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Page last updated at 17:33 GMT, Saturday, 27 November 2010

Fulham   1 - 1   Birmingham

Clint Dempsey
Clint Dempsey heads home Fulham's equaliser

By Les Roopanarine

Clint Dempsey salvaged a point for Fulham and denied Birmingham a first Premier League away win since March.

With 20 minutes gone, Alexander Hleb capped a marauding run through the Fulham defence with a well-timed ball to Sebastian Larsson, who swept home.

Fulham left the field at half-time to a chorus of boos, but striker Dempsey nodded them level just after the break from Zoltan Gera's looping header.

Scott Dann later shuddered the bar for the visitors.

Given that Birmingham have not won on their travels for eight months, while Fulham are without a victory of any kind since late October, it was hardly the most unpredictable of results.

Yet neither the background to the contest, nor the fact that this was Fulham's ninth league draw of the season and Birmingham's eighth, could disguise the fact that the comeback at one stage seemed beyond the home side.

Fulham character pleases Hughes

At half-time, having watched his side outclass the Cottagers for 45 minutes, Birmingham manager Alex McLeish could have been forgiven for anticipating a rare away victory to mark his third anniversary in charge.

He might even have contemplated raising a glass to Hleb, who offered spectacular evidence of his Arsenal and Barcelona pedigree in the build-up to the visitors' opener.

Racing along the inside left channel, the Belarus international, on a season-long loan from the Nou Camp, drove into the box before wrong-footing the backpedalling Carlos Salcido to find Larsson with a slide-rule pass.

The Sweden international made no mistake, his low shot following an unerring course across Ben Foster and into the far corner.

606: DEBATE
Brummerdickens

Salcido was replaced by John Paintsil not long afterwards, but Fulham's problems ranged beyond the right-back position.

Deprived of the services of a trio of injured strikers after Andrew Johnson joined Bobby Zamora and Moussa Dembele on the sidelines, the hosts rarely troubled the Birmingham rearguard in the first half.

Larsson had been obliged to clear an early Aaron Hughes effort off the line, but Fulham were otherwise poor and the home support made their displeasure plain at the break, greeting referee Howard Webb's whistle with a chorus of derision.

Clearly the message hit home, for Fulham emerged with a new sense of urgency and purpose, and were rewarded with an equaliser inside seven minutes. Gera nodded a Simon Davies corner back across goal, and Dempsey was on hand to head home at the near post.

McLeish disputes corner leading to Fulham goal

It was a rare moment of incisiveness from Fulham, who squandered a host of set-piece opportunities, but it was sufficient to reignite the belief of both supporters and players.

Yet for all Fulham's second-half pressure - Kamara had an effort superbly blocked by Dann, one of several occasions on which he was thwarted by Birmingham's back four, while substitute Eddie Johnson brushed the side netting - it was the visitors who came closest to breaking the deadlock.

Larsson was once again in the thick of things, swinging a corner into the danger area from where Dann, eluding his marker, sent a powerful header crashing against the bar.

It was one of few promising second-half moments for Birmingham, but not even the departure of Hleb, who was carried off on a stretcher after succumbing to a hamstring problem, could lift Fulham sufficiently to draw a line under what is now a five-game winless streak.

Live text and stats

 

Saturday, 27 November 2010

Barclays Premier League

Home Team Score Away Team Time
Fulham 1-1 Birmingham FT
(HT 0-1)
  • Dempsey 53
  • Larsson 20

