Features & commentCardiff v Fulham player ratings

Brede Hangeland

Fulham suffered a 3-1 defeat in the bottom-of-the-table clash against Cardiff City. Here’s how we rated Felix Magath’s men.

Maarten Stekelenburg: 6
Made several smart stops in the first half but could do little to prevent Cardiff taking the lead in injury time. However he will be disappointed with his part in the second goal as he appeared to dive over Steven Caulker’s header. The third will frustrate as he had made a good save to deny Jordon Mutch only for the ball to rebound in via Sascha Riether.

Sascha Riether: 6
Had his hands full with Frazier Campbell in the first half and failed to make an impact further forward. Was unlucky with the own goal.

John Heitinga: 7
Strong as a rock in the first half and provided the flicked assist for Lewis Holtby’s goal.

Brede Hangeland: 6
Too easily beaten at times, particularly when Craig Noone cut inside from the right, but he and Heitinga largely kept Kenwyne Jones subdued.

Kieran Richardson: 6
Started brightly going forward but once Noone was into his stride, the former Manchester United man had to concentrate on defensive duties.

Ashkan Dejagah: 6
Aside from a early shot which he smashed into the side netting, when crossing might have been a better option, he was largely ineffective and was replaced due to injury early in the second half.

Steve Sidwell: 6
Broke up play well in the first half, in his role as the destroyer alongside the more creative Holtby, but was another to be less effective in the second half.

Lewis Holtby: 7
Had a fine first half and began the second with a goalbound shot which Cardiff keeper David Marshall did well to claw away. Broke his Fulham duck with a simple finish but wasn’t able to inspire a comeback once Cardiff went back in front.

John Arne Riise: 6
One of two failed experiments from Magath, the Norwegian was used in a more advanced left midfield role but barring a couple of lung-busting runs, he didn’t get into the game and it was little surprise he was replaced at half-time.

Cauley Woodrow: 6
A shock debut for the 19-year-old, who just a few weeks ago wasn’t getting regular football in League Two when on loan at Southend. Magath said he had seen plenty in Woodrow but, although he didn’t look out of his depth, there was no real understanding with Kostas Mitroglou – the fault lay on both sides, mind. Replaced by Darren Bent on 75 minutes.

Kostas Mitroglou: 6
Magath is clearly yet to be convinced by the £11m signing’s ability to adapt to the Premier League and he drifted in and out of this game, largely down to poor service. Did get one good shot away on his first start, a half-volley at 3-1 down which was pushed behind by Marshall, but will need to reprise his Olympiakos scoring form to keep Fulham up.

Alex Kacaniklic: 6
Came on at half-time for Riise and was an immediate step up in quality, with one driving run and fizzing shot which went just wide. Couldn’t keep that up over the next 40 minutes, though.

Giorgos Karagounis: 7
Came on for the injured Dejagah early in the second half and put in a very tidy display. Used the ball efficiently and it was his corner that set up the Fulham goal.

Cardiff
Shaded a low-quality first half, without really getting in behind the hard-working Fulham defence. They seemed to have more about them offensively than the Whites after the break, although they benefited hugely from Stekelenburg’s misjudged dive and Riether’s unfortunate own goal for their crucial second-half strikes.

Man of the match: Craig Noone

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