Fulham 5, Norwich City 0

Anthony Pilkington and Wes Hoolahan prepare to kick off after Norwich City concede a fifth at Fulham. Anthony Pilkington and Wes Hoolahan prepare to kick off after Norwich City concede a fifth at Fulham.

Saturday, August 18, 2012
4:50 PM

Norwich City slumped to a heavy defeat at Craven Cottage this afternoon as the Chris Hughton era started with a whimper.

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The Canaries were well beaten by a classy Fulham side that mercilessly reminded City’s travelling contingent of the task facing them to survive in the Premier League once again.

Damien Duff got the ball rolling for Martin Jol’s men with a cool finish after the City back four had been caught sleeping and they doubled their lead thanks to a Mladen Petric header before half-time.

The Croatian made it 3-0 early in the second period when his long range effort took a wicked deflection off Michael Turner to leave John Ruddy helpless. But the goal of the afternoon came when a flowing move involving Petric and Moussa Dembele ended with Alex Kacaniklic sliding past Ruddy.

Norwich’s misery was complete in the 85th minute when Michael Turner brought down Hugo Rodallega and substitute Steve Sidwell hammered home the penalty.

Andrew Surman was the surprise inclusion in Chris Hughton’s starting XI with the former Wolves man charged with being the link man between midfield and lone striker Grant Holt.

Anthony Pilkington and Robert Snodgrass flanked Holt from the left and right respectively but it was clear from early on that they were going to have to adopt a defensive brief as Fulham piled forward in the first period.

The danger signs were there in the 10th minute when Alex Kacaniklic skipped past Russell Martin down the left hand side and stood up an inviting cross to the back post. Fortunately for City, his opposite winger Duff had not gambled on the cross and Tierney was able to head clear.

City constantly gifted possession back to Fulham in the opening 15 minutes and Holt cut a lonely figure up front, trying to feed off long diagonal balls with little support.

Michael Turner got caught ball watching in the 12th minute allowing Duff to latch on to Brede Hangeland’s ball over the top but the former Sunderland man recovered well to snuff out the danger.

City had their first and only real chance of the half shortly after when Holt’s deft flick played in Surman behind the Fulham back four. The midfielder never looked comfortable on his right foot though and his hesitation cut the angle down on him allowing Schwarzer to make a routine save at his near post.

Watching England manager Roy Hodgson would have been unimpressed by John Ruddy’s clearance in the 18th minute as it went straight to Bryan Ruiz but the Chilean lofted his effort over the crossbar under pressure from Turner.

Ruddy made up for this aberration midway through the half though when the increasingly influential John Arne Riise got in behind Robert Snodgrass and Russell Martin but his left-footed effort was saved well by the legs of the England international.

It was one-way traffic and only a matter of time before the Canaries’ resistance was finally breached and so it proved in the 26th minute. Riise’s long diagonal ball bisected the City defence and as Tierney vainly appealed for offside Duff was able to poke the ball past Ruddy.

Snodgrass had a 25-yard free-kick sail over the bar but Fulham looked the more likely to add to their lead and four minutes before the break City’s task became even harder.

Ryan Bennett made an excellent saving tackle just as Ruiz was about to pull the trigger but from the resulting corner Petric headed home despite the best efforts of Jonny Howson on the line.

It almost got worse for City before the break but Ruddy did well to tip Ruiz’s free-kick over the bar.

• Half-time: Fulham 2, Norwich City 0

Steve Morison came on for Surman at the start of the second half but it was effectively game over nine minutes into the second period as Petric grabbed his second of the afternoon.

The summer signing from Hamburg picked up the ball 25 yards from goal and after not being closed down his left-footed strike deflected off Turner and flew past Ruddy.

Snodgrass was immediately substituted with Elliott Bennett asked to shore up the right flank which had proved such a profitable attacking outlet for the Londoners.

It made little difference though and in the 66th minute it was 4-0 to Fulham after a lovely move. Dembele toyed with the Canaries on the edge of the box before feeding Petric, whose gorgeous flick played in Kacaniklic, who fired past Ruddy.

City almost pulled one back immediately with a long range effort from Bradley Johnson but Schwarzer scrambled the midfielder’s effort away with his legs.

Kacaniklic could have got his second late on after fine work down the left by Riise but his left-footed effort was deflected wide.

Fulham got the fifth their dominance deserved in the dying embers of the game when Turner brought down Rodallega inside the area and Sidwell rammed home the penalty.

