JOHN KRETLOW - Monday, December 5, 2011
Clint Dempsey scored his fourth league goal of the season to give Fulham the big win over visiting Liverpool in Monday Premier League action.
Dempsey started and went the distance for the Cottagers.
Fulham jump to 13th place in the standings, giving them a five point cushion from the relegation zone.
Liverpool came out of the gates quick and nearly got the lead in the second minute. Luis Suarez rolled his man and found a charging Andy Carroll whose heavy shot was saved by Fulham ‘keeper Mark Schwarzer.
Fulham's first chance on goal came in the seventh minute when Moussa Dembélé's shot was saved by Liverpool's goalie Pepe Reina.
In the 30th minute Liverpool's Henderson made a charging run into space and shot passed Schwarzer, but Fulham were luckily bailed out by the woodwork.
Liverpool's Jose Enrique bulleted a shot from 25 yards out, but Schwarzer was up to the task and dove to his right for the impressive save in the 52nd minute.
The 71st minute saw Liverpool go down a man after Jay Spearing made a reckless challenge on Dembélé. The referee gave the Liverpool midfielder a red card, debilitating the side for the rest of the game.
Fulham's best chance up to that point came after a clever combination play between Dembélé and Bryan Ruiz opened up space in the Liverpool area. The Costa Rican then found Dempsey, whose right foot shot hit the post, agonizingly coming close to giving Fulham the late lead.
In the 84th minute Robert Downing was able to brush off four Fulham defenders and rocket a shot. Fulham's Schwarzer though was up to the task and tipped the shot onto the post.
Dempsey was active and effective all night, and the Texan was rewarded finally for his good play in the 85th minute.
The former New England Revolution star pounced on a rebound after a Danny Murphy shot and knocked home Fulham's game winning goal in the 85th minute.
Philippe Senderos, Dembélé, and Dempsey were booked for the Cottagers, while Craig Bellamy received a yellow card for Liverpool.
Fulham travel to play Swansea City next weekend, while Liverpool host Queens Park Rangers.