LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 02: Clint Dempsey of Fulham celebrates as he scores their first goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Fulham and West Ham United at Craven Cottage on May 2, 2010 in London, England. (Photo by Jamie McDonald/Getty Images)
Fulham beat West Ham yesterday 3 - 2 at Craven Cottage. Roy Hodgson sat out many players yesterday. It was a similar lineup to the team that played against Everton a week ago. The team played well especially in the second half. They deserved this victory. With Fulham's huge victory on Thursday I would understand Fulham really having a hard time getting the victory. This club continues to surprise me. As usual I am going back and looking at my " keys" to the game. Maybe some of my "keys" were factors in the match? Below is an analysis of "my 5 keys to victory for Fulham against West Ham."
1. How many players will Roy Hodgson rest for this match? Roy Hodgson did rest many players yesterday. It didn't matter, because the players who played did their job once again. Last week, Fulham put out a similar side at Everton. That team deserved a point. In the Wet Ham match this team definitely deserved the victory. I was hoping players like Kagish Dikgacoi and Bjorn Helge Riise would play yesterday. Not only did they play, but I thought they were very effective. Riise has shown the ability to really send in some good crosses. He also is effective on corner kicks. Dikgacoi also was solid. This key was a non - factor yesterday.
2. Stefano Okaka needs to score or contribute to a goal tomorrow. Well, I was looking for some production from Okaka. He did score a goal in the second half. He came on as a substitute in the second half. In these last 2 league games I hope he plays more. I think the potential is there for him to be a good player.
3. Fulham need to defend set pieces well tomorrow. West Ham scored on a set piece. It was off of a free kick that Carlton Cole headed his goal into the net. Fulham had just gone up by two goals in the second half. A few minutes later, Fulham gave up this goal. They just need to do better off of set pieces. Was this "key" a factor in the match? The answer to that question is yes. Allowing the goal kept West Ham in the match throughout the second half. This key to the match unfortunately was a negative factor in this game.
4. Fulham need to contain the West Ham's strikers. For the most part, the Fulham back four contained Carlton Cole. He can be dangerous and was active in this match. Baird and Smalling did a nice job yesterday.
5. Clint Dempsey also needs to be involved in goal scoring opportunities. I guess this was an important key to the match. Clint Dempsey played very well yesterday. He scored a goal in the last minute of the first half. His goal was very important in the victory yesterday. He stepped up once again when the club needed him. He also had a great shot on net in the first half that hit the crossbar. His effort was a "key" to this victory yesterday.
This was a well deserved victory for Fulham yesterday. I think my "keys"involving Clint Dempsey and Stefano Okaka were factors yesterday. Overall, I was just impressed by how well this team performed especially in the second half. It is now on to Wednesday's game against Stoke at Craven Cottage. It would be nice if Fulham can get a victory in their last home game of the season.