- Norwich vs Fulham

Thursday 26 December 2013 | Carrow Road | Referee: Jonathan Moss | Attendance 26,811

Norwich
  • Gary Hooper (13)
Norwich
1 - 2
Fulham
  • Pajtim Kasami (33)
  • Scott Parker (87)
Fulham

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Match report

For match photos, scroll to photostream above left. Click on the statistics tab for match stats. Scroll down for manager reactions; press conferences to follow below.

A late Scott Parker strike handed Fulham a boost in the club's battle to secure Barclays Premier League safety as Rene Meulensteen's side triumphed 2-1 at Norwich City.

Gary Hooper scored for the fourth consecutive Premier League home match to give Norwich a 13th-minute lead as his shot struck Aaron Hughes and deceived David Stockdale in the Fulham goal.

The visitors generally had the better chances for the rest of the first period and, although Parker saw a goal disallowed for handball, Meulensteen's men were level in the 33rd minute thanks to Pajtim Kasami's free-kick.

Damien Duff and Hooper spurned further chances in the first period, but the match remained level.

Both teams looked set for a point apiece, only for Parker to fire in an unstoppable strike with less than five minutes remaining to move Fulham on to 16 points, but the London club remain inside the bottom three on goal difference. Norwich, meanwhile, are three points clear of the relegation zone.

Norwich drew 0-0 at Sunderland on Saturday and manager Chris Hughton named the same team for Fulham's visit, while goalkeeper Maarten Stekelenburg's absence with injury was the most notable of Fulham’s five alterations.

Aside from a long-range Kasami shot, the opening stages were tight, but the match did liven up in the 13th minute as Norwich broke the deadlock.

Hooper found himself in space just outside the Fulham area and relied on a huge slice of luck as his shot deflected off Hughes before looping over the helpless Stockdale.

Fulham had a 32nd-minute equaliser disallowed after Parker charged down John Ruddy's clearance and blocked the ball into the goal with his arm, but the visitors were celebrating for real little more than 60 seconds later.

Kasami stepped up to take a free-kick just outside the Norwich area and slotted his effort through the wall into the bottom-right corner of the net.

Norwich began the second half much better than they ended the first and went agonisingly close to retaking the lead in the 53rd minute, but Sascha Riether cleared Leroy Fer's header off the line.

Hugo Rodallega almost bundled the ball over the line at the back post with 12 minutes remaining only for Ruddy to keep it out but the England goalkeeper could do nothing about Parker’s late winner as the midfielder blasted a stunning strike into the net from 20 yards.

Norwich City manager Chris Hughton: “We didn't make the most of our opportunities. I am really disappointed not to come away with a result.

"It is a concern when you do not get the result you feel you deserved. Lack of goals for Johan Elmander is a concern as you want to be scoring goals throughout the team but he does give us a work-rate off the front.

"It is hard to play with two strikers up the park these days. Elmander's role has helped enable Gary Hooper to get the goals he has in recent weeks."

Fulham manager Rene Meulensteen: "We have worked so hard in all the previous games but this was a game we were looking to get points on the board.

"I cannot fault the players for their resilience and character. We need to start getting clean sheets, which we didn't get, but I asked for one in the second half.

"People keep reminding us about our position, we don't want to be there. If we keep these performances going, we will climb up steadily."

Fan Rating

- rate the player performances for this match

Line-up All Fans BFR
1. John Ruddy - 4.92
23. Martin Olsson - 4.57
5. Sébastien Bassong - 4.3
6. Michael Turner - 4.37
3. Steven Whittaker - 4.91
22. Nathan Redmond - 5.16
7. Robert Snodgrass - 5.54
10. Leroy Fer - 4.84
4. Bradley Johnson - 4.23
16. Johan Elmander - 4.64
11. Gary Hooper - 4.78
Substitutes All Fans BFR
14. Wes Hoolahan - 4.19
13. Mark Bunn - 2.4
31. Josh Murphy - 3.11
24. Ryan Bennett - 4.11
19. Luciano Becchio - 1.95
9. Ricky van Wolfswinkel - 5.93
2. Russell Martin - 4.26
Line-up All Fans BFR
13. David Stockdale 3.5 3.96
35. Fernando Amorebieta 3.0 3.6
27. Sascha Riether 3.5 4.77
15. Kieran Richardson 3.0 4.21
18. Aaron Hughes 2.5 4.1
11. Alexander Kacaniklic 3.0 4.24
28. Scott Parker 4.5 4.69
16. Damien Duff 2.5 4.29
8. Pajtim Kasami 4.0 5.19
7. Steve Sidwell 4.0 4.92
19. Adel Taarabt 3.5 5.32
Substitutes All Fans BFR
3. John Arne Riise 3.0 4.68
24. Ashkan Dejagah 8.5 4.66
10. Bryan Ruiz 0.0 4.39
39. Darren Bent 0.0 5.68
40. Marcus Bettinelli 5.0 2.75
20. Hugo Rodallega 3.0 4.11
23. Derek Boateng 0.0 4.23

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