• Norwich City (4-4-1-1): Ruddy, R Martin, R Bennett, Turner, Tierney, Pilkington, Howson, Johnson, Surman (Morison, 45), Snodgrass (E Bennett, 55), Holt (Hoolahan, 77). Subs not used: Rudd, Vaughan, Lappin, Barnett.

• Fulham (4-5-1): Schwarzer, Riether, Hughes, Hangeland, Riise, Ruiz (Sidwell, 81), Diarra, Dembele, Duff (Kasami, 75), Kacaniklic, Petric (Rodallega, 67). Subs not used: Stockdale, Kelly, Baird, Halliche.

• Goals: Fulham: Duff (26), Petric (41, 54), Kacaniklic (66), Sidwell (pen, 87)

• Bookings: None

• Referee: Michael Oliver (Northumberland)

• Attendance: 25,062

49 comments

  • Weird formation and odd choice of personnel to deploy in it. Surman "in the hole"? Whatever that bit of Footygibberish really means. Pitbull fit enough to be on the bench but not given the chance to bite a few lumps out of the Fulham defence. Pilks & Snods IN defence. Jol must have been terrified when he saw that formation. Not.

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    Mad Brewer

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • It`s time to let Pitbull off his leash. He`s no help to Holty sitting in his kennel. A few years ago a certain Mr. Earnshaw used to warm the bench while Worthy`s Wonders ground out 7 whole points from a season`s away games. No more of that sort of stuff, please, Hoots. Pretty please. That was an abysmal performance. 37 more games to go..... Happy Hansen is predicting a score-draw versus QPR next week. 7 - 7. Quite droll for the jolly jock!

    Report this comment

    Mad Brewer

    Sunday, August 19, 2012

  • Same rubbish as Hull pre season. Holt isolated no support, needs Vaughan up there with him. 4 - 4 - 2 with Pilks. johnson, Snodgrass and Bennett across midfield. Holt + Vaughan up front.

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    tunsteadtiger

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • I made my first trip to Fulham’s ALL SEATER stadium and bought tickets for SEATS. On the hottest day of the year, my wife and I were unable to stand for long periods and therefore missed the entire first half and much of the second half, as Norwich fans refused all requests to sit down. I expect the crowd to jump up at key moments of the game, as do I, but to stand for most of the game ruined it for those who could not. I watched my first game at Carrow Road in 1962 and have always respected Canary followers, but yesterday was a selfish display, led by the so called die-hard supporters, with no thought for others. The stewards were ineffectual, but that is no excuse. Thanks for ruining the start of my 50th season as a supporter!

    Report this comment

    Russianality

    Sunday, August 19, 2012

  • CH a good appointment ha ha ha ha! What a laugh (not)!

    Report this comment

    JJE

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • Hoolahan and Howson are superior to Snodgrass as attacking midfielders and have a good understanding with Holt. we needed something more creative after we went 2 down and Hoolahan could have done that. Why not put Snodgrass on the wing where he is most at home and keep Hoolahan and Howson in the game? At least this result came now and Hughton can have a bit of a rethink. He tried something, it didn't work. We will only have to worry if he sticks with the same game plan next week.

    Report this comment

    NrflkM

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • My son's 12th birthday treat - what a disaster!! Thank goodness we proudly have John Ruddy - they just kept passing the ball backwards as if not quite sure what to do next. Have a feeling this may be a more difficult season and Mr Hughton has a lot to learn. Things can only get better!! OTBC x

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    CANARY-CRUISE-GIRL

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • Whoops.....couldn't get a ticket to the Villa game but got one for this through the club, looks like I'm your lucky mascot!! Still, good game, good goals.

    Report this comment

    MonkeyNuts

    Sunday, August 19, 2012

  • Just got back (after a tiring night with a rather well to do young lady called Sophie!) what an absolutely embarrassing performance that was. We could be heading for an all time points low this season. The get hammered by one of the favourites for relegation just goes to show how far Mr Whooton has dragged this club down following the departure of the legendary Mr Lambert. We were hopeless, we are hopeless and we will undoubtedly continue to be hopeless. Ged NCFC Superman, Superfan and Ladies Man.

    Report this comment

    Ged Steroo

    Sunday, August 19, 2012

  • I hope this doesn't come across too negative for me to be easily mistaken for my fellow billy, however this possession focus of our pre season almost seems to have been in vain, we couldn't keep the ball for any substantial time and that allowed Fulham to just keep on knocking, until eventually the flood gates opened. I don't agree with this 4-4-1-1 either, Holt looks so isolated and we seem to have more than capable partners for him in Simeon and Vaughan for that not to be an issue. Attack can at times be the best form of defence and that's how we did so well before, by not trying to hold them off but to catch them out. It's worrying how we don't seem to have any ideas, but hey, when do we ever start brilliantly?! Hopefully this is our true kick up the backside.

