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21 October 2013
• Selhurst Park, London
Referee: L. Mason
• Attendance: 24881
A. Mariappa 7'
P. Kasami 19'
S. Sidwell 45'
D. Berbatov 50'
P. Senderos 55'
That's all from our LIVE coverage of events at Selhurst Park this evening. There's plenty of Champions League action to keep you entertained this week before the Premier League returns at the weekend. For now, though, it's goodbye!
Ian Holloway will have plenty of positives from the first half, but not so many from the second. Two goals from corners in five minutes completely killed the game. They have a lot of work to do to climb up the table.
Pajtim Kasami and Steve Sidwell will take the plaudits for two absolutely brilliant goals tonight, but special mention should be given to Dimitar Berbatov, who put in a real shift and worked hard in all areas of the pitch. He was instrumental in almost every Fulham attack.
That result sends Fulham up to 14th in the Premier League on 10 points, while Crystal Palace stay 19th with just three points from their first eight fixtures.
That's FULL TIME and it's finished 4-1 to Fulham on a fantastic night for Martin Jol's men. Two wonder strikes in the first half appeared to completely demoralise Crystal Palace, who looked thoroughly dejected in the second half.
90' + 3'
Speroni launches the ball into the Fulham half and Senderos heads forward, before Sidwell is fouled by Chamakh. It's very quiet inside Selhurst Park, and is emptying rapidly.
90' + 2'
O'Keefe plays the ball into Phillips and the striker flicks it first time into the box for Moxey to chase, but Stekelenburg is out quickly to gather the ball.
Ward breaks down the right-hand side but Sidwell tracks back well to slide in and put the ball out of play. Meanwhile, Fulham are readying a change with Hugo Rodallega replacing Berbatov as we enter three minutes of stoppage time.
Good effort! Bolasie plays it to Moxey in midfield, and the defender tries an effort from all of 35 yards. It's straight at Stekelenburg but wobbles in the air and the goalkeeper takes no chances, parrying it away with two hands.
Good save! Parker steals the ball in midfield and sets a quick break going through Berbatov. The Bulgarian plays wide to Kasami, who tries a cheeky effort with the outside of his left foot from 20 yards, forcing a strong save from Speroni.
Palace try to press the Fulham defence high up as they did in the first half, but Moxey is penalised for a foul in the visitors' penalty area. The home fans aren't happy, but then they haven't had much to cheers tonight.
Kasami plays the ball down the flank for Richardson, but Jedinak covers well to clear before Kasami takes out Ward by the touchline.
The chance is wasted, though, as Thomas manages to get it over the wall, but also well over the bar.
Yellow Card Kieran Richardson
Chamakh goes down on the edge of the box and Palace have a good chance to get one back with a free kick 20 yards out...
Palace press forward in numbers and Phillips is taken out but play goes on. IT's eventually worked back to Puncheon who forces a low stop from Stekelenburg with a bobbling 25-yard effort.
Berbatov collects the ball and holds it with his usual calm swagger before O'Keefe comes in and hacks at him from behind, prompting the referee's whistle.
Fulham have possession but that's the end of the night for Bent. Despite his side being 4-1 up, it's been a very disappointing performance from the striker.
Chance for Palace as Ward catches Richardson out and steals the ball on the edge of the box, but his left-footed effort from 20 yards flies well over.
Palace try to get an attack moving, and eventually Stekelenburg is forced into action as he pushes Thomas' inswinging cross behind for a corner.
Jedinak cuts a forlorn figure in the middle as a pass goes straight out of play for a throw. That pretty much sums up the hosts' evening.
Chance for Palace as Thomas picks it up on the left and moves into the box before looking for Phillips, but it's blocked by Riether and goes behind. The substitute may have done better trying to shoot, there.
Sidwell spreads an excellent ball wide for Riether. Jedinak then blocks another pass in the middle but it goes straight back to the visitors before Berbatov is caught offside.
Fulham have gone back to passing it around again, almost like they're on the training ground. It's looking very comfortable right now; who would have thought that at the break?
