English Premiership

Zamora double sinks Blackpool

2011-04-03 17:18
Bobby Zamora (Gallo Images)

London - Fulham forward Bobby Zamora plunged Blackpool further into the relegation mire as his double-strike inspired a 3-0 win at Craven Cottage on Sunday.

Zamora scored twice in the space of five minutes midway through the first half and Dickson Etuhu struck after the interval to lift Fulham into mid-table and leave Blackpool just one point and one place above the relegation zone with seven games to play.

"It's a comeback game, my first start, and I was just pleased to play and over the moon to score," Zamora said.

"I was a little bit shattered when I came off, but I'm happy with my contribution. To hold up the ball and bring in other people is good and the goals are a bonus."

Fulham chairman Mohamed Al Fayed stole the show before kick-off as he unveiled a statue of pop legend Michael Jackson outside his club's west London stadium.

Al Fayed was a friend of Jackson's and invited the "King of Pop" to watch a Fulham match in 1999, but Cottagers fans feel the statue of the deceased singer doesn't belong at their ground.

Fulham's supporters soon had other things to occupy their minds as Mark Hughes's team romped to an emphatic victory.

The Cottagers had won four of their last five home league matches and they hit the post in the 16th minute.

Carlos Salcido's left-wing cross was headed back by Zamora to Moussa Dembele, whose superb lay-off was met by Damien Duff with a powerful shot that Ghana goalkeeper Richard Kingson pushed onto a post.

However, Kingson could do nothing to prevent Zamora opening the scoring in the 23rd minute as he latched onto James Beattie's wayward backpass and ran clear before firing home.

After three substitute appearances, Zamora was enjoying his first Fulham start for seven months as the England striker continues his return from a broken leg suffered against Wolves.

The 30-year-old, who recovered to play after an illness this week, was clearly intent on making up for lost time as he netted again five minutes later.

Blackpool had won only one of their last 10 league games and their hopes of improving that dismal sequence were all but over as Zamora glanced in a header from Duff's cross.

Ian Holloway's visitors almost snatched a lifeline when Brett Ormerod beat Mark Schwarzer to Alex Baptiste's long ball, but his goal-bound header was cleared off the line by Chris Baird.

Beattie almost made amends for his part in Fulham's first goal when he surged into the penalty area and smashed a shot which clattered off a post.

However, Fulham wrapped up the victory when Nigerian midfielder Etuhu struck in the 72nd minute.

Clint Dempsey headed against a post from Danny Murphy's free-kick and the rebound was fired across goal by Brede Hangeland for Etuhu to tap into the net.

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