    Report this comment

    Billy

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • Oh dear, oh dear. Slow, not on the same wave length, thought that they would get more time on the ball. Reminds me of last season when we were far too slow, gave away pens and lost the ball. A lot of self assessment needed. Elliott Bennett looked good!!!!

    Report this comment

    Lobbo

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • plan B Mr houghton please . plan A didnt work

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    wivenhoebudgie

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • Glad we concentrated on bolstering our defence before this season began. I think I'll wait for the QPR match before running onto the pitch and tearing up my season ticket though.

    Report this comment

    bogbog

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • I thought my pre-season trip to Hull was disappointing, but today's performance was bad. 22 players on the pitch, but only one team: Unfortunately that was Fulham. Some hard work by some individual Norwich players didn't make up for the poor overall effort. We just didn't get into the game. It's going to be a hard week at Colney, but at least work on bringing back the team performances of the last three seasons - and quickly please. We need to do much better against QPR.

    Report this comment

    Robin Hood

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • I thought my pre-season trip to Hull was disappointing, but today's performance was bad. 22 players on the pitch, but only one team: Unfortunately that was Fulham. Some hard work by some individual Norwich players didn't make up for the poor overall effort. We just didn't get into the game. It's going to be a hard week at Colney, but at least work on bringing back the team performances of the last three seasons - and quickly please. We need to do much better against QPR.

    Report this comment

    Robin Hood

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • Alas my doppelganger shows his lack of erudition - R-O-E-D-E-R

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    billythefleeceyoudrybookie

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • How long has your right hand been called sophie Ged? crawl back under your rock at the suffolk county tip and give us all some peace!

    Report this comment

    Captain

    Sunday, August 19, 2012

  • It's all about how the team recovers from this. There are always shockers at the start of the season, look at Arsenal last year, but it needs fixing and quick. What happened to our attacking midfield that could always pull a rabbit out the hat?

    Report this comment

    Swiss Canary

    Sunday, August 19, 2012

  • The most worrying thing about this for me was Mr. Hughton's post match interview. I heard him say that Fulham have better players than we do, therefore we had to stop them playing. If he's been telling the players that they aren't as good as Fulham, heaven help us. Last season was built on self belief and bravery.

    Report this comment

    MartinL

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • I think we're going to learn a little bit more about Mr Hughton

    Report this comment

    Lobbo

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • Just got back from the game. Saw my nigh on namesake waving the black and white flag. Unfortunately we only waved the white one. Things can only get better. OTBC

    Report this comment

    Ded Sterile

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • If the QPR match produces a result similar to this, I fear CH will bring us similar success (?!) as BG did as Manager! And maybe suffer a similar departure! Hopefully not though, but it will be interesting to see how we stand after 5 or 6 more matches.

    Report this comment

    Surrey Canary

    Sunday, August 19, 2012

  • DOOMED. Whatever else did we expect ? Got lucky with PL, now it's back to to reality.

    Report this comment

    graham garrod

    Sunday, August 19, 2012

  • The fundamental difference is PL had a plot understood his players and always attacked. Looking at today CH will take us down particularly with statements like " you don't go to a place like Fulham and attack........." God help us!

    Report this comment

    JJE

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • Of course, Ged was referring to his own embarrassing performance, with Sophie, lady of the night...Ged, I hope she didn't over charge, mate...since it was such a short performance on your part? ;)

    Report this comment

    Norfolk'n'good

    Sunday, August 19, 2012

  • There was no cohesion in the team, drive was missing and it was at times like a team playing together for the first time. Fulham was always going to be a defeat, tradition and all that, but it was the manner and the seeming lack of plan B. Holt was too isolated, we were not making the passes and awareness was not there. Next week now becomes the traditional 6 pointer and it is only the second game of the season! I hope the fans give 100% backing at home and hope the team gels. OTBC

    Report this comment

    Singapore Canary

    Sunday, August 19, 2012

  • Under Lambert we had bad games, remember Sunderland and Blackburn away? we were terrible then. I'm looking ahead to QPR and if we haven't improved I will start to feel worried.

    Report this comment

    ImDrunky

    Sunday, August 19, 2012

  • It's pretty standard for norwich fans to be standing at away games, Russianality, so I would stick to carrow road for the rest of the season. It's not my preference either, just one of those things. Sometimes stewards do get everyone to sit, but not often, and if people in front are standing you have no choice unless you want to miss the action. Although yesterday that may have been a blessing.

