Belfast Telegraph

Monday 29 December 2014

Jol proud of Fulham recovery

Clint Dempsey (left) and Martin Jol
Clint Dempsey (left) and Martin Jol

Fulham manager Martin Jol was proud of his side's turnaround in the win against Newcastle.

Fulham deservedly fell behind to a superb Danny Guthrie long-range drive but Jol's half-time pep talk and tactical tweak proved inspired. Danny Murphy and Bobby Zamora netted penalties either side of a Clint Dempsey brace as Fulham ran the Magpies ragged, with Dempsey having the final word by firing home his third at the end of the 5-2 victory.

"You can explain everything. The first half we knew that we had to be a threat in behind [Mike] Williamson and [Fabricio] Coloccini, but we never did that," said Jol.

"We couldn't exploit our extra man in midfield and in the second half it was different because we decided to play a more direct style. That caused them more problems. The first half was sort of Brixton, the second half was a holiday in Jamaica. It was an unbelievable difference."

Jol was quick to praise the performance of Dempsey after the match as he racked up his second hat-trick in as many games at Craven Cottage. The treble was the United States international's first in the Barclays Premier League and showed why he was on Friday named his country's player of the year.

"Clint Dempsey is our top scorer," Jol added. "He is a wide player and our top scorer. He is doing what he does best. Clint scores goals and if he can score 12 goals this year and some other players do we will be fine."

While Dempsey will rightly take the plaudits, Newcastle manager Alan Pardew pinpointed the game-changing moment as Murphy's equaliser. Damien Duff was adjudged to have been brought down inside the box by Davide Santon, much the to the disappointment of the Magpies boss.

"I thought the contact was minimal and certainly the only contact that did take place was on the edge of the box," Pardew said.

"But it got given and we have to accept that, it was just our reaction to that goal which was the disappointing factor today for us.

"Whether we felt any injustice for the penalty or an injustice that they happened to be level with us, I don't know. We kind of just switched off in that period and it cost us three more goals and then we were in trouble."

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