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MATCH REPORT

PUBLISHED
17:11 4th April 2010

REPORT: FULHAM 2 LATICS 1

Defensive errors cost Latics despite Scotland's first strike

FULHAM 2
Okaka 47
Hangeland 58

WIGAN ATHLETIC 1
Scotland 34

Report by Paul Chialton

1-0 up and toasting Jason Scotland's first league goal things were looking good for Latics at half-time, but defensive errors shortly after the break gifted the home side two goals and, more importantly, three points.

It was in fact a game littered with mistakes by both defences and the longer proceedings went on the more apparent it became that the result would be determined on the opposition's ability to take advantage.

Latics did just that after the half-hour mark with Marcelo Moreno cleverly heading down to Scotland on the edge of the area, and the striker striking left-footed into the back of the net. Despite the result it's a big plus for Scotland, having waiting so long and now with a taste for scoring going into the final games of the season.

Fulham were unable to create many clear-cut chances, intent instead on giving possession away to the sharp Momo Diame and James McCarthy. Both are developing a good understanding of each other in the centre and impressed again today.

However, the damage was down after just 13 minutes of the restart. First Zoltan Gera capitalised upon Paul Scharner's error to square for Stefano Okaka, on for just two minutes, to slip home.

Shortly after Brede Hangeland rose unmarked inside the area to head home a Simon Davies corner and put the home side ahead. Disappointing that the centre-half was neither tracked, or that there was no-one guarding the back-post to clear the danger.

To be fair Latics responded well and continued to look comfortable in possession, the introduction of Victor Moses doing much to inspire this. But that cutting-edge and bit of ruthlessness was missing to make Fulham's unconvincing back-line pay and Roberto Martinez's side ended the game with nothing.

A tough result to take then in the end, given that neither really dominated enough to thoroughly deserve the win, but a result that makes the upcoming home-game against Portsmouth even more important than it already was.

Latics: Kirkland; Melchiot, Bramble, Scharner, Figueroa; Diame, McCarthy; N'Zogbia (Watson), Scotland (Moses), Rodallega; Moreno (Sinclair)

Subs: Stojkovic, Amaya, Gohouri, Watson, Gomez, Sinclair, Moses

Fulham; Schwarzer; Elm (Okaka, 46 (Nevland)), Hangeland, Hughes, Konchesky; Davies, Murphy (Baird), Etuhu, Duff; Gera, Dempsey

Subs: Zuberbuhler, Baird, Shorey, Smalling, Greening, Okaka, Nevland
    Data provided by Press Association