Premier League
CardiffCardiff City3FulhamFulham1

Cardiff City 3-1 Fulham

By Rob WestallBBC Sport Wales
Sascha Riether of Fulham (27) scores an own goal for Cardiff City's third as he is challenged by Jordon Mutch (18) and Fraizer Campbell
Sascha Riether of Fulham (27) scores an own goal for Cardiff City's third as he is challenged by Jordon Mutch (18) and Fraizer Campbell

Cardiff City boosted their hopes of Premier League survival with a victory that plunged bottom club Fulham deeper into trouble.

At the end of a nervy opening half, defender Steven Caulker fired Cardiff in front from close range.

Lewis Holtby levelled just before the hour, blasting home following a corner.

Cardiff can avoid relegation - Solskjaer

But Caulker's header and Sascha Riether's own goal within four second-half minutes moved the Bluebirds up to 18th, four points ahead of Fulham.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side are level on points with 17th-placed West Brom and now only in the relegation zone on goal difference.

With so much riding on the game, there was a nervous tension in the air throughout the game at the Cardiff City Stadium.

And the relief was tangible at full-time, with the home side leaving the field to rapturous applause, before controversial owner Vincent Tan was booed when he walked onto the pitch to celebrate a vital victory.

Cardiff boss Solskjaer employed a 4-5-1 formation more akin to Malky Mackay's reign than his own for a match he described as "must win" for both sides.

Cardiff owner Vincent Tan prays head of the game against Fulham
Cardiff owner Vincent Tan prays ahead of the game

The Bluebirds pressed high up the pitch when Fulham were in possession and were full of attacking intent, but failed to carve out any clear-cut opportunities early on.

And it was the visitors who had the first chance, Johnny Heitinga's quickly-taken free-kick finding Ashkan Dejagah in space inside the area, but his shot hit the side-netting.

Cardiff's first opportunity fell to Fraizer Campbell, who was full of running throughout despite spending the night with his wife after she went into labour, but the striker was unable to find a way past Maarten Stekelenburg.

With Fulham attempting to deny Cardiff any space down the flanks, winger Craig Noone was forced to cut inside more than usual, and after one such run he shot narrowly wide from just outside the box.

Cardiff continued to press, and Kenwyne Jones had a powerful shot from Jordon Mutch's low cross turned behind before Caulker broke the deadlock.

Players not fighting enough - Magath

The England defender finished powerfully from inside the six-yard box after Noone's cross was deflected into his path.

Fulham were more positive after the break, but Cardiff should have extended their lead when Jones headed wide from point-blank range at the far post.

And just two minutes later, the Cottagers were level as Heitinga headed a corner into the path of Holtby, who slid the ball into the empty net.

But they were level for just eight minutes, with Caulker heading home his second from a Mutch corner, the ball bouncing into the net over Stekelenburg.

And when Riether diverted the ball into his own net after Stekelenburg had saved Campbell's header, Cardiff's first top-flight double since 1961 was complete.

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Formation 4-1-4-1

  • 1Marshall
  • 35da Silva
  • 42John
  • 8MedelSubstituted forWolff Eikremat 81'minutes
  • 4Caulker
  • 6TurnerSubstituted forThéophile-Catherineat 90'minutes
  • 16Noone
  • 18Mutch
  • 9Jones
  • 13KimBooked at 56mins
  • 10CampbellSubstituted forDaehliat 72'minutes


  • 15Wolff Eikrem
  • 27Torres Ruiz
  • 28Théophile-Catherine
  • 29Daehli
  • 32Lewis
  • 36Zaha
  • 39Bellamy


Formation 4-4-2

  • 1Stekelenburg
  • 27Riether
  • 15Richardson
  • 7Sidwell
  • 4Heitinga
  • 5Hangeland
  • 24DejagahSubstituted forKaragounisat 50'minutes
  • 10Holtby
  • 25WoodrowSubstituted forBentat 76'minutes
  • 18Mitroglou
  • 3RiiseSubstituted forKacaniklicat 45'minutes


  • 6Kvist
  • 11Kacaniklic
  • 13Stockdale
  • 14Karagounis
  • 22Zverotic
  • 33Burn
  • 39Bent
Martin Atkinson

Match Stats

Home TeamCardiffAway TeamFulham
Shots on Target

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Cardiff City 3, Fulham 1.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Cardiff City 3, Fulham 1.

  3. Post update

    Alexander Kacaniklic (Fulham) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  4. Post update

    Foul by Magnus Wolff Eikrem (Cardiff City).

  5. Post update

    Attempt missed. Mats Daehli (Cardiff City) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Kim Bo-Kyung following a fast break.

  6. Post update

    Delay over. They are ready to continue.

  7. Substitution

    Substitution, Cardiff City. Kévin Théophile-Catherine replaces Ben Turner because of an injury.

  8. Post update

    Delay in match Ben Turner (Cardiff City) because of an injury.

  9. Post update

    Attempt saved. Darren Bent (Fulham) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Giorgos Karagounis.

  10. Post update

    Attempt saved. Kostas Mitroglou (Fulham) left footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Giorgos Karagounis.

  11. Post update

    Attempt saved. Kim Bo-Kyung (Cardiff City) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Kenwyne Jones.

  12. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Steve Sidwell (Fulham) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Sascha Riether.

  13. Post update

    Offside, Fulham. Kostas Mitroglou tries a through ball, but Steve Sidwell is caught offside.

  14. Post update

    Steven Caulker (Cardiff City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  15. Post update

    Foul by Kostas Mitroglou (Fulham).

  16. Substitution

    Substitution, Cardiff City. Magnus Wolff Eikrem replaces Gary Medel.

  17. Post update

    Foul by Jordon Mutch (Cardiff City).

  18. Post update

    Lewis Holtby (Fulham) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  19. Post update

    Corner, Fulham. Conceded by David Marshall.

  20. Post update

    Attempt saved. Kostas Mitroglou (Fulham) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Kieran Richardson with a headed pass.

As It Stood

4Man City26183569274257
6Man Utd28146846311548
10West Ham2887133135-431
11Aston Villa2887133138-731
16Crystal Palace2883171938-1927
17West Brom28413113142-1125
View full Premier League table

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