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West Bromwich Albion
West Ham United
February 11, 2012
• 10:00 AM
• Craven Cottage, London
Referee: C. Foy
• Attendance: 23555
P. Pogrebnyak 16'
T. Sørensen 27' (own goal)
R. Shawcross 78'
FULL TIME- That's it, Stoke leave Craven Cottage empty handed, and in fairness probably didn't deserve it, Fulham the better team as they run out 2-1 victors
90' + 4'
Dempsey rounds Schwarzer and is left with an open goal but can't wrap up the game as his shot comes back off the post!
90' + 3'
Just two more minutes to go, can Tony Pulis' men fashion themselves one last chance to salvage a draw?
90' + 2'
The ball pinned in the Stoke half at the moment, not where the away side want it to be
Free kick to Fulham in the midst of a Ryan Shotton long throw, you can hear the relief around Craven Cottage as the pressure is eased, followed by a gasp of air as the fourth official reveals 5 minutes of added time!
Dempsey almost wraps up the points for Fulham, Riise punts a long, hopeless ball forward but Shawcross and Upson make a mess of it and let Dempsey through on goal but Sorensen does well to smother the ball at the American's feet
Jermaine Pennant whips a delicious ball into the middle which skims off a couple of heads before bouncing harmlessly wide for a goal kick, that could have gone anywhere
The Fulham defence is holding firm at the moment but they are coming under increasing pressure from Stoke
In the reverse fixture between these two sides 2 late Stoke goals nicked all three points for Tony Pulis' men, they've probably got around 10 minutes to do the same again!
It's Fulham who are on the offensive now, Simon Davies looks to curl his effort into the far post but Ryan Shawcross gets his head in the way to concede a corner
Matthew Upson is down in need of some attention, but Stoke certainly seem to have the wind in their sails following that goal, Fulham are in for a difficult final ten minutes
Yellow Card Brede Hangeland
Assist Jermaine Pennant
Goal Ryan Shawcross
GOAL! Stoke have halved the deficit from the resulting corner. Ryan Shawcross gambles in front of his marker, Clint Dempsey, and flicks his header over the advancing Mark Schwarzer, game on!
For the first time in the game Danny Murphy is caught in possession, Ricard Fuller drives at the Fulham back line but he is outnumbered and has to settle for a corner
Stoke have offered little in the way of an attacking threat this game, they have looked a little more threatening in the second half, but Mark Schwarzer has been worked nowhere near as much as Tony Pulis would have liked
Should Mark Schwarzer keep his clean sheet in tact, he will move up to third in the list of goalkeepers with Premier League clean sheets, behind David James and David Seaman, quite an achievement from the Aussie
Pennant whips a devilish ball into the area, the ball takes a deflection off Upson's head onto the back of Hangeland but the referee doesn't spot it and awards a goal kick to the fury of the Stoke players
The game has yet to really get going this second half, neither side has worked the opposing 'keeper
Andy Wilkinson is replaced by Ryan Shotton, Pulis looking to get as many big men on the pitch as possible and really load the penalty box for set pieces
Kenwyne Jones is replaced by Ricardo Fuller, Jones has had little effect on the game today but hasn't really been given the service from the wide areas
The corner comes to nothing as Schwarzer clears
Etherington wins a corner for Stoke, the home side are just beginning to drop a little deeper since the substitution of Pogrebnyak
Pogrebnyak is indeed substituted, the Russian receives a standing ovation from the adoring home fans, he really has given everything today, Simon Davies his replacement
Pogrebnyak reenters the field but he's moving rather gingerly, wouldn't have though he will last the full 90 minutes
Pogrebnyak takes a tumble following a collision with Shawcross, Martin Jol may be looking to make a change, the Russian has put in quite a shift so far, no real out and out strikers on the Fulham bench, though
Another great opportunity for Crouch, the big man peels off to the back post where the ball finds its way through to him, but his control lets him down and the ball bounces harmlessly for a goal kick, he knows he's better than that
Stoke have adopted a much more direct approach to the second half, no more playing through the midfield, they're instead just opting for a route 1 approach up to Jones and Crouch
Early opportunity for Peter Crouch, strike partner Jones does well to win the flick-on but the England centre forward was taken by surprise and used his hand to control the ball when in a good position 10 yards from goal
Pogrebnyak still full of running in the second half, hasn't really had the service to be able to display his talent so far this game, but did finish with style with his only chance
Fulham get the second half underway. Tony Pulis' men haven't picked up a point in any of their previous six visits to the capital, they'll need a big performance in the second half if that run is going to end
45' + 2'
HALF TIME. Chris Foy's half time whistle is greeted with a standing ovation from the home crowd, their new boy is off the mark and they are half way to a solid three points, good half from the Cottagers
45' + 1'
Two minutes off added time to be played at Craven Cottage, Fulham have been well-worth their two goal lead this half
Yellow Card Wilson Palacios
