Fulham vs. West Ham: Final score 3-1, Cottagers get vital win

Paul Gilham

Fulham got three points thanks to three goals and a forgiving linesman.

Dimitar Berbatov got a birthday gift from the linesman on Wednesday to help Fulham upend West Ham 3-1 at Craven Cottage. The assistant failed to raise his flag despite Berbatov being a yard offside, allowing the Bulgarian to celebrate his 32nd birthday in style and get Fulham off to a great start en route to all three points.

Fulham had won just two of their last 15 in the league before Wednesday, a dreadful run of form that erased their bright start to the season. But once Berbatov scored, their energy picked up and they were on the front foot.

West Ham did equalize right after the right when Kevin Nolan found the net, but Fulham went back in front just one minute later. Hugo Rodallega bundled home Damien Duff's cross and Fulham were in front once again.

Up a goal, Fulham turned to Mark Schwartzer and he did just that. He made a coule fine saves to keep Fulham in front and when Joey O'Brien put the ball in his own net minutes before the final whistle, the match was effectively over. Fulham had a rare and valuable win.

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