Can 40-year-old striker Kevin Phillips inspire a very unlikely comeback? He's on for the hosts.
Senderos clears a cross by Bolasie and Berbatov sets a break going with a fine pass to Bent. The ball comes to Kasami on the left, and he looks for Bent with a decent early cross, but Palace clear it away.
Kasami drives forward with a dangerous-looking run before playing it out to Berbatov on the left. The forward cuts inside before passing back to Senderos. The visitors are in no rush to get it forward now.
Palace have the ball in the net...but it's offside. The hosts are furious as Thomas is brought down by Richardson on the edge of the box but the referee plays on. Gayle puts it past Stekelenburg at the second attempt but the flag goes up.
Look away, Palace fans. Senderos' goal was only his second for Fulham in 48 appearances, while this is the first time in nine years that the Cottagers have scored four away from home.
Fulham are stroking it around the middle, now, prompting the "ole" chants from the visiting fans. Parker then tries to slide a pass through for Bent to chase, but it just has too much on it and Speroni collects.
Ruiz finds some space down the right-hand side and plays it on to Sidwell, who takes on two men by the corner flag before winning a throw off Moxey.
Speroni launches the ball forward and Bolasie does well to head across to Ward, who manages to win a throw for the Eagles.
There's still plenty of time left in this, but you just can't see Palace scoring enough. Meanwhile, Ward gives it straight to Parker in midfield and Fulham have the ball.
This is turning into a nightmare for Crystal Palace. They've just not turned up for the second half and this game has surely escaped them, now.
Assist Bryan Ruiz
Goal Philippe Senderos
SENDEROS SCORES!! IT'S FOUR!! And we may have had use of the goal-line decision system, here. The defender meets Ruiz's corner at the far post and volleys down brilliantly from four yards out. The ball slides under Speroni's leg but it's over the line before he can clear it out.
Great clearance by Mariappa! The Palace scorer has denied a certain goal as the ball is fired in low from the left, but he sends it behind for a corner with Bent ready to tap in from close range.
Another long ball comes forward but Richardson comfortably sees it behind for a goal kick to Fulham. Meanwhile, Marouane Chamakh appears to be getting ready to come on for the hosts.
Palace have possession back and knock it around the defence before finally launching it forward, but Gayle can't trouble Amorebieta and the substitute wins the ball back for Fulham.
Assist Bryan Ruiz
Goal D. Berbatov
BERBATOV SCORES!! FULHAM GO 3-1 UP!! Moments after Bent should have scored, Berbatov gets ahead of his man in the box to head the corner across goal and into the far corner from eight yards. Another huge blow for the hosts.
SO CLOSE!! How is it not 3-1? Speroni hammers a clearance straight at Berbatov and Bent plays it into his strike partner before receiving it back straight away. He blasts a shot at goal but Speroni manages to divert it behind.
Bolasie whips in a dangerous cross which evades Gayle, but Thomas is there to fire it in from the other side. Bolasie is the man on the end this time, but it's diverted behind for a corner which Fulham clear.
Fulham start the second half as Fernando Amorebieta replaces Hangeland for the visitors, while Holloway throws on Jerome Thomas for Campana.
Almost time to get back underway at Selhurst Park. Can Crystal Palace turn what's been a good performance into a good result?
Sky Sports have just thrown a fascinating stat at us: it's been four-and-a-half years since Fulham have won at home having conceded the first goal. This one's far from over yet, though...
His counterpart, however, will be delighted with the scoreline. The Cottagers will have to improve to hold the lead, though, with Palace pressing very hard. With these sides' defences both shaky this season, who would bet against more goals after the break?
Ian Holloway must be really bemoaning his luck right now. His side did very well to keep Bent and Berbatov quiet, then they concede those two.
It's HALF TIME at Selhurst Park and Fulham take a 2-1 lead into the dressing room after coming from behind. Mariappa put Palace into a deserved lead but two wonder goals from Kasami and Sidwell have the visitors in front.
45' + 1'
Palace are completely stunned as we enter two minutes' added time. They've played well but are behind to two utterly incredible goals.
