By Mo Khan
Arsenal came from a goal down to beat Fulham 3-1 at Motspur Park
as Mart Poom made his first appearance for the Gunners.
Having disposed of North London rivals Tottenham Hotspur last
Monday, Neil Banfield's young side showed tremendous spirit
with goals from Jay Simpson, Marc Elston and Nicklas Bendtner
overwhelming the home side.
On the night, Fulham struggled to come to terms with the pace
and trickery of Arsenal's forward players, despite enjoying
much of the possession.
Jordan Fowler, without a club after being released during the
summer by Arsenal, partnered Mathew Connolly in the centre of
But Fulham's forwards were causing the Gunners rearguard a
lot of problems early on with the aerial threat of former Watford
man Heidar Helguson and the pace and movement of Ismael Ehui.
And it was the Cottagers' front pairing who combined
superbly to put Fulham ahead after 25 minutes.
Adam Green high ball into the box was chested down first time by
Helguson into the path of Ehui who controlled and found the far
corner with aplomb.
By this point, Estonian international Poom had already been
called into action in the visitors' goal, saving well from a
Helguson header which bounced just in front of him and then
standing firm in a one-on-one with Ehui.
The wet surface ensured a tricky evening for the goalkeepers but
Poom dealt with some difficult situations with both poise and
assurance. The former Derby County man's kicking was also spot
on, and time and again he found the impressive Bendtner with long
kicks upfield as the Danish forward caused mayhem in the Fulham
Arsenal were only behind for 10 minutes when one such Poom kick
was brought down superbly by Bendtner. He turned and slipped in the
pacy Simpson who beat the keeper with ease to bring Arsenal
Two minutes later the same player was clean through again, in an
almost identical position - or so it seemed. The referee's
assistant belatedly raised a flag and Fulham survived.
In the second half, Bendtner continued to cause problems with
his height and presence and after 65 minutes Arsenal took the
A lovely move on the right involving Patrick Cregg and Fabrice
Muamba culminated in a slide-rule pass to Croydon-born Elston. The
Under 18s matchwinner on Saturday extended his purple patch with a
cool finish into the far corner which caressed the upright on the
Helguson squandered a half-chance after that but the game was
settled in the final minute as Bendtner got his reward for yet
another tireless, line-leading performance for the Reserves.
The former FC Copenhagen youngster scored from an acute angle
against Spurs and he did so again last night. Having burst into the
box from the left, he tall frontman opened his body up before
slotting effortlessly into the far corner.
Arsenal have won six of their nine games so far this season and
Bendtner has now scored seven times in nine starts for the
Just another day at the office for Bendtner and the rest of
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