Fulham 1 West Brom 1 match report: Baggies’ late leveller puts pressure on Martin Jol
Fine Sidwell strike had given the Cottagers an early lead but they couldn't hold on for their first win of the season
Glenn Moore is Football Editor for The Independent and a Uefa B licence holder. Glenn has worked for the Independent newspapers since 1993, initially as cricket correspondent of the Independent on Sunday, subsequently as football correspondent of The Independent before becoming football editor in 2004.
Sunday 15 September 2013
Fulham's new owner passed up the chance to watch his team yesterday, for which Martin Jol may be grateful. Managers are always vulnerable when a club changes hands and the Dutchman would not have wanted Shahid Khan to hear chants of 'Jol out' after Fulham threw away the chance to secure their first home win since April.
“It is disappointing,” said Jol, “If we were bottom of league I could understand but we are 12, with four points, like many other teams. It is only a minority, but it is like with women, high expectations can make you unhappy.”
Jol had a face like thunder when Gareth McAuley powered in a 93rd-minute header to score West Bromwich Albion's first goal of the season and avert a growing crisis for their manager, Steve Clarke. The goal rewarded Albion's strong finish but Fulham should have settled the match long before, their sporadically bright football carving out several good opportunities. Only one was taken, Steve Sidwell volleying in a loose ball from close range after Philippe Senderos and McAuley had tussled for a after 23rd-minute Alexander Kacaniklic corner. Three other goals were ruled out for offside with the last, a volley by Hugo Rodallega five minutes from time being a marginal call though as Jol pointed out, Bryan Ruiz should have scored earlier in the move but hit the bar. Fulham's miserable finale was capped when Ruiz fell awkwardly on his ankle and was taken off by stretcher. “It looks serious,” said Jol, “but we have to wait for the scan”
Albion had finished last season scoring five against Manchester United, but that was when Romelu Lukaku led their front line. This season they have found goals elusive. In an attempt to rectify that Clarke spent £13m on deadline day on Victor Anichebe and Stephane Sessegnon. Anichebe made his debut yesterday but Sessegnon 's work permit application hot what Clarke called 'a glitch'. He expects it to be resolved. With Shane Long and Matej Vydra injured Clarke was grateful Nicolas Anelka had unretired. The Frenchman's heyday, however, is long gone and he squandered a brace of fine chances.
With Anichebe rolling Brede Hageland but then shooting at Stockdale, it seemed Albion would draw another blank. Then substitutes Scott Sinclair and Saido Beradino – who gave a bright cameo – forced a corner. Chris Brut delivered and McAuley sent the Albion fans into rapture. “It was”, said Clarke with some understatement, “a really important goal for us”.
Referee: Lee Probert.
Man of the match: Kasami
Match rating: 6/10
Latest in Sport
David De Gea to Real Madrid: Spanish club resume £28m pursuit after fending Manchester United off Sergio Ramos
Karim Benzema to Arsenal: Transfer news live - Angel Di Maria to leave Manchester United, Emmanuel Adebayor to Aston Villa
Diego Costa biography: Chelsea striker's route to the top - from those who shared his journey
Ashes 2015 Third Test Day One report: England skittle Australia for 136, James Anderson takes six wickets, Ian Bell hits half-century
Nicolas Otamendi to Manchester United: Sergio Ramos is only defender of interest to Louis van Gaal
- 1 Cara Delevigne addresses awkward interview on Good Day Sacramento
- 2 Model's video shoot on the beach interrupted by sudden landing of a group of illegal migrants
- 3 The difference between a psychopath and a sociopath
- 4 MH370: Boeing 777 wing that could match missing plane found on the French island of Reunion
- 5 Living in Spain and commuting to London 'cheaper than actually working in London'
Yvette Cooper: Our choice is years of Tory rule under Jeremy Corbyn – or a return to a Labour government
Labour leadership contender Jeremy Corbyn says 'we can learn a great deal from Karl Marx'
I am the Jeremy Corbyn supporter that many will tell you doesn't exist
Public anger after French sunbather beaten up by gang for wearing a bikini in Reims park
Labour leadership: New poll shows party is now even 'less electable' than under Ed Miliband
Calais crisis: For desperate migrants it is 'England or death' as they brave dogs, riot police and speeding trains