Goal Steve Sidwell
SIDWELL SCORES!! AND IT'S ANOTHER STUNNER!! Ruiz takes the free kick and it hits the wall but it loops towards Sidwell on the edge of the box, and the midfielder shows perfect technique to blast a volley into the top corner. Another absolute screamer!
Richardson and Berbatov exchange passes before O'Keefe challenges well, prompting a succession of strong (but fair) tackles from either side. Moments later, though, Fulham win a free kick 25 yards out toward the right of the box...
Moxey looks for Gayle at the far post with a high inswinging cross, but Stekelenburg is able to collect it comfortably ahead of the Palace forward.
Stekelenburg clears forward but Jedinak brings it down superbly in the centre circle before playing it forward. Bolasie then tries to fire it into the box but it hits a defender, prompting fervent handball claims, but the referee isn't interested.
It would appear all is well again in the executive boxes. They're all back in their place after that brief interlude for a fire alarm.
Puncheon has it in midfield and exchanges possession with Campana on the left before finding Moxey. The full-back gives it back to Puncheon, who wastes a good position with a poor cross that goes behind.
It's just quietened down inside Selhurst Park, echoing the state of play on the pitch. Stekelenburg launches a goal kick forward but soon gets it straight back as Palace clear their lines.
Bolasie has been excellent tonight, and he's stealing the limelight at the moment, producing a lovely jinking run and spreading the ball wide before getting it back on the left and showing some quick footwork to get past Riether.
Puncheon finds Bolasie with a superb ball out to the left wing, and he cuts inside before firing a powerful shot at goal, but it's straight at Stekelenburg.
Kasami has the ball out wide near halfway, and lifts an excellent diagonal ball into the box. Ruiz sprints in to try and reach it but the bounce just evades him and Palace have the ball back.
Senderos lifts the ball forward to Berbatov down the right-hand side, and the striker does well to control it and eventually win a throw for Fulham under pressure from Moxey.
Bent drops short to receive the ball but Jedinak is there to challenge the striker and win possession back for the hosts. Meanwhile, there's a fire alarm going off in the executive boxes, prompting an evacuation!
Campana pushes down the right and slides the ball into Gayle, who is challenged hard but manages to get it back out wide before Richardson has to clear out for a throw.
Ward is put under strong pressure by Kasami after some sloppy play by Campana, but the Palace defender manages to win a free kick.
Puncheon clearly wants a go at a stunning strike of his own as he shoots from well wide, but it completely misses the target and Fulham have a goal kick.
Fulham press forward again and it comes to Kasami who, unsurprisingly, fancies his chances with another shot, but Ward blocks his effort this time.
Fulham have a corner and Berbatov wins the header. It comes off Jedinak and the Cottagers claim handball but it hit the Palace midfielder at such close range, and the referee gives nothing.
Mariappa had come across to cover and looked to have forced Kasami too wide, but there was nothing he or Speroni could do about that!
Assist Sascha Riether
Goal Pajtim Kasami
KASAMI SCORES!! IT'S LEVEL!! And what a goal that is!! Riether plays it over the top on the right, and Kasami knocks it on with his chest before hammering a stunning volley across goal and into the top corner. Absolutely breathtaking!
Sidwell plays the ball wide to Ruiz, who looks for Bent with a first-time pass inside, but Delaney reads it superbly and slides in to clear the ball away.
Puncheon tries to chase down a long clearance, but can't get to it before it goes out for a throw to the visitors, who now have a chance to calm things down and settle back into some possession.
Wide! Jedinak catches Sidwell out in midfield and sets O'Keefe away. The midfielder drives forward before firing a low shot from 25 yards which rolls wide of Stekelenburg's post.
Bolasie puts Sidwell under real pressure and ends up winning a throw near the corner flag. Ward takes it and eventually regains possession, but his cross goes behind for a goal kick.
Bent goes in search of a hopeful high ball forward but can't get on the end of it. He hasn't even had a touch yet.
Hangeland tries to play the ball out of defence but gets into trouble, and Richardson ends up being dispossessed by Bolasie out wide. Fulham win it back, but Hangeland's clearance goes out.