    Report this comment

    a fine city

    Sunday, August 19, 2012

  • His substitutions were clueless.

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    irongloves

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • At least we can stop fretting about being too defensive! Hey-ho. 37 games to go.... Too early to pull the emergency chain.

    Report this comment

    Mad Brewer

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • Definately need Vaughan up front with Grant, Only 3 shots on goal in 90 mins. Pathetic.

    Report this comment

    goldie

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • Roader OUT !!!

    Report this comment

    billythebookie

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • That display was so bad, that the only way has to be up. There were no bright points to build on. Mr Nice Guy Hughton has to discover some steel, and dare I say it, flair!. Dont forget......QPR come here next week looking to get over THEIR 5-0 stuffing!!! Should be interesting................................................. Also be interesting to watch Norwich in the transfer market, next week!!

    Report this comment

    Algarve Canary

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • JMH

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • Since when did we ever not get beat at Fulham? Don't get me wrong, it's a horrible start to the season, but I had this down as a comfortable home win from the moment the fixture list came out. Chins up, and let's start the season proper at Carrow Road next week.

    Report this comment

    Saturday Skin

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • Notice this page attracts a derth of persons who hate City, no doubt they will disappear as the results improve, perhaps these people should find a team to support. Silly me forgot they were morons!

    Report this comment

    goldie

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • I'm afraid to say that I thought the problem was fundamentally strategic far more than any individual's performance.

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    NrflkM

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • Painful to watch... Brings back bad memories. We can't play one up front like that. Holt's feeders ( snods and pilks ) spent most of their time in our half with the defenders, totally isolating the striker. Bad tactical error, but let's hope a lot was learnt from that, and Houghton has a re-think. OTBC!

    Report this comment

    Norfolk'n'good

    Sunday, August 19, 2012

  • I guess the dissappointment comes from seeing the same game plan rolled out as in our pre-season fixtures which didn't really work. I do however have faith in Hughton. He is not just a one trick pony and we have some flexibility in the squad to be able to try something different next week.

    Report this comment

    NrflkM

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • Disgraceful! Come on then let's wait for all the excuses for CH!!!! We will go down no doubt about that.

    Report this comment

    JJE

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • First, Russianality, that boorish and ignorant behaviour is, sadly, par for the course. Second, WHY is trollery so prevalent? THIRD, I`ve revised my prediction based on sound statistical evidence; Played 38. Won 0. Drawn 0. Lost 38. Goals for 0. Against 190. Position 19th QPR bottom on alphabetical order). FACT.

    Report this comment

    Mad Brewer

    Sunday, August 19, 2012

  • Under Lambert we went out to win every game ,play defensive boring football look what happens ! How many videos of last season did Chris H watch !

    Report this comment

    spark

    Sunday, August 19, 2012

  • The part that worries me most is that just about every critic,newspaper sport reporter etc, are saying that Fulham looked good and that City were only there to make up the numbers after a bright opening 10 minutes. Just put it down to a bad day at the office, but should we manage to repeat this non event we could be in for a long season

    Report this comment

    wivenhoebudgie

    Sunday, August 19, 2012

  • 1. We always do bad away at Fulham and 2. We never win our opening game. But the 4.5.1 formation doesn't work, it's too negative. I'm not panicking yet, but I'm hoping for improvements against QPR.

    Report this comment

    ImDrunky

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • We all have a right to an opinion Goldie and looking at the majority views people are not happy and have a right to express it - get over it!

    Report this comment

    JJE

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • It's not right to start comparing him to lambert after his first league game in charge... Lambert left, he's gone, and we need to get over it..

    Report this comment

    Norfolk'n'good

    Sunday, August 19, 2012

  • Er, Ged Steroo, what was the "absolutely embarrassing performance" you refer to - the football or the "..tiring night with a rather well to do young lady called Sophie" !

    Report this comment

    Surrey Canary

    Sunday, August 19, 2012

  • Michael Turners must be one of the worst debuts ever. Otherwise we have way to many coloured boots on the pitch, a worrying sign that some of our players think they have made it, aka big time charlies!

    Report this comment

    Cap Canary

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

  • Goldie - I am a lifelong Norwich City supporter, a season ticket holder and I will be there next Saturday BUT............ That was the worst Norwich City performance in more than three years - there can be no excuses - no passing the buck - it was pure and utter 'headless chicken' rubbish!!

    Report this comment

    Mel Lacey

    Sunday, August 19, 2012

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

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