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Match Reports

REPORT: Fulham 2-1 Barnsley

23 December 2017

The Reds slip to defeat here in West London with the hosts edging things in an action-packed second half.

Fulham goals from Floyd Ayite and Sheyi Ojo were enough for Fulham this afternoon despite Tom Bradshaw drawing the Reds level. 

 

Paul Heckingbottom made just one change from last weekend's 0-0 draw at Brentford, an enforced one as Ethan Pinnock replaced the injured Matty Pearson in the centre of defence. 

 

In a scrappy start to the first half, Andy Yiadom was booked early on for a crunching challenge on on Aboubakar Kamara just outside the box. 

From the resulting set-piece, Adam Davies had two attempts at claiming a loose ball before seeing his defenders clear with Fulham looking close to poking the ball home inside the six yard box. 

Ojo then found space outside the box and curled one towards the top corner but Davies made a terrific one-handed stop, clawing the ball over the bar. 

On 13 minutes Harvey Barnes found room inside the box before being clattered by Kevin McDonald. The referee ignored Reds claims for the penalty and awarded a corner instead, which came to nothing. 

Mr Linnington got his yellow card out again soon after that, but booked Gary Gardner who'd crunched into a 50/50 challenge with Stefan Johansen.

It was all Fulham as they attempted to get beyond the Reds down the flanks, but some terrific defending was keeping the game locked at 0-0.

On the half hour mark, Ojo was booked as he lost control of the ball on the run and uphended Gardner in trying to retain it. 

Shortly afterwards, Mamadou Thiam did well to find Barnes but his shot was blocked. Home 'keeper Marcus Bettinelli then mis-kicked and it fell outside the box for Barnes whose shot was bending into the net only for the Fulham stopper to race back and claw away from the goal with Thiam ready to pounce.

10 minutes later and Thiam again was proving a handful, this time trapping a long ball instantly then chipping a delightful ball into the box for the waiting George Moncur, but the Reds number 10 couldn't get over it properly and it screwed just over the crossbar.

Kamara had the best Fulham opportunity right on half time when Ayite's cross found him unmarked from around six yards out but his header whistled wide. 

HALF TIME: Fulham 0-0 Barnsley

It was still Fulham enjoying most of the play in the opening 10 minutes of the second period and they finally took the lead when Ayite was afforded too much space to work in, then fired a superb effort in from around 25 yards out, giving Davies no chance at all for 1-0.

On 61 minutes Heckingbottom made a double change with Adam Hammill & Lloyd Isgrove replacing George Moncur and Mamadou Thiam.

Five minutes later and the Reds levelled against the run of play when Yiadom charged down the left and as Hammill took away the full back, Yids cut back onto his right foot, sent in a teasing cross towards the six yards box and there was Bradshaw to nod home beyond Bettinelli for the equaliser!

However, five minutes later and the hosts restored their lead when a nothing cross from Ojo looked to be sailing over the bar only to somehow dip and sneak into the far corner. It was a sickening goal to concede after the Reds had fought their way back into the match.

Ike Ugbo replaced Harvey Barnes on 79 minutes. 

He won a corner almost immediately and after Hammill's inswinging delivery wasn't cleared, Bradshaw tried to spin and turn it in but Fulham defenders blocked the path to goal. 

On 84 minutes Gardner jinked into space and towards the box but instead of slipping in Hammill to his right he opted to shoot but powered it over the bar. 

The home side saw out the final stages pretty comfotably and the Reds search for a victory will have to wait until at least Tuesday afternoon when Preston visit Oakwell on Boxing Day. 

FULL TIME: Fulham 2-1 Barnsley

Reds XI: Davies (GK); McCarthy, Pinnock, Lindsay, Yiadom; Williams, Gardner, Moncur (Hammill 61), Barnes (Ugbo 79); Thiam (Isgrove 61), Bradshaw.

Unused: Townsend (GK), Fryers, Cavare, Bird.


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