Fulham miss Zamora as they draw with West Brom

Fulham 1 West Bromwich Albion 1

Fulham began life after Bobby Zamora with a whimper as West Brom secured a point on Roy Hodgson's first return to Craven Cottage.

The 31-year-old striker left for west London rivals QPR yesterday, leaving the home side bereft of attacking ideas.

Makeshift striker Clint Dempsey looked like he would prove Fulham's saviour once again as he tucked home midway through the second period.

However, the Cottagers lacked a cutting edge and West Brom made them pay with eight minutes remaining.

Substitute Somen Tchoyi fired home in front of the visiting support to ensure Hodgson took home a point home after a tough battle with his former club.

Heading into the match, Martin Jol ran with a line-up missing a recognised striker as new signing Pavel Pogrebnyak was not registered in time to feature and Andrew Johnson was left out on the 18-man squad.

Reported Fulham target Peter Odemwingie was recalled to the West Brom starting line-up and was the only change made to the side that faced Stoke in the league 11 days ago.

It was a strong-looking line-up named by Hodgson as he went in search of victory at his old stomping ground.

The match marked the former Fulham manager's first return to Craven Cottage after a highly successful spell that saw the west Londoners reach the 2010 Europa League final.

Hodgson received a standing ovation from the home support as the he made his way to the dugout, although there was no room for sentiment on the field.

Fulham started brightly and, after Steve Sidwell struck wide inside two minutes, Dempsey jinked into the box but could not quite get a shot away.

James Morrison forced David Stockdale into action in a rare Baggies attack and play soon returned to the other end, where Fulham thought they had taken an 11th-minute lead.

An exquisite through ball from Danny Murphy put Dempsey clear to net with relative ease, although the goal was chalked off for offside.

Odemwingie curled wide as the Baggies threatened to counter attack, although it was the hosts that were bossing possession.

While Fulham were looking in control, they lacked conviction and seemed devoid of ideas.

The Cottagers almost went behind when the visitors broke and Stockdale had to scramble across goal to stop a Marc-Antoine Fortune effort trickling in.

Jol deployed Ruiz just off Dempsey in place of Zamora, although they lacked the England international's presence in attack.

Ruiz beat Ben Foster to a looping Murphy ball but headed well wide, before Dempsey tested the West Brom goalkeeper as half-time approached.

Simon Cox saw a shot saved moments into the second period as the Baggies began brightly, penning Fulham back in their own half.

Fortune forced Stockdale to save down low during a 10 minute period of dominance, before Ruiz broke into the box at the other end only to toe-poke straight at Foster.

The effort was soon followed by a John Arne Riise piledriver as play began to swing in Fulham's favour.

The hosts were pressing and hoping to find a gap in West Brom's defence, which they managed to in the 69th minute.

Graham Dorrans' rash clearance gave Fulham possession and Ruiz played a neat pass to Dempsey, who directed the ball past Foster inside the box.

Fulham continued to press after breaking the deadlock but were caught out by West Brom in the 82nd minute.

Tchoyi, having come off the substitute's bench five minutes earlier, latched onto a Morrison pass to fire past Stockdale.

Jol's men continued to press after conceding and Dempsey headed over from a whipped-in Murphy corner as the clock wound down.

Fulham continued to bombard the visitors' back line deep into stoppage time, although were unable to find a winner and were met by boos at full time.

PA

Sport
England's women celebrate after their 3rd place play-off win against Germany
Women's World CupFara Williams converts penalty to secure victory and bronze medals
Arts and Entertainment
Ricardo by Edward Sutcliffe, 2014
artPortraits of LA cricketers from notorious suburb go on display
News
newsHillary Clinton comments on viral Humans of New York photo of gay teenager
Arts and Entertainment
The gang rape scene in the Royal Opera’s production of Gioachino Rossini’s Guillaume Tell has caused huge controversy
music
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Day In a Page

The Greek referendum exposes a gaping hole at the heart of the European Union – its distinct lack of any genuine popular legitimacy

Gaping hole at the heart of the European Union

Treatment of Greece has shown up a lack of genuine legitimacy
Number of young homeless in Britain 'more than three times the official figures'

'Everything changed when I went to the hostel'

Number of young homeless people in Britain is 'more than three times the official figures'
Compton Cricket Club

Compton Cricket Club

Portraits of LA cricketers from notorious suburb to be displayed in London
London now the global money-laundering centre for the drug trade, says crime expert

Wlecome to London, drug money-laundering centre for the world

'Mexico is its heart and London is its head'
The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court that helps a winner keep on winning

The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court

It helps a winner keep on winning
Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate
Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

The science of swearing

What lies behind the use of four-letter words?
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won't have him back

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won’t have him back
Africa on the menu: Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the continent

Africa on the menu

Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the hot new continent
Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

Who will fill Donna Karan's boots?

The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'