By Dave Craven
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A fine win for Roy Hodgson and Fulham against Harry Redknapp’s revitalised Tottenham Hotspur gave The Whites an all important three points and moved them up the Premier League table to a heady ninth with 17 points.
Fulham took the bull by the horns from the outset and began to apply pressure on a Tottenham defence who, before the arrival of Redknapp from Portsmouth, had regularly been at sixes and sevens.
Danny Murphy and Andrew Johnson both had good chances to open the scoring and then Clint Dempsey made the visiting keeper Gomes pull off a great save and managed to keep the score level at 0-0.
Spurs hung on until the 33rd minute and it was former Spurs midfielder Simon Davies who scored the opening goal when his fierce shot was inadvertently mis-headed towards the goal and Gomes could only fumble the ball and look on helplessly as it crossed the line.
With the Tottenham back four and their goalkeeper’s confidence shot to pieces, Fulham continued to put high balls into their area in order to capitalise on the disarray that was the visitors were patently under.
Although they were fortunate to reach halftime just a goal down, it was only a matter of time before Fulham scored their second and it came in the 70th minute through Johnson. After the ball was sent in to the area it went loose and it was the England striker who was first to react and bundle it home from six yards.
With nothing else left to do, Spurs pushed forward in numbers to try to grab a goal back and their hard work succeeded with nine minutes remaining when Campbell pulled the score back to 2-1 but although there were some tension filled moments before the final whistle went, there was only ever going to be one winner.
Following the game, manager Roy Hodgson said: “It was one of best performances of the season, the way we set about them going forward. Our front two were up against two quality centre-halves but I thought we caused them problems throughout.”
He added: "But over the 90 minutes, the way we played and the amount of pressure we put on the Spurs defence, I don't think we've got any reason to do other than pat ourselves on the back and to claim the victory."
Fulham: Schwarzer, Pantsil, Hughes, Hangeland, Konchesky, Dempsey (Gera 87), Murphy, Bullard (Andreasen 90), Davies, Johnson, Zamora
Subs Not Used: Zuberbuhler, Nevland, Gray, Kallio, Baird
Goals: Davies 33, Johnson 70
Tottenham: Gomes, Corluka, Woodgate, King, Bale, Bentley, Jenas, Huddlestone (Pavlyuchenko 45), Zokora, Modric (Lennon 45), Bent (Campbell 71)
Subs Not Used: Cesar, Hutton, Dawson, Assou-Ekotto
Goals: Campbell 81
Ref: Alan Wiley (Staffordshire)
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