Skip to main content

No surprises

Posted on 1 January 2011  - 12:00

Harry Redknapp said before the match that he expected a real test from Fulham and he was proved right as we battled to a 1-0 win on New Year's Day.

No surprises

Harry Redknapp said before the match that he expected a real test from Fulham and he was proved right as we battled to a 1-0 win on New Year's Day.

Buoyed by a 2-0 win at Stoke on Tuesday, Fulham made us fight every inch of the way for our third win out of three over the Christmas and New Year period.

In the end, Gareth Bale's glancing header from Rafael van der Vaart's free-kick in the 42nd minute proved enough.

But we had to defend resolutely as Fulham pushed us back in the second half and came close when first Heurelho Gomes saved from Andy Johnson and Michael Dawson had to hack the loose ball off the line.

The manager was full of praise for the performance of 'Daws' and the returning William Gallas in the centre of defence as we kept a second-succesive clean sheet.

The win made it 11 matches unbeaten in all competitions since the loss at Bolton in November and moved us back above Chelsea into fourth.

"That's nine points out of nine and we couldn't have asked for more than that over the Christmas period," said Harry.

"I knew it would be tough. Fulham are well-organised and it's difficult to break them down.

"You never have an easy game against Fulham and they are not a team that you are going to open up and tear to pieces.

"In the second half, when they were chasing the game, they started to pen us in for spells, but we then looked dangerous on the counter-attack a couple of times and could have scored a second goal.

"Credit to Fulham, they played well. They went to Stoke and won 2-0 and Mark (Hughes) had them set-up well again, played good football and were solid.

"We had to be patient but sometimes you have to scrap out a result and we did that.

"We've played some fantastic football at home, we've moved the ball and opened teams up, but it was difficult this time. Fulham played well but we got the three points and you have to take the points as they come."