Feb 23, 2013 at 12.45pm UK at ​Craven Cottage
Fulham
1-0
StokeStoke City
Berbatov (45')
Ruiz (11')
FT(HT: 1-0)

Nzonzi (23'), Wilson (35'), Shawcross (75')

Match Analysis: Fulham 1-0 Stoke City

Fulham forward Dimitar Berbatov scores against Stoke on February 23, 2013
© PA Photos
Sports Mole looks back over Fulham's 1-0 victory over Stoke City at Craven Cottage.

A volley from Dimitar Berbatov was enough for Fulham to record a 1-0 victory over Stoke City at Craven Cottage this afternoon.

The visiting Potters had a good chance to draw level during the second half, but Jonathan Walters saw his penalty saved by Australian goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer.

Sports Mole has looked back over the encounter to determine if Stoke can argue that they deserved a share of the spoils in West London.

Match statistics:

Fulham:
Shots 20
On target 9
Possession 55%
Corners 9
Fouls 4

Stoke:
Shots 7
On target 2
Possession 45%
Corners 4
Fouls 9

Was the result fair?

Fulham were by no means at their best, but they more than deserved the three points. For large parts of the encounter Stoke offered very little and rarely looked like scoring. In the closing stages, only some wayward shooting and passing prevented the home side from extending their lead further.

Fulham's performance

When you have a player like Berbatov in your side, anything is possible. The Bulgarian can be frustrating, but on days like today he can be a match winner. His strike in first-half stoppage was a contender for goal of the season and gave his side something to defend after the break. They did that well and even when the rearguard was breached, Schwarzer was on hand to save.

Stoke's performance

Stoke have only won once away from home this season and on the evidence of today, you can see why. They offered very little threat during the opening 45 minutes and despite applying some pressure shortly after the restart, they didn't do enough to argue that they have been hard done by. It could have been a different game though had Walters converted from the spot.

Sports Mole's man of the match

Georgios Karagounis: He may not be as sprightly as he once was, but everything that Karagounis did today had a touch of quality about it. He rarely surrendered possession and when possible, he looked to get the ball forward. The 35-year-old was also not shy to get involved with a few tackles.

Biggest gaffe

Taking a penalty is not as easy as it looks, but a professional footballer should always score from 12 yards. Walters's effort was low enough, but the power was lacking and Schwarzer got down to not only deny the Stoke striker, but also hold the ball.

Referee performance

With a physical side like Stoke involved, it was always going to be a busy afternoon for Lee Probert. He deserves plenty of credit though because he officiated the game well. Every yellow card was warranted and the decision to give Stoke a penalty was correct.

What next?

Fulham: Next Saturday the Whites face a long trip up to the North-East to take on Sunderland.

Stoke: The Potters are also in action on the same day as West Ham United visit the Britannia Stadium.

Fulham forward Dimitar Berbatov scores against Stoke on February 23, 2013
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