Pavel’s debut goal sets up Fulham victory

Fulham 2 Stoke 1

Pavel Pogrebnyak scored on his Fulham debut as the Whites secured victory despite a late Stoke fightback at Craven Cottage.

The Russia striker announced his arrival in English football in fine style, gathering John Arne Riise’s low ball into the box and firing into the roof of the net.

And after that 16th-minute opener, the lead was doubled when Fulham’s top scorer Clint Dempsey tried his luck with a shot that ended up in the net after hitting the bar and then luckless City keeper Thomas Sorensen.

But the home side’s afternoon took a turn for the worse in the second half, when Pogrebnyak limped off and they were left without an out-and-out striker for the final half an hour.

They had to withstand late pressure and Stoke pulled a goal back with 12 minutes remaining courtesy of Ryan Shawcross’ header from Jermaine Pennant’s corner.

Stoke should have equalised but Peter Crouch volleyed wastefully wide, before Dempsey hit the post from a tight angle in injury time.

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