Home » EPL, Latest » Match Report: Fulham 2 Stoke 1

Russian striker Pavel Pogrebnyak took just 16 minutes to announce his arrival with the goal that set Fulham on course for a well-deserved victory over Stoke.

Fulham’s deadline day acquisition from Stuttgart, who trained with his new team-mates for the first time 48 hours before the match following the granting of a work permit, finished crisply from 15 yards

Clint Dempsey supplied Fulham’s second, 12 minutes later, though it was credited as an own goal for Stoke goalkeeper Thomas Sorensen.

Although Ryan Shawcross halved the deficit 12 minutes from the end, there was no way back for Stoke, who slipped to their fourth successive league defeat.

Pogrebnyak’s big moment came after he had already made a bright, industrious start. He gathered John Arne Riise’s driven ball into the penalty area, took one touch and unleashed an unstoppable drive high into the net.

The Moscow-born 28-year-old, who arrived at Craven Cottage on a six-month deal, made his name with Spartak Moscow and also had a Russian-title winning spell with Zenit St Petersburg.

Bobby Zamora may no longer be part of life on the banks of the Thames, following his switch to Queens Park Rangers, but Pogrebnyak was an instant hit with the fans.

With Danny Murphy and Mousa Dembele controlling midfield, Fulham were in the ascendancy and confirmation of their superiority came in the 28th minute. Dempsey powered a 35-yard missile that Sorensen managed to tip on to his crossbar, only for the ball to rebound on to his shoulder and drop over the line.

The Stoke goalkeeper enjoyed better reward just before half-time, blocking a close-range effort from Damien Duff, who had been picked out by Murphy’s free-kick.

The visitors showed steady improvement after the break, and Matthew Upson should have found the target from Glenn Whelan’s free-kick, Shawcross glanced home Jermaine Pennant’s 78th-minute corner but Fulham held firrm through the closing stages.

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