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West Ham United
March 10, 2012
• 10:00 AM
• Villa Park, Birmingham
Referee: J. Moss
• Attendance: 32372
A. Weimann 90'+
Full time at Villa Park! Andreas Weimann's late winner for Aston VIlla over Fulham is the perfect end to the match for Villa fans who vociferously cheered on their side as they had much more of the game going forward, but lacked creativity. Their pressing from the first half rarely allowed space for the likes of Danny Murphy and Moussa Dembele to create and the impressive energy in attack shown by Stephen Ireland and Mark Albrighton meant they only needed a bit of luck to fall their way for the winner.
90' + 3'
Goal Andreas Weimann
Andreas Weimann scores late winner for Villa. Gary Gardner cut across from the right edge of the box to fire a scorching effort straight at Schwarzer, but the keeper is unable to hold on to the effort and the substitute striker is quick to react, heading into Schwarzer but being on hand to scramble in the rebound.
Bryan Ruiz takes a corner for Fulham from the right side, but his inswing effort is dealt with by the home side.
Albrighton swings in a low cross from the left wing that makes its way to Cuellar, who fires wide of the right post after rushing his effort.
The tempo has slowed again with each side preferring not to commit to attacks in search of a late winning goal.
Fulham retain the ball successfully and take some of the fizz out of the game, seemingly in search of a draw. Dempsey has other ideas and drives from the heart of midfield to fire an unrealistic shot well wide.
Tension is rising at Villa Park, with the home fans willing McLeish's side to score but the Fulham defence remaining resolute.
Collins does well to tackle Dembele as the forward runs towards the centre of the box. Albrighton wids a corner from the resulting break and Villa pass the ball back before moving the ball forward again.
Riise hits a trademark shot wide of the right post from the left edge of the box.
Ireland cuts inside to drag Stephen Kelly away from the overlapping Stephen Warnock. The left back's cross is accurately whipped in across the six yard box but no one is able to connect.
Bryan Ruiz attempts an ambitious through ball to Dempsey but it is intercepted by James Collins.
Yellow Card Chris Herd
Chris Herd is booked for a late challenge on Mahamadou Diarra.
Fulham struggle to clear a Villa freekick but succeed eventually with the goal intact.
Forward Andreas Weimann arrives in place of attacker Charles N'Zogbia to bring fresh legs up front.
Duff wins a corner on the left hand side and takes it short to Dembele. The Cottagers retain possession around the Villa box, eventually finding Duff running into the left side of the box. The Irish winger has sparkled since the start of the second half and forced a good save from Given as the keeper tipped his shot over the bar.
Bryan Ruiz comes on for Andy Johnson in a like for like change.
Yellow Card Stilian Petrov
Petrov receives a yellow card after scything down Dembele as he marched down the left wing after his side won possession.
A couple of breaks in play have slowed the tempo right down after a frantic few minutes. Villa are still showing more going forward.
Albrighton shoots narrowly wide over the top right corner from the edge of the box from Hutton's lay off. The home side have revived after coming under pressure at the start of the second half.
The Cottagers have impressed at the start of the second half building, using the ball much better in building attacks, but in the last couple of minutes Villa rode a wave of crowd support to pour forward and press, winning possession in the Fulham half. Most notable was Ireland's precise ball over the top of the defence which Hangeland needed to be in position to clear.
Schwarzer catches a cross at the near post with authority and rolls the ball out to Diarra who quickly moves the ball forward.
Duff again stretches the Villa defence with an inswinging cross from the left wing headed on for a corner by the home defence.
Duff, having not seen much of the ball in the first half, threatens again and shoots from the left edge of the box. The ball takes a deflection off Carlos Cuellar and goes over the bar. But Fulham looking much brighter after the break.
Damien Duff receives the ball on the right of the box, jinks past his marker and puts a precise ball tantalisingly across the six yard box which only just evades Dempsey at the near post.
Dembele threatens the Villa defence but when the move breaks down McLeish's side counter quickly with Agbonlahor down the right. Senderos sprints across to slide the ball away from the striker.
Steven Ireland combines well on the right with Mark Albrighton to get a cross in which proves awkward for Schwarzer, with his momentum almost carrying the ball over the line.
Fulham get the second half underway having brought on former Real Madrid midfielder Mahamadou Diarra in place of Danny Murphy, who can't have enjoyed his first half, giving the ball away on multiple occasions.
Half Time at Villa Park and it's 0-0. Aston Villa started at a high tempo and pressed their opponents in their own half, driving the visitors back. The home side created a couple of opportunites for shots and forced errors from Fulham in midfield, with Agbonlahor forcing Schwarzer into a decent save on one occasion after Danny Murphy gave the ball away. Towards the end of the half however Fulham grew into the game and were able to launch some attacks. Much of the second half will depend on whether Villa can maintain the stamina to keep their pressing up and prevent holes opening up in their defence that the Cottagers can exploit.
