Fulham 2 Leeds United 0

After the game PH told reporters, "Certain things went against us. Some pleasing things came out of the game but I'm getting frustrated.” I’m not surprised, there is a clarion call on Social Media for Leeds to sack Heckingbottom already when I really think those making the call are missing the point, almost in the same way Ekuban and Grot missed their chances!

In the last four games – Reading, Wednesday, Bolton and Fulham – I think we’ve played some of our best football of the season and against four sides that all had far more to play for than Leeds. Three of them have been fighting to maintain their Championship status and one, Fulham last night, are on the threshold of a tilt at the play-offs and are reckoned to be one of the form teams in the division. We saw how good they were in the first half when their slick passing and quick movement caused our limited players untold problems. But, second half, I deny anybody to say we didn’t match them in every department bar sticking the ball in the net. In that aspect Fulham were the epitome of efficiency; we all know that to succeed in the Championship you have to be clinical in front of goal with the few chances that usually present themselves. They did, we didn’t. Caleb Ekuban had two similar chances on Good Friday and missed them both – I understand the comments from some that he’s young, he’s not had much time on the pitch this year and agree he may still come good (as Chris Wood did after a similar raft of missed chances early last season) but there is no point trying to be kind and saying all that and then not accepting the fact that he’s paid around half a million quid a year to do a job and he’s not doing it. Crikey, we all get criticised at work if we fail to do what we’re paid for. I really feel Heckingbottom’s frustration because he is taking most of the flack. Many fans didn’t want him in the first place believing him (wrongly in my view) to be a cheap option and they are using the continuing poor results as their proof he’s not up to the job. I disagree, I’ve not seen anything yet that suggests he can’t do this job – but the material he has at the moment is not good enough; we all know that if we stop long enough to consider it. That is also another problem PH has in that he is facing criticism for not getting more out of the players than TC got; well, I’d argue he is and I still believe we have been playing far better in these last four games and had our strikers put those chances away we’d all be singing his praises! I don’t believe Jose or Pep would do any better!

There were other failings on view last night, our ball control and passing was sometimes poor, usually at crucial times, and once again Samu Saiz, for all his mercurial talent, went down too many blind alleys but, overall I wasn’t dismayed by our football as I have been at times in the recent past. Results are everything in this game though and PH does have to come up with a way of getting some with this limited bunch of players or maybe he’ll get fed up of the hassle from some sections and he’ll walk away from it; I hope it doesn’t come to that and maybe he doesn’t pay any attention to social media anyway! The 7,200 fans at Craven Cottage last night seemed to understand where the fault lies… as one sage old supporter, slightly the worse for wear, was heard to say in the bogs after the game….”Jesus, we somehow managed to replace one sh**e striker with two who were even more sh*terer!”

Game Statistics

 

                           Fulham   Leeds Utd

Possession             60%           40%

Shots                        17                9

On Target                  4                2

Corners                      6                5

Fouls                           9              10