Going into this match the talk was who would Roy Hogdson rest for this match? Bobby Zamora was the only Fulham player of note that was rested today. This game was about two completely different halves of football. The first half saw Wigan leading at the half 1 - 0. Fulham owned the second half with 2 goals. The game ended with Fulham winning the match at Craven Cottage 2 - 1.
The first half saw some good action from both sides. However, it was Wigan who controlled the ball more. Fulham did have the first chance of the game. In the 5th minute Zoltan Gera's diving header is saved by Kirkland. His header came off from a pass from Damien Duff. In the 15th minute, David Elm got off a nice strike but is was also saved by Kirkland.
After a few opportunities by Fulham it was obvious that Wigan were starting to get control of the match. They were starting to put pressure on Fulham. In the 28th minute a header by Scharner off of a corner kick just goes high over the net. In the 31st minute a flick by Scharner goes over Schwarzer, but is headed away by Hangeland.
All of this pressure led to the first goal of the match. In the 34th minute, Moreno gave a nice pass to Jason Scotland who struck it past Mark Schwarzer. Wigan were now ahead 1 - 0. You could see this coming as Wigan were controlling the ball for several minutes.
Fulham had some possession as the half was coming to an end. In the 38th minute a shot by David Elm just goes high. Fulham were putting pressure on Wigan , but could not get the equalizer in the first half. The half ends with Wigan leading 1 - 0.
The second half began with a substitution. Stefano Okaka was brought in to replace David Elm at Striker. I was actually hoping Okaka would play the entire match. Based on his effort in the second half, I am hoping he will see more playing time.
In the 47h minute, a lovely pass from Zoltan Gera inside the box found Stefano Okaka. He flicked the pass by Kirkland, and suddenly the game was now tied. The second half had barely begun, and the score was now 1 - 1.
Wigan would respond with some nice pressure of their own. This was highlighted by a Rodallega strike that was saved by Schwarzer. This was a nice response from Wigan.
Fulham's play would heat up again a few minutes later. In the 57 minute, Zoltan Gera sends a great pass to Damien Duff. His nice shot comes from the right side of the box. It was saved beautifully by Kirkland. This was a great chance for Fulham.
Fulham's positive play would be rewarded shortly. In the 58th minute, there was a corner kick by Damien Duff. His kick is headed in by Brede Hangeland that just goes off Kirkland's hands. Fulham now took the lead with a score of 2 - 1.
Wigan would try to move forward for the rest of the match. They were controlling play, but had a hard time penetrating the Fulham defense. There best chance came off of a corner kick in the 71st minute. Victor Moses header just goes over the net. They would sustain pressure the rest of the match. However, they were not able to get the equalizer. Fulham win the match 2 - 1.
In concluding, this is a match Fulham deserved to win. They showed Wigan how tough they are at home, especially in the second half. Standout players for me were Zoltan Gera who really got beat up in this match. I would also have to say Stefano Okaka was very good in the second half. He is strong and has a nice touch with the ball. I am hoping we see more of him. He was replaced late in the match hobbling off the pitch. Let's hope he was not injured too badly today. In the end, Fulham won a game that they should win in the league.