Fulham put a smile back on Jol's face but Bolton look downcast

Fulham 2 Bolton Wanderers 0

Craven Cottage

Martin Jol's face resembled thunder on Wednesday night. A pain the Europa League might have been, but for his Fulham side to go out of the competition in such excruciating circumstances, to the latest of injury-time equalisers, was tough to take. A bulldog chewing a wasp, to borrow an old graphic expression, would have looked less anguished.

Three days later, Jol was jolly again. Fulham brushed aside a woeful Bolton Wanderers at Craven Cottage and eased up into the safer regions of the Premier League. Just perhaps it was good to be rid of Europe, after all.

"After the disappointment on Wednesday, the most important thing was to get the points," Jol said. "We needed to get a third goal but were a bit sloppy in the second half and lost our momentum." Was Europe a distraction? "We never said that but... maybe it is a blessing that we are no longer in it. With all those games, a lot of Thursday nights, it was hard going. But now we can focus on the League."

Fulham showed no symptoms of a post-Europa hangover in a stirring first-half display. Shots rained in on Jussi Jaaskelainen, Bolton's goalkeeper, from all angles, with Andy Johnson driving wide when clean through, Clint Dempsey miscuing a volley and then a Danny Murphy effort flying off-target via a deflection. Johnson declined to use his left foot, when he should have done, and was blocked out; Brede Hangeland nodded over from a Murphy corner when it seemed easier to score.

It mattered not, though. Fulham were soon back on track, when Bryan Ruiz crossed from the right and Dempsey nosed ahead of Dedryck Boyata to nod past Jaaskelainen. Two minutes later, it was 2-0, when Ruiz latched on to a rather hopeful punt forward from Hangeland. The Costa Rica winger outpaced Marcos Alonso and then delightfully chipped the ball over the onrushing Jaaskelainen.

Fulham were in cruise control and David Stockdale in goal had little to do. And, therefore, little chance to impress the watching Fabio Capello, the England manager, and Ray Clemence, his goalkeeping coach. But he did move smartly to keep out a low drive from Mark Davies – just about enough to keep Capello and Clemence interested.

Bolton were clueless and small wonder that Owen Coyle, their manager, made two changes at half-time – Chris Eagles for Darren Pratley and Gretar Steinsson for Boyata. "The team was a bit fragile," Coyle said. "To give away that second goal, almost straight from the restart, was poor. We shot ourselves in the foot."

Fulham (4-2-3-1): Stockdale; Baird, Senderos, Hangeland, J A Riise; Murphy, Etuhu; Ruiz, Dembele, Dempsey; Johnson.

Bolton (4-4-2): Jaaskelainen; Boyata (Steinsson, h-t), Cahill, Knight, Alonso; Reo-Coker, Pratley (Eagles, h-t), Muamba, M Davies; K Davies (Ngog, 56), Klasnic.

Referee Chris Foy.

Man of the match Johnson (Fulham).

Match rating 6/10.

Arts and Entertainment
tvThe C-Word, TV review
Arts and Entertainment
The Ridiculous Six has been produced by Adam Sandler, who also stars in it
filmNew controversy after nine Native American actors walked off set
Danny Jones was in the Wales squad for the 2013 World Cup
rugby leagueKeighley Cougars half-back was taken off after just four minutes
Life and Style
The original ZX Spectrum was simple to plug into your TV and get playing on
techThirty years on, the ZX Spectrum is back, after a fashion
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

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

Day In a Page

'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

Everyone is talking about The Trews

Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before
'Queer saint' Peter Watson left his mark on British culture by bankrolling artworld giants

'Queer saint' who bankrolled artworld giants

British culture owes a huge debt to Peter Watson, says Michael Prodger
Pushkin Prizes: Unusual exchange programme aims to bring countries together through culture

Pushkin Prizes brings countries together

Ten Scottish schoolchildren and their Russian peers attended a creative writing workshop in the Highlands this week
14 best kids' hoodies

14 best kids' hoodies

Don't get caught out by that wind on the beach. Zip them up in a lightweight top to see them through summer to autumn
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The acceptable face of the Emirates

The acceptable face of the Emirates

Has Abu Dhabi found a way to blend petrodollars with principles, asks Robert Fisk