Selhurst Park is rocking right now. It's a proper old-fashioned ground and a tricky place to visit. Fulham will be liking it even less now.
Holloway will be delighted with that start. It's a nightmare for Jol, though, who is really feeling the pressure. Palace have their tails up and Gayle nearly gets in behind the defence, but runs it too far and Stekelenburg collects.
Fulham get straight up the other end and win a corner, which Berbatov flicks towards goal, but Hangeland fouls Speroni and the hosts have a free kick.
Goal Adrian Mariappa
MARIAPPA SCORES!! PALACE ARE IN FRONT!! Fulham clear the initial corner but it comes back out wide and Puncheon's cross is deflected high off Berbatov, and Mariappa is there to get above Hangeland and head into the far corner. What a start!
Campana lines up the set piece but Hangeland jumps high in the wall to divert the ball well over the bar for a corner to Palace.
The home fans have their first reason to get excited as Bolasie produces a good run before cutting inside. Before he can get a shot away, though, Sidwell brings him down, and Palace have a free kick 25 yards out...
Berbatov drops deep to collect the ball before sending it back to Senderos. The Bulgaria international is playing well behind Bent by the looks of it.
Riether lifts a high ball forward for Berbatov, but Delaney reads it well and heads it out for a throw. Fulham are still enjoying more of the possession, despite that Gayle effort.
Fulham are first to settle into some possession but it's Maarten Stekelenburg who has the first save to make. Gayle gets the ball in space and drives forward before shooting from the right-hand side of the area, forcing a simple low stop for the Cottagers goalkeeper.
We're underway at Selhurst Park as the hosts get the game started.
Captain Mile Jedinak leads the handshake ahead of kick-off. He's been a massive player for Palace this season, and you suspect he'll need to be on top form to help guide his side to what would be a vital win tonight.
Palace striking legends Mark Bright and Ian Wright are the guests of honour at Selhurst Park tonight. How Holloway could do with an attack like that! It's almost down to business now, though, as the teams march out of the tunnel.
Darren Bent scored two of those three substitute goals, most recently notching the winner against Stoke in his 250th Premier League appearance. Since 2008-09, the striker has netted 67 times; only Robin van Persie, Wayne Rooney and Frank Lampard have been more prolific in the same amount of time.
Jol's men, however, have scored just five league goals all season. Interestingly, three of those have come from substitutes; more than any other side in the English top flight.
The opening goal could prove key tonight. The Eagles have lost all five games this season in which they've conceded the first strike.
For Fulham, Martin Jol makes four changes from the win over Stoke. Maarten Stekelenburg returns to the goal after going off injured on the opening day of the season, while Scott Parker makes a welcome return from a calf injury. Meanwhile, there are also places in the XI for Kieran Richardson and Darren Bent.
So Dwight Gayle, who turned 23 yesterday, comes into the Crystal Palace starting line-up, while Yannick Bolasie and Jose Campana also earn starts as Jimmy Kebe, Marouane Chamakh and Jerome Thomas all drop to the bench.
FULHAM: Stekelenburg; Riether, Senderos, Hangeland, Richardson; Kasami, Parker, Sidwell, Ruiz; Berbatov, Bent. // Subs: Stockdale, Amorebieta, Zverotic, Karagounis, Boateng, Duff, Rodallega.
CRYSTAL PALACE: Speroni; Ward, Mariappa, Delaney, Moxey; O'Keefe, Jedinak; Campana, Puncheon, Bolasie; Gayle. // Subs: Price, Gabbidon, Dikgacoi, Kebe, Thomas, Phillips, Chamakh.
The team news is in, so let's get straight down to business and bring you the line-ups, starting with the hosts...
Hello and welcome to LIVE coverage of the Premier League clash between Crystal Palace and Fulham. It's the battle of the strugglers this evening as 19th hosts 17th, but Fulham bagged their first league win since August when they beat Stoke just before the international break. Can Ian Holloway's Palace avoid making it five defeats on the spin?
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