Result: Fulham 5-2 Newcastle

Clint Dempsey
© PA Photos
Fulham put in a fantastic second-half performance to beat Newcastle 5-2.

Fulham secured an impressive 5-2 win over high-flying Newcastle after initially going 1-0 down in a poor first-half for the Cottagers.

Newcastle started the first half as the better side and looked comfortable passing the ball around the midfield and defence. Fulham struggled to keep hold on the ball and looked nervous at the back.

In the 13th minute, Philippe Senderos had a defensive mix-up with his goalkeeper David Stockdale and nearly headed into his own goal. Newcastle continued to press and Shola Ameobi had a header saved.

Yohan Cabaye controlled the centre of midfield as Martin Jol looked visibly frustrated by his players' inability to pass the ball to each other. Newcastle had another chance through Fabricio Collocini, who headed well at the back post, only for it to go straight at the keeper.

Newcastle finally took a deserved lead in the 43rd minute after Bryan Ruiz gave away the ball in midfield and Danny Guthrie struck a wonderful shot into the top corner.

Fulham came out in the second half looking a much better side and began to string some passes together. The London side got a lifeline through a dubious penalty decision after Davide Santon brought down Damien Duff on the edge of the box. Danny Murphy put away the penalty to make it 1-1 in the 52nd minute.

Fulham enjoyed a new-found confidence and started to get on top of the game. Clint Dempsey then shocked the Magpies with a goal to give Fulham the lead. A Bobby Zamora shot was saved by Tim Krul but then bundled in by the American international.

The Cottagers then added a third against a shell-shocked Newcastle, Dempsey slotting in a right-footed finish after a neat through ball by Zamora. Fulham didn't stop there and continued to push forward, earning a penalty after Krul brought down Andy Johnson in the area. Zamora put away the penalty in the 72nd minute.

Newcastle reduced the defecit through a Hatem Ben-Arfa with an 85th-minute consolation goal. Dempsey finally completed an impressive hat-trick in the 89th minute to round off a fantastic second half performance by Fulham.

Andy Johnson
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