With the constant doom and gloom that seems to surround Fulham these days, it might be a nice idea to reflect on some of the better moments in the clubs long history – notably the most memorable goals that helped shape the team we all know and love.
Rodney McAree v Carlisle United (1997)
Kicking us off is a goal from 1997, which arguably helped to get the ball rolling for Fulham (excuse the pun), in terms of their following successes.
With Fulham sitting in an uninspiring position within Division Three, the club needed a hero to step up to the plate and propel them up the league.
That man came in the form of Scottish front man Rodney McAree, whose last gasp goal away at Carlisle United all but secured Fulham’s promotion to Division Two.
A cult hero amongst the faithful, the song “Who put the ball in the Carlisle net?” is still sometimes sang at the Cottage.
Sean Davis v Blackburn (2001)
The second goal is one that came from the Division One promotion season of 2000/2001.
With Fulham battling it out with Blackburn Rovers for top-spot in the league, a late fixture was marked as the decider for the two teams.
Away at Blackburn the Whites went down to ten-men after Rufus Brevett was shown a second yellow.
With it all to do Fulham managed to keep the score at 1-1 until the final seconds of the game when Sean Davis popped up in the box to get on the end of a deflected Lee Clark shot.
Sending the ball into the top left corner he ran to Fulham fans, composed himself and had a little dance in celebration.
Fulham’s next game in the league was against Huddersfield Town where the boys in black-and-white acquired the three points necessary for promotion.
Danny Murphy v Portsmouth (2008)
Continuing in no particular order comes the most important goal in Fulham’s Premier League history, which was scored by Danny Murphy in 2008.
With the season drawing to a close and Fulham’s status as a Premier League outfit in ruins, Roy Hodgson’s team embarked upon ‘The Great Escape’ but needed three points in their last game away at Portsmouth to have any hope of survival.
Popping up in the box – in a position he later admitted he was told not to be in – Danny Murphy headed home a Jimmy Bullard freekick to give Fulham the all-important result.
Clint Dempsey v Juventus (2010)
In 2009 Fulham had finally become an established Premier League outfit, and having earned themselves a place in the Europa League, ambitiously took to pastures new.
Facing off against teams that would have only normally be doable on Fifa 09, Fulham meticulous worked their way through the coveted competition, dispatching European heavyweights in the process.
Meeting Juventus in the quarter-finals would prove to be Fulham’s hardest test-to-date, and with the team having fallen 3-1 behind in the first leg, fans took to the Cottage with arguably one intention – to congratulate the boys on their remarkable achievement.
But what the fans perhaps didn’t know was that the Whites weren’t quite done, despite David Trezeguet scoring early for the visitors to put them now 4-1 ahead on aggregate.
With Fabio Cannavaro sent off for a professional foul, Fulham began their fight back with Zamora and Gera (2) drawing the aggregate score level at 4-4.
As the game reached its conclusion, nervous anxiety stirred within the Cottage, and with the momentum very much with the side in black-and-white, Fulham continued to press until Clint Dempsey found himself with the ball on the edge of the area.
Causing time to stand still, a pin-drop could be heard in the Hammersmith End as his floated cross-cum-shot effortlessly nestled itself into the top-right corner of the net, beyond Chimenti – a moment like no other.
Zoltan Gera v Hamburg (2010)
Meeting the competition hosts Hamburg in the semi-final would prove to be another difficult fixture for Fulham and one that would again need to be settled over two legs.
Drawing 0-0 in Germany, Fulham’s Europa League destiny was to be decided at the Cottage, in a game that really did have every kind of emotion.
Shattering the initial optimism with a goal from a superb freekick, Mladen Petric put Hamburg ahead.
Some confidence was restored when Simon Davies scored one of the best goals ever to be seen at the Cottage to make the score 1-1, but the initiative was still with Hamburg who would go through on the away goal rule.
The job was left to Fulham’s man of the competition, one Zoltan Gera, who, popping up in the box managed to turn on the spot to send the ball into the net and Fulham into Europa League dreamland.