Match Report: Sandro Raniere and Jermain Defoe turn joke back on Chelsea

Fulham 0 Tottenham 3

Craven Cottage

Maybe appointing an unpopular manager can succeed. While Andre Villas-Boas never encountered the outright hostility endured by Rafael Benitez at Chelsea the Portuguese was a distinctly unwelcome summer replacement for the largely loved Harry Redknapp at White Hart Lane.

Those Chelsea fans who mocked their north London rivals when Roman Abramovich's cast-off pitched up at Tottenham are laughing no longer. Spurs are now behind Chelsea only on goal difference nine points in seven days having catapulted them into the fourth Champions League qualifying place.

Villas-Boas' joy was not, though, unconfined after an ultimately comfortable victory secured by a freak 40-yard goal from Sandro and a well-taken brace by Jermain Defoe. Gareth Bale and Michael Dawson both succumbed to hamstring injuries. Neither, though, were serious, said Villas-Boas who forecast Dawson would be out for a week, Bale maybe two.

It was injury added to insult for Bale who was booked in he first half for diving after being brought down by Steve Sidwell. “It was harsh,” said Villas-Boas. “You can gain an unfair reputation for being a diver. Gareth has suffered big injuries to ankles and sometimes he wants to protect himself, he is suffering for it as he may put his body in positions where the referees think he is diving.”

The manager added: “We have had a very good week. We have changed the momentum of our results. It was a game where one goal can unlock the game and we were fortunate to get it. It was good for Sandro, he is such an important player for us, and Defoe has a clinical touch.”

The supporters of both sides were buoyed by the pre-match news of Chelsea's latest embarrassment but attention quickly turned to their own London derby. If Clint Dempsey felt unloved at Fulham while he was still at the club he is certainly unloved now. His early touches were booed and there were loud – and relieved – cheers when he shot wide after bewildering both Fulham centre-backs in the second minute.

For the rest of the half the few chances that were created fell to Fulham who had, in Dimitar Berbatov, the most talented player on the pitch by a distance. But for an errant linesman's flag his sublime 22nd-minute pass would have left Mladen Petric clear on goal. Prior to that Karim Frei shot over from Ashkan Dejagah's cross when he should have done better while afterwards Hugo Lloris made a sharp save from Mladen Petric following a near post cross by John Arne Riise. Petric later shot over on the turn.

The second period began as quietly as the first then Sandro collected the ball by the centre circle, advanced a few yards unchallenged, and decide to chance his luck. His low drive appeared to catch Mark Schwarzer by surprise and the goalkeeper could only turn it against the post and into the net.

Five minutes later Bale pulled up in his follow through after having a shot saved. Spurs' afternoon looked to have taken a bad turn but Bale's replacement, Gylfi Sigurdsson, then drove into the box, skipping past Senderos, before squaring for Defoe to score. Spurs completed a three-goal 21-minute burst when Dempsey sent Defoe clear as Senderos tried to play offside.

Fulham are now without a win in seven games, a goal in five hours, and have taken one point in 12. Fortunately Newcastle, who are in even worse form, are their next opponents and captain Brede Hangeland will be back from suspension to play them. His understudy, Phillippe Senderos, was at fault for both Defoe's goals.

“Hangeland and [Bryan] Ruiz will be back next week,” said Jol. He added: In the first half I thought we had better opportunities than them and it was very disappointing to concede three goals out of nothing. We have started to make mistakes. The first goal looked a stoppable shot. That changed everything.”

News
peopleJonathan Ross has got a left-field suggestion to replace Clarkson
News
Johnny Depp is perhaps best known for his role as Jack Sparrow in Pirates of the Caribbean
peopleBut how did he break it?
News
Andy Davidhazy at the beginning (left) and end (right) of his hike
video
Arts and Entertainment
The teaser trailer has provoked more questions than answers
filmBut what is Bond's 'secret' that Moneypenny is talking about?
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Sport
footballDoes Hodgson's England team have an identity yet?
Sport
Lewis Hamilton secured his second straight pole of the season
f1Vettel beats Rosberg into third after thunderstorm delays qualifying
Travel
travel Dreamland Margate, Britain’s oldest amusement park, is set to reopen
News
news
News
Founders James Brown and Tim Southwell with a mock-up of the first ever ‘Loaded’ magazine in 1994
media
News
Threlfall says: 'I am a guardian of the reality keys. I think I drive directors nuts'
people
Voices
voices The group has just unveiled a billion dollar plan to help nurse the British countryside back to health
News
The Westgate, a gay pub in the centre of Gloucester which played host to drag queens, has closed
news
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
and  

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

Day In a Page

The saffron censorship that governs India: Why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression

The saffron censorship that governs India

Zareer Masani reveals why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression
Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Supreme Court rules Dominic Grieve's ministerial veto was invalid
Distressed Zayn Malik fans are cutting themselves - how did fandom get so dark?

How did fandom get so dark?

Grief over Zayn Malik's exit from One Direction seemed amusing until stories of mass 'cutting' emerged. Experts tell Gillian Orr the distress is real, and the girls need support
The galaxy collisions that shed light on unseen parallel Universe

The cosmic collisions that have shed light on unseen parallel Universe

Dark matter study gives scientists insight into mystery of space
The Swedes are adding a gender-neutral pronoun to their dictionary

Swedes introduce gender-neutral pronoun

Why, asks Simon Usborne, must English still struggle awkwardly with the likes of 's/he' and 'they'?
Disney's mega money-making formula: 'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan

Disney's mega money-making formula

'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan
Lobster has gone mainstream with supermarket bargains for £10 or less - but is it any good?

Lobster has gone mainstream

Anthea Gerrie, raised on meaty specimens from the waters around Maine, reveals how to cook up an affordable feast
Easter 2015: 14 best decorations

14 best Easter decorations

Get into the Easter spirit with our pick of accessories, ornaments and tableware
Paul Scholes column: Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season

Paul Scholes column

Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season
Inside the Kansas greenhouses where Monsanto is 'playing God' with the future of the planet

The future of GM

The greenhouses where Monsanto 'plays God' with the future of the planet
Britain's mild winters could be numbered: why global warming is leaving UK chillier

Britain's mild winters could be numbered

Gulf Stream is slowing down faster than ever, scientists say
Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Donation brings total raised by Homeless Veterans campaign to at least £1.25m
Oh dear, the most borrowed book at Bank of England library doesn't inspire confidence

The most borrowed book at Bank of England library? Oh dear

The book's fifth edition is used for Edexcel exams
Cowslips vs honeysuckle: The hunt for the UK’s favourite wildflower

Cowslips vs honeysuckle

It's the hunt for UK’s favourite wildflower
Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

Did a botched blackmail attempt help Cyril Smith escape justice?

A fresh twist reveals the Liberal MP was targeted by the notorious South African intelligence agency Boss