Cottagers outclassed as Juve on the brink

FULHAM’S hopes of a fairytale place in the quarter-finals of the Europa League were left hanging by a thread last night as European heavyweights Juventus outclassed Roy Hodgson’s side at the Stadio Olimpico.

The Cottagers struggled for possession in the first half and went 2-0 down within 30 minutes thanks to goals from Nicola Legrottaglie and Jonathan Zebina.

Dickson Etuhu pulled one back but Hodgson’s men always looked second best and David Trezeguet’s sharp third goal emphasised the gulf in class between the two sides.

The Old Lady, currently fifth in Serie A, began with a fluid passing game and Mark Schwarzer soon found his goal under attack when he reacted well to tip Trezeguet’s goal-bound strike around his left hand post.

The Australian was beaten seconds later though as Legrottaglie found his way through a packed penalty box to power a close range header past the keeper from the resulting corner.

Fulham tried to respond but Juve looked menacing and their second showed the quality in their ranks even if there were more question marks over the visitors’ defending.

After good work by Antonio Candreva, who held the ball up on the edge of the area, Zebina rode Davies’ weak challenge and slammed an unstoppable shot that flew past Schwarzer and went in off the far post.

Fulham top scorer Bobby Zamora looked frustrated and isolated up front but he won the free-kick that put the Cottagers momentarily back in the tie. Davies whipped a free-kick on the edge of the box after a foul on the former Spurs hitman and the ball fell to Etuhu who slotted the ball.

However Juve went 3-1 ahead when Trezeguet fired past the Fulham stopper.

l Last night’s Europa League results: Atletico Madrid 0 Sporting Lisbon 0, Hamburg 3 Anderlecht 1, Lille 1 Liverpool 0, Rubin Kazan 1 Wolfsburg 1, Benfica 1 Marseille 1, Juventus 3 Fulham 1, Panathinaikos 1 Standard Liege 3, Valencia 1 Werder Bremen 1.

JUVENTUS: Manninger, Zebina, Cannavaro, Legrottaglie, Grosso, Salihamidzic (Camoranesi 46), Poulsen (Sissoko 75), Marchisio, Candreva, Diego, Trezeguet (Iaquinta 62).

FULHAM: Schwarzer, Baird, Hangeland, Hughes, Konchesky, Duff, Davies (Dempsey 60), Etuhu, Greening, Gera, Zamora.

Referee: Florian Meyer (Germany).

More in this section

Sport Push Notifications

By clicking on 'Sign Up' you will be the first to know about our latest and best sporting content on this browser.

Sign Up

Latest news from the world of sport, along with the best in opinion from our outstanding team of sports writers

Sign up
Cookie Policy Privacy Policy FAQ Help Contact Us Terms and Conditions

© Irish Examiner Ltd