Dembele forces the defence back with one of his trademark runs through midfield, and James Collins fouls Pogrebnyak on the edge of the box. It's passed wide of the wall to Andy Johnson on the left of the box, who flashes the ball across the six yard box but no one is able to connect.
Fulham are starting to have more possession towards the end of the half and Villa are getting more men behind the ball in response.
Senderos shows good anticipation to advance from defence and make two interceptions in quick succession, and when VIlla's move breaks down the Cottagers are quick to move the ball up to Dempsey who finds Pogrebnyak. The ball is worked to Duff who tries to work a shooting position but is unable to get a shot off.
Petrov gets in a crunching tackle on Murphy to win the ball and launch another attack. Villa are not allowuing their opponents time in their own half and the Cottagers have so far been unable to build attacks of their own.
Hutton is required to react quickly after Dembele looks to find Andy Johnson on the left edge of the box,
Villa win the ball in Fulham's half again after pressing Murphy, and release Irelend in the Fulham box, but he moved too early and is called offside.
The game has calmed down slightly after Vuilla opened at a fast pace, but Fulham still have not been able to record a sustained spell of possession.
Clint Dempsey tries to get Damien Duff in behind the Villa down the right flank but the pass is overhit.
Andy Johnson receives the ball on the left from Clint Dempsey and cuts inside Hutton to fire a low shot which is saved by Given at the near post.
Danny Murphy is forced to go off to change his shirt and receive treatment after being bloodied by an aerial challenge with Stephen Ireland. Villa's James Collins goes forward as ViIla attack but Fulham stay solid until Murphy returns.
Fulham work their best move so far after winning the ball from Petrov who unsuccessfully appeals for a freekick. Andy Johnson breaks down the left flank after an exchange of passes betwen Moussa Dembele and Clin Dempsey, but is dispossessed.
Petrov blasts a low shot wide of the left post after receiving a layoff from a freekick outside the box.
Fulham get possession back after weathering a tough few minutes at the hands of their opponents. But when Villa regain the ball after recovering a long ball they swiftly move the ball to the right flank and Albrighton gets an early cross into the box but it drifts past his teammates.
The Cottagers' Danny Murphy gives the ball away again in his own half and isalmost punished for it this time. Schwarzer is required to make a smart save to prevent Agbonlahor giving Villa a lead.
Albrighton gets away down the right hand side and his cross is puit out for a corner by Philippe Senderos. Schwarzer punches the ball out but it finds its way back to Villa defender James Collins who blasts the ball out for a goal kick from the right edge of the box.
Pogrebnyak is beaten to a header by Villa and N'Zogbia breaks past Stephen Kelly on the left. Danny Murphy covers to put it out for a corner.
Danny Murphy gives the ball away to N'Zogbia, who threats the ball to Gabriel Agbonlahor whose cross is headed towards goal by Albrighton. Schwarzer saves comfortably but conceding that opportunity was needless for Jol's Fulham.
The home side have controlled possession for most of the first 10 minutes, and have made a couple of efforts so far at Fulham's Mark Schwarzer, without threatening to score just yet.
James Collins slides in to win the ball from Pavel Pogrebnyak on the left wing and Villa move the ball forward quickly. The move ends when Stephen Warnock's cross is intercepted.
Albrighton runs at John Arner Riise on the right wing before pulling the ball back to N'Zogbia on the edge of the box. The Frenchman's shot is wide to the left of the goal.
Villa have retained possesion in the early stages of the game, but Stiliyan Petrov changes tack with a run through the centre of midfield before he finds Mark Albrighton on the right wing. His cross wins a corner for the home side from which Stiliyan Petrov's shot is saved by Mark Schwarzer.
Stephen Ireland wins a corner for VIlla and retain possession after it is cleared, before Charles N'Zogbia's right wing cross flies over the cross bar.
And we're off at Villa Park!
Pogrebnyak gets a stong challenge in early on Chris Herd for a Villa freekick on the halfway line.
Fulham: Schwarzer; Kelly, Senderos, Hangeland, Riise; Murphy, Dempsey; Duff, Dembele, Johnson; Pogrebnyak. Substitutes: Stockdale, Baird, Hughes, Diarra, Etuhu, Davies, Sa.
Aston Villa: Given; Hutton, Collins, Cuellar, Warnock; Petrov, Herd; Albrighton, Ireland, N'Zogbia; Agbonlahor. Substitutes: Guzan, Lichaj, Baker, Bannan, Gardner, Heskey, Weimann.
Hello and welcome to Goal.com's live commentary of Aston Villa v Fulham at Villa Park. I'm @arthurvirgo and encourage you all to get involved in the comments section below or on Twitter @GoalUK.
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