liverpool , Arsenal and Manchester ( United) play a similar style of game with Arsenal arguably being the easiest on the eye whereas a team like Chelsea sort of just bludgeons the opposition into the ground - it is not pretty but it gets desired result , a victory . They do look like favourites for the title again if they can maintain this standard of play through the entire season . Unfortuneatley for Manchester United I cannot see them as favourites - they play classy football at times but they do not have the capability to finish opposition teams off - they literally almost snatched defeat from the jaws of victory against a determined Fulham side , what will happen against a Liverpool , Chelsea or Arsenal . This promises to be an enjoyable season for the neutrals ..

  • Observer - 2010-08-23 09:16

    Being a rugby fan I have no allegiance to any team in the EPL but I tend to enjoy these forums for their entertainment value and I do enjoy sport in general and also it is interesting to note the different styles of play between the various football teams . Liverpool , Arsenal and Manchester ( United) play a similar style of game with Arsenal arguably being the easiest on the eye whereas a team like Chelsea sort of just bludgeons the opposition into the ground - it is not pretty but it gets desired result , a victory . They do look like favourites for the title again if they can maintain this standard of play through the entire season . Unfortuneatley for Manchester United I cannot see them as favourites - they play classy football at times but they do not have the capability to finish opposition teams off - they literally almost snatched defeat from the jaws of victory against a determined Fulham side , what will happen against a Liverpool , Chelsea or Arsenal . This promises to be an enjoyable season for the neutrals ..

  • Lamps_8@Reality - 2010-08-23 09:22

    FFS its the second Game,Nobody has won Jack sh!t yet.Well Done Fulham!!!

  • chelseaboi!!!1 - 2010-08-23 09:27

    funny,no united fans running their mouth today....

  • Ryan - 2010-08-23 09:52

    As a United supporter it pains me to have to agree with Observer but facts are facts . Points dropped at the start of the season will come back to haunt you at the end - like last season . Glad to see Berba has upped his game but WTF was Nani doing taking a penalty when Owen and Giggs and Scholes was around ? Scholesy is playing like a man ten years younger - wish he was cos I doubt he can keep this up for an entire season . We need another top midfielder and we need two good central defenders ( don't know how long Rio will be out ) as well as a right full-back otherwise we are gonna have another season like the last one .

  • REALITY - 2010-08-23 09:52

    @ Lamps 8...R u brown nosing Utd fans these days???... Ass*ole, I said "currently"....nobody is talking about winning anything at this stage.

  • Thami, Kempton Park - 2010-08-23 10:26

    Should we start now congratulating Chelsea for winning the 2010-2011 EPL title?? of course not! The league is two weeks old, and still has 36 games to go. [Remember, last season, Man United lost their opening game to Burnley (now relegated) and yet they recovered to push Chelsea to the last day of the season... despite losing to Fulham along the way. My beloved Arsenal started the season with a 6-1 demolition of Everton, but finished the season 11 points behind the eventual champions, Chelsea]. So, count no chicks, nothing is hatched yet, and nothing will be at least for the next 30 [of the 36 remaining] games.

  • Sam - 2010-08-23 12:00

    I couldnt agree more chelseaboi

  • Kube$ - 2010-08-23 12:22

    @Lamps8- Things are so competitive that one cant say "its too early". But I will put my head on the block now, Chelsea will prob win the league, but Champs league, keep dreaming. As for my beloved Arsenal, That Wenger is making me mad, him and his masters in Economics degrees are irritating me. He aint interested in trophies , he is at some baby clinic right now looking for players to grrom and then sell to make GP. I am gonna F*&K him up.

  • Lamps_8@REALITY - 2010-08-23 13:34

    Me?Brown nose Man U fans?You must be so high on methamphetamine boy.Anybody who has ever read my comments knows how much I despise Manure.I'm just not like those fans who claim they're team are already Champions when the season has only just begun.Chelsea will have to do a lot to keep up appearances.It won't be 6 nil every week and it won't be so easy every game.Its a marathon,not a sprint so even if you think they are 'currently' on form,things can change.I'd rather just support the mighty Blues each week and hope for the best than be let down because of high expectations.This is not me trying to argue,I'm just saying

  • Man U - 2010-08-23 14:35

    @chelseaboi and sam: Most Utd supporters will be Utd supporters even if we have a few bad games! We are here pumping our mouths but what amazes me is that all of a sudden, there is an influx of Chelsea supporters! Especially displaying their imature attitudes on a Man Utd article page! Anyway, your ignorance cannot be lost overnight. Anyway, Utd is starting to have these tendencies of not finishing off games like Chelsea have been doing recently. It stuffed us up last season and if our guys do not get their act together quickly, i see it happening again this season! However, although it seems bad, we still managed to get out of Craven Cottage with a point and not empty handed! But WTF was up with Nani taking the spot kick??? Giggs normally does a fantastic job!

  • A(N)ON - 2010-08-24 09:19

    Thats 2 points lost - well the season has just started and Man U are notoriously bad starters. Unlike Arsenal who come out of the stalls sprinting and lose it towards the middle - remember last season 6-1 against Everton and barely managing 3rd place! The games have begun lets see who has the resolute to continue the winning ways. @ Reality and Kube - look at the log. Arsenal still in joint second place with United and a host of others. 6-0 against a 10-man recently promoted side does not make your team a championship winning one. Remember the last gasp equaliser against a depleted LFC side - you guys still need to pull of the results against the top 3 teams first before claiming a chance at the trophy.

  • Robbo - 2010-08-24 09:49

    Some of you guys crack me up with your comments , heh heh . Of course Chelsea are looking good at the moment but still 36 games to go and they still have to play the better teams . United will come good , they always do - we have a winning mentality - like they say , Form is temporary but Class is permanent and Fergie is too experienced and United are too classy a team to start panicking now . Chelsea have scored lots of goals but , they are very very clinical and not at all attractive to watch , they just physically overwhelm the opposition not unlike a rugby match . Remember Rooney still has to find his form and then United will be back to their best . I agree with Ryan - we need reinforcements in midfield and in defence but last year we went through most of the season without a recognised defence and still ran Chelsea all the way .

  • AL @ REALITY - 2010-08-24 14:10

    Please tell us who you support??

  • pages:
  • 1
Report Comment