Fulham

Substitutes

Birmingham

Substitutes

Ref: H WebbAtt: 24,391
FULHAM
BIRMINGHAM

Possession

  • Fulham 49%
  • Birmingham 51%

Attempts on target

  • Fulham 8
  • Birmingham 3

Attempts off target

  • Fulham 4
  • Birmingham 4

Corners

  • Fulham 8
  • Birmingham 4

Fouls

  • Fulham 11
  • Birmingham 9
  • Final Result
  • Full Time
  • 90:00+3:51 The final whistle goes and the game is over.
  • 90:00+3:21 Foul by Clinton Dempsey on Stephen Carr, free kick awarded. Free kick taken by Ben Foster.
  • 90:00+3:21 Booking Booking for Clinton Dempsey for unsporting behaviour.
  • 90:00+2:10 Diomansy Kamara is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Ben Foster restarts play with the free kick.
  • 88:00 Danny Murphy has an effort at goal from outside the box which goes wide left of the target.
  • 87:32 Nikola Zigic is caught offside. Mark Schwarzer takes the indirect free kick.
  • 87:05 Foul by Eddie Johnson on Roger Johnson, free kick awarded. Barry Ferguson takes the direct free kick.
  • 85:38 Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Sebastian Larsson from the right by-line, Aaron Hughes manages to make a clearance.
  • 84:46 Substitution Keith Fahey goes off and David Murphy comes on.
  • 82:38 Corner taken by Danny Murphy from the right by-line.
  • 82:11 Eddie Johnson takes a shot. Save by Ben Foster.
  • 80:50 Diomansy Kamara takes a shot. Save made by Ben Foster.
  • 78:54 Eddie Johnson is caught offside. Ben Foster restarts play with the free kick.
  • 76:44 Free kick awarded for a foul by Roger Johnson on Diomansy Kamara. Direct free kick taken by Danny Murphy.
  • 74:51 Nikola Zigic takes a shot. Comfortable save by Mark Schwarzer.
  • 73:42 Outswinging corner taken by Sebastian Larsson from the right by-line, Scott Dann takes a shot.
  • 72:43 Substitution Simon Davies goes off and Eddie Johnson comes on.
  • 72:06 Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Simon Davies from the right by-line.
  • 71:48 Clinton Dempsey takes a shot. Save by Ben Foster.
  • 70:27 Free kick awarded for a foul by Barry Ferguson on Aaron Hughes. Direct free kick taken by Danny Murphy.
  • 69:26 Simon Davies takes a short corner, Clinton Dempsey takes a shot. Comfortable save by Ben Foster.
  • 68:16 Clinton Dempsey concedes a free kick for a foul on Stephen Carr. Free kick taken by Sebastian Larsson.
  • 67:08 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Barry Ferguson by Clinton Dempsey. Stephen Carr takes the free kick.
  • 65:24 Short corner taken by Clinton Dempsey, Simon Davies produces a right-footed shot from the edge of the box and misses to the right of the goal.
  • 61:49 Corner taken by Sebastian Larsson, Headed effort from inside the box by Roger Johnson misses to the right of the target.
  • 60:57 The assistant referee signals for offside against Diomansy Kamara. Scott Dann takes the indirect free kick.
  • 60:22 Foul by Simon Davies on Keith Fahey, free kick awarded. Direct free kick taken by Ben Foster.
  • 60:22 Substitution Alexander Hleb leaves the field to be replaced by Nikola Zigic.
  • 56:26 Zoltan Gera takes a shot. Comfortable save by Ben Foster.
  • 55:21 Cameron Jerome concedes a free kick for a foul on Brede Hangeland. Mark Schwarzer takes the free kick.
  • 53:47 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Alexander Hleb by Dickson Etuhu. Sebastian Larsson shoots direct from the free kick.
  • Correction - 52:06 Simon Davies takes the inswinging corner, assist by Zoltan Gera.
  • 52:06 Inswinging corner taken by Simon Davies, assist by Aaron Hughes.
  • 52:06 GOAL - Clinton DempseyFulham 1 - 1 Birmingham Clinton Dempsey grabs a goal from close range to the bottom left corner of the goal. Fulham 1-1 Birmingham.
  • 50:34 Short corner worked by Simon Davies.
  • 50:20 Diomansy Kamara takes a shot. Roger Johnson gets a block in.
