Fagan picks Fulham's pocket to resurrect Hull

Hull City 2 Fulham 0

Iain Dowie's arrival here might have been almost inconspicuous, but his departure was not. Dowie, taking charge of his first home game since succeeding Phil Brown as manager, had sneaked into the dugout without being noticed yet left after Hull City's crucial victory with fists pumping to a crowd lavishing their new saviour with a standing ovation.

What a difference a week makes. Dowie and his players were inconsolable following their defeat at Fratton Park but now have genuine hope of producing another great escape. This win, courtesy of goals from Jimmy Bullard and Craig Fagan, saw them draw level on points with West Ham but with a game in hand. Their destiny is in their hands and Dowie said: "I enjoyed that, in the end and specially at the final whistle.

"Some players have been sick all week and fate conspired against us a bit, but those selected responded. I thought they showed guts and desire. Paul McShane lost his father just over a week ago so the lad must have a heart the size of a bucket. I'm just pleased for the boys because they've worked really hard and that's a great response to the cruel nature of last week's defeat. We've got to take care of our own business, but the manner of this win gives me a lot of confidence."

Dowie made four changes from the side beaten so crushingly at Fratton Park last weekend, the most notable being the surprise recall of Ibrahima Sonko, the on-loan Stoke defender. Totally ignored by the previous manager, Sonko made his first appearance since October in the heart of the Hull defence. Fulham made five changes themselves with next week's Europa League quarter-final against Wolfsburg in mind. This contest was of far more significance to Hull than the visitors, yet it was Roy Hodgson's side that made the brighter start and almost took the lead inside four minutes but Zoltan Gera's raking drive was kept out by Boaz Myhill.

Some unexpected help from Chris Smalling went a long way towards soothing home nerves in the 16th minute when his clumsy challenge bundled Jozy Altidore to the ground and referee Chris Foy had no option but to award a penalty.

Bullard converted for his third goal of the season and against the run of play, Dowie's side had something to protect. The advantage looked fragile, however and never more so than in the 28th minute when Bjorn Riise's corner was headed down to Gera by Brede Hangeland but his goalbound shot was superbly blocked on the line by George Boateng. Gera was denied on the line again in the 37th minute when his shot beyond Myhill was hacked clear by Steven Mouyokolo and somehow Dowie's men remained ahead.

Sandwiched in between this was a free kick from Bullard which bounced wickedly in front of Mark Schwarzer but the goalkeeper managed to keep it out before blocking another effort from Dean Marney soon after.

Hull craved a second goal and it arrived minutes into the second half when Marney's deep cross found Fagan, who outjumped Paul Konchesky before sending a looping header over Schwarzer and into the far corner. It was the cushion Dowie's side needed and survival looks achievable for the second time in succession, only this time with a different man at the helm.

Hodgson said: "Both goals were poor defensively, but I was very disappointed in general today. But Hull showed great grit and determination, like you would expect from a side fighting for their lives towards the bottom of the table."

Attendance: 24,361

Referee: Chris Foy

Man of the match: Mouyokolo

Match rating: 7/10

Life and Style
“What is it like being a girl?” was the question on the lips of one inquisitive Reddit user this week
News
peopleDave Legeno, the actor who played werewolf Fenrir Greyback in the Harry Potter films, has died
Arts and Entertainment
Armando Iannucci, the creator of 'The Thick of It' says he has
tvArmando Iannucci to concentrate on US show Veep
Life and Style
beauty
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Sport
Luis Suarez looks towards the crowd during the 2-1 victory over England
transfers
Life and Style
Swimsuit, £245, by Agent Provocateur
fashion