Tony Pulis will have his work cut out if his side are going to avoid a fourth straight defeat ahead of next weeks trip to League Two Crawley
Yellow Card Marc Wilson
Free-kick to Fulham on the edge of the area given away by Wilson, Danny Murphy whips it with his right foot but sees his effort slide a foot wide of the post
Jonathan Walters comes close to pulling a goal back for his side, but his glancing header doesn't quite have the accuracy and arrows wide of the post
Better service from the wide areas from Stoke as Glen Whelan whips in a teasing corner, Schwarzer does well to take charge of the situation though and punches through the crowd
Almost a calamitous bit of defending from Ryan Shawcross, as the Stoke skipper gets across to cut out a Pogrebnyak cross and almost bundles the ball into his own net, in the end it's a good piece of defending
Not even a half-chance for Etherington as he fires his left footed effort from an acute angle and Schwarzer gathers comfortably
The Stoke crossing needs to improve if they are to take anything from this game, Jones and Crouch are being starved of service, as Wilson fires yet another cross in which doesn't beat the first man
Stoke looking to get a foothold in this game after a terrible opening half hour, but the Fulham back line are standing strong
Own Goal T. Sørensen
Assist Clint Dempsey
GOAL! Fantastic strike from Clint Dempsey, the Stoke defence backs off and Dempsey unleashes a thunderbolt towards goal, the ball strikes the bar and goes in off the back of the unlucky Sorensen, 2-0
The visitors just beginning to impose themselves on this half, still not clear chances
It's all Fulham in terms of possession, but Stoke with another half-chance as Palacios picks up the ball on the edge of the area, beats one man before firing harmlessly wide
Pogrebnyak with an ugly challenge on Damien Duff right in front of the Stoke dugout, Tony Pulis is furious with the challenge which was full-blooded at best, but the goal-scorer escapes with just a talking to
Stoke nearly hit back just a minutes later, Kenwyne Jones fires over from 15 yards with Crouch behind him perhaps in a better position
Assist J. Riise
Goal Pavel Pogrebnyak
GOAL! And it's a debut goal for Pavel Pogrebnyak! It took Zamora, the man he replaced, 15 minutes to open his QPR account and the Russian has taken just a minute longer! He showed great control to collect a Riise shot, swiveled on the edge of the area before powerfully side-footing his left footed effort into the top corner, fantastic goal!
Stoke's first shot at goal, Glen Whelan collects the ball 30 yards from goal and drives a superb half volley towards the Fulham goal, Schwarzer gets his body behind the ball
The corner is cleared, only as far as Dembele though, the Belgian squares to Duff who drives a teasing ball into the box but Sorensen shows a clean pair of hands when diving bravely at Ruiz's feet
Lovely ball from Ruiz through to Pogrebnyak, the Russian is ushered wide by Upson though and wins his side the first corner of the game
Pogrebnyak shows good strength to hold up the ball on the edge of the area, the early signs are good, the Russian looks a ready-made replacement for Bobby Zamora
Wilson Palacios has clearly been deployed as the man to get tight on Danny Murphy, it has been commented that if you stop Murphy playing-you stop Fulahm playing, and Tony Pulis seems to agree with that theory.
New boy Pogrebnyak yet to really have an impact on this game, the Russian commented before the game on the hard work he would bring to the team and he's certainly proving a willing runner early on
Fulham on the offensive, Duff exchanges a neat one two with Murphy and is sent crashing to the ground, nothing doing from referee Chris Foy
Matthew Upson goes thundering into a challenge with Danny Murphy and wins the ball cleanly. Big afternoon for the England man today, there were rumours of a January move to Southampton, but he's given his chance today following the suspension of Robert Huth
Both sides setting up in a 4-4-2 formation this afternoon, Dembele partnering Murphy in the centre of midfield with Ruiz up top with Pogrebnyak
Stoke get the game underway, the Potters in their changed blue and black kit, Martin Jol's men in their traditional white
The last four meetings between these two sides have all ended 2-0, and with both teams just beginning to look anxiously over their shoulder at the drop zone, we could well be in for a tight encounter
For the visitors there is a rare start for Kenwyne Jones, meaning Jonathan Walters starts on the right of a midfield four and Cameron Jerome drops to the bench.
The big news for the home side today is the inclusion of new-boy Pavel Pogrebnyak. The Russian had been struggling to secure a work permit, but clearance has come through and he makes his Cottagers debut today.
Stoke: Sorensen; Wilson, Upson, Shawcross, Wilkinson; Whelan, Palacios, Etherington, Walters, Crouch, Jones. Subs: Begovic, Fuller, Pennant, Whitehead, Shotton, Jerome, Woodgate.
Fulham: Schwarzer, Kelly, Hughes, Hangeland; Riise; Ruiz, Murphy, Duff, Dempsey, Dembele, Pogrebnyak. Subs: Stockdale, Baird, Gecov, Etuhu, Frei, Davies, Trotta.
Hello and welcome to Goal.com’s live commentary of Fulham v Stoke. Tony Pulis’ men come into the game having recorded just a solitary victory in their previous eight Premier League games, while Martin Jol’s men will be out to prove there is life after Bobby Zamora, having picked up just a single point since their talisman’s departure.
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