Fulham vs. Norwich City: Final score 1-0, time for a great escape?

Ian Walton

It's possible that we're seeing something historic.

We might be witnessing one of the best escapes from relegation in the history of the Premier League. Fulham are now within two points of safety after an impressive performance on Saturday, which culminated in a 1-0 win over relegation rivals Norwich City.

Norwich were the better of the two sides early in the first half, though Fulham had the first excellent chance of the game. Hugo Rodallega squandered it in the 19th minute, miscontrolling a flick on from Steve Sidwell when he was clear through on goal. Rodallega's effort was incredible all match, though he had more moments like this one than positive ones. Ultimately, Fulham wouldn't mind.

David Stockdale kept the score level with the save of the season in the 28th minute, making an unbelievable reaction stop on a volley by Ricky van Wolfswinkel from point-blank range. He also made a great stop on Leroy Fer on the ensuing corner, which was followed up by a bad miss from Bradley Johnson.

The Cottagers got on the board in the 40th minute, taking advantage of a brilliant free kick by Lewis Holtby. He found the head of Sidwell, who flicked backwards into the center of the box, much like he did just over 20 minutes earlier. This time, Rodallega shot first time and beat John Ruddy to put Fulham in front.

While Norwich continued to have the better of the play going into the second half, it was Fulham who had the better chances. Rodallega nearly scored a second in the 55th minute, with Martin Olsson needing to clear his header off the line. Scott Parker came on as a substitute in the 69th minute and nearly scored two minutes later, pulling an uncontested shot from 20 yards just wide. Six minutes after that, Ruddy came up with a big save to keep his team in the game, denying an effort from Sidwell.

The Canaries made an aggressive late change, bringing on teenage attacker Josh Murphy for Johnny Howson in the 79th minute. Ultimately, it didn't lead to any serious late chances as Fulham impressively held on for a victory. In fact, they nearly doubled their lead in the fourth minute of stoppage time, but Ashkan Dejagah scorched his shot over the bar.

Fulham: Stockdale, Amorebieta, Hangeland, Heitinga, Richardson, Sidwell, Diarra (Kvist 85'), Holtby (Parker 69'), Riether, Kasami (Dejagah 57'), Rodallega

Goals: Rodallega (40')

Norwich: Ruddy, Olsson, Turner, Martin, Whittaker, Johnson, Howson (Murphy 79'), Redmond, Fer (Hoolahan 68'), Snodgrass, van Wolfswinkel (Hooper 60')

Goals: None

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