Belfast Telegraph

Fulham pile misery on Bolton

Bryan Ruiz's exquisite effort helped Fulham to a deserved 2-0 victory against bottom club Bolton in the Barclays Premier League.

The Cottagers looked desperate to get over the disappointment of crashing out of the Europa League in midweek, attacking in numbers from the outset.

Clint Dempsey headed home Fulham's first after connecting with a cross from Ruiz, who 66 seconds later superbly lifted the ball over Jussi Jaaskelainen to extend the home side's advantage.

Andrew Johnson stepped into the Fulham line-up after Bobby Zamora failed a late test on a knee injury, while Bolton made three changes from the side beaten 2-1 by Aston Villa.

Fulham midfielder Dickson Etuhu's early error allowed Nigel Reo-Coker to flash a shot across goal and Johnson went close after a neat one-two with Dempsey.

Danny Murphy saw a superb volley deflected wide and Zat Knight blocked Johnson's close-range shot. Darren Pratley went close from 20 yards during a rare Wanderers attack, before Jaaskelainen turned wide John Arne Riise's drive at the other end.

Dempsey opened the scoring when he beat Dedryck Boyata to Ruiz's superb right-wing cross to head home. And Fulham immediately doubled their advantage thanks to a moment of magic from Ruiz.

The Costa Rica international was put through on goal by Dempsey after outpacing Marcos Alonso and he delightfully scooped the ball over the onrushing Jaaskelainen.

Bolton manager Coyle brought on Gretar Steinsson and Chris Eagles at the interval but Fulham continued to press and Dempsey came agonisingly close to directing home Johnson's cross.

Bolton looked desperate for a goal and, although Eagles and Fabrice Muamba got efforts away, their exertions left gaping holes at the back. Johnson and Moussa Dembele almost capitalised as Fulham hunted for a third, which proved elusive as the home side ran out winners.


From Belfast Telegraph