  • 47:25 Free kick awarded for a foul by Simon Davies on Cameron Jerome. Free kick taken by Scott Dann.
  • 46:30 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Zoltan Gera by Stephen Carr. Free kick taken by Chris Baird.
  • 45:01 The referee gets the second half underway.
  • Half Time
  • 45:00+1:33 The players leave the pitch at half time.
  • 42:56 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Chris Baird by Sebastian Larsson. Chris Baird takes the free kick.
  • 41:26 Keith Fahey is caught offside. Aaron Hughes takes the free kick.
  • 40:29 The assistant referee flags for offside against Diomansy Kamara. Free kick taken by Ben Foster.
  • 39:51 The referee penalises Alexander Hleb for handball. Dickson Etuhu takes the direct free kick.
  • 39:03 Brede Hangeland challenges Alexander Hleb unfairly and gives away a free kick. Sebastian Larsson restarts play with the free kick.
  • 36:01 Corner from right by-line taken by Simon Davies.
  • 33:38 Corner taken by Sebastian Larsson from the left by-line played to the near post, clearance by Diomansy Kamara.
  • 31:40 Close range shot by Diomansy Kamara goes over the bar.
  • 30:32 Alexander Hleb gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Danny Murphy. Danny Murphy takes the direct free kick.
  • 25:31 The offside flag is raised against Cameron Jerome. Aaron Hughes takes the indirect free kick.
  • 23:20 Substitution Carlos Salcido goes off and John Pantsil comes on.
  • 21:43 Free kick awarded for a foul by Barry Ferguson on Clinton Dempsey. Brede Hangeland takes the free kick.
  • 19:18 The assist for the goal came from Alexander Hleb.
  • 19:18 GOAL - Sebastian LarssonFulham 0 - 1 Birmingham A goal is scored by Sebastian Larsson from inside the penalty box to the bottom left corner of the goal. Fulham 0-1 Birmingham.
  • 18:22 Alexander Hleb challenges Danny Murphy unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick taken by Danny Murphy.
  • 14:53 Effort from inside the area by Cameron Jerome misses to the left of the goal.
  • 13:45 The official flags Diomansy Kamara offside. Indirect free kick taken by Scott Dann.
  • 13:13 Zoltan Gera concedes a free kick for a foul on Lee Bowyer. Ben Foster restarts play with the free kick.
  • 11:00 Clinton Dempsey produces a right-footed shot from the edge of the area and misses to the left of the goal.
  • 7:18 Lee Bowyer has an effort at goal from just inside the box that misses to the right of the goal.
  • 5:55 The offside flag is raised against Diomansy Kamara. Indirect free kick taken by Ben Foster.
  • 4:03 Corner taken right-footed by Simon Davies, Aaron Hughes takes a shot. Keith Fahey gets a block in.
  • 2:21 Diomansy Kamara challenges Lee Bowyer unfairly and gives away a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Scott Dann.
  • 1:25 Dickson Etuhu concedes a free kick for a foul on Lee Bowyer. Free kick taken by Sebastian Larsson.
  • 0:43 Unfair challenge on Danny Murphy by Alexander Hleb results in a free kick. Danny Murphy restarts play with the free kick.
  • 0:00 The referee gets the match started.

Live text and data provided by The Press Association.



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Barclays Premier League table snapshot

As it stood on 27 Nov 2010 23:59 UK

Position Team P GD PTS
1 Man Utd 15 19 31
2 Arsenal 15 15 29
3 Chelsea 14 19 28
4 Man City 15 8 26
5 Bolton 15 6 23
6 Tottenham 14 2 22
7 Sunderland 15 1 20
8 Stoke 15 0 20
9 Liverpool 14 -1 19
10 Blackpool 15 -6 19
11 West Brom 15 -6 19
12 Newcastle 14 1 18
13 Blackburn 15 -7 18
14 Birmingham 15 -2 17
15 Aston Villa 15 -7 17
16 Everton 15 -2 16
17 Fulham 15 -3 15
18 Wigan 15 -15 14
19 Wolves 15 -10 12
20 West Ham 15 -12 12

see also
Saturday football as it happened
27 Nov 10 |  Football
Saturday football photos
27 Nov 10 |  Premier League



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