Diving in at the deep end is no excuse for shirking the style stakes

Sport
German supporters (left) and Argentina fans
world cup 2014Final gives England fans a choice between to old enemies
Arts and Entertainment
A still from the worldwide Dawn of the Planet of the Apes trailer debut
film
News
peopleMario Balotelli poses with 'shotgun' in controversial Instagram pic
News
A mugshot of Ian Watkins released by South Wales Police following his guilty pleas
peopleBandmates open up about abuse
Sport
Basketball superstar LeBron James gets into his stride for the Cleveland Cavaliers
sportNBA superstar announces decision to return to Cleveland Cavaliers
Sport
Javier Mascherano of Argentina tackles Arjen Robben of the Netherlands as he attempts a shot
world cup 2014
Arts and Entertainment
The successful ITV drama Broadchurch starring David Tenant and Olivia Coleman came to an end tonight
tv
Sport
Four ski officials in Slovenia have been suspended following allegations of results rigging
sportFour Slovenian officials suspended after allegations they helped violinist get slalom place
News
14 March 2011: George Clooney testifies before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee during a hearing titled 'Sudan and South Sudan: Independence and Insecurity.' Clooney is co-founder of the Satellite Sentinel Project which uses private satellites to collect evidence of crimes against civilian populations in Sudan
people
Arts and Entertainment
Balaban is indirectly responsible for the existence of Downton Abbey, having first discovered Julian Fellowes' talents as a screenwriter
tvCast members told to lose weight after snacking on set
Life and Style
More than half of young adults have engaged in 'unwanted but consensual sexting with a committed partner,' according to research
tech
Life and Style
A binge is classed as four or more alcoholic drinks for women and five or more for men, consumed over a roughly two-hour period
tech
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily World Cup Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: Peace without magnanimity - the summit in a railway siding that ended the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

Peace without magnanimity - the summit in a railway siding that ended the fighting
Scottish independence: How the Commonwealth Games could swing the vote

Scottish independence: How the Commonwealth Games could swing the vote

In the final part of our series, Chris Green arrives in Glasgow - a host city struggling to keep the politics out of its celebration of sport
Out in the cold: A writer spends a night on the streets and hears the stories of the homeless

A writer spends a night on the streets

Rough sleepers - the homeless, the destitute and the drunk - exist in every city. Will Nicoll meets those whose luck has run out
Striking new stations, high-speed links and (whisper it) better services - the UK's railways are entering a new golden age

UK's railways are entering a new golden age

New stations are opening across the country and our railways appear to be entering an era not seen in Britain since the early 1950s
Conchita Wurst becomes a 'bride' on the Paris catwalk - and proves there is life after Eurovision

Conchita becomes a 'bride' on Paris catwalk

Alexander Fury salutes the Eurovision Song Contest winner's latest triumph
Pétanque World Championship in Marseilles hit by

Pétanque 'world cup' hit by death threats

This year's most acrimonious sporting event took place in France, not Brazil. How did pétanque get so passionate?
Whelks are healthy, versatile and sustainable - so why did we stop eating them in the UK?

Why did we stop eating whelks?

Whelks were the Victorian equivalent of the donor kebab and our stocks are abundant. So why do we now export them all to the Far East?
10 best women's sunglasses

In the shade: 10 best women's sunglasses

From luxury bespoke eyewear to fun festival sunnies, we round up the shades to be seen in this summer
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014: Lionel Messi? Javier Mascherano is key for Argentina...

World Cup final: Messi? Mascherano is key for Argentina...

No 10 is always centre of attention but Barça team-mate is just as crucial to finalists’ hopes
Siobhan-Marie O’Connor: Swimmer knows she needs Glasgow joy on road to Rio

Siobhan-Marie O’Connor: Swimmer needs Glasgow joy on road to Rio

18-year-old says this month’s Commonwealth Games are a key staging post in her career before time slips away
The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

A future Palestine state will have no borders and be an enclave within Israel, surrounded on all sides by Israeli-held territory, says Robert Fisk
A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: The German people demand an end to the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

The German people demand an end to the fighting
New play by Oscar Wilde's grandson reveals what the Irish wit said at his trials

New play reveals what Oscar Wilde said at trials

For a century, what Wilde actually said at his trials was a mystery. But the recent discovery of shorthand notes changed that. Now his grandson Merlin Holland has turned them into a play
Can scientists save the world's sea life from

Can scientists save our sea life?

By the end of the century, the only living things left in our oceans could be plankton and jellyfish. Alex Renton meets the scientists who are trying to turn the tide
Richard III, Trafalgar Studios, review: Martin Freeman gives highly intelligent performance

Richard III review

Martin Freeman’s psychotic monarch is big on mockery but wanting in malice