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Saturday, February 24, 2007

Premier League, Fulham 1-2 Manchester United

Cristiano Ronaldo picks Fulham's pocket

Cristiano Ronaldo's superb late winner moved Manchester United nine points clear of Chelsea at the top of the Premiership after they came from behind to beat Fulham 2-1 at Craven Cottage here Saturday. Cristiano Ronaldo's 88th-minute winner was among the best of the 18 he has scored this season. Picking up the ball near halfway on the left, he skinned Moritz Volz, left Clint Dempsey behind, swerved inside and then hit a shot that took a telling deflection off Philippe Christanval. Cue manic celebrations with the United bench - 'Gaby is my friend,' Ronaldo said of Gabriel Heinze, who was not in the squad of 16 but received the longest smooch - and a 22nd league win this season. A jovial Sir Alex Ferguson said: 'We were flat. Once they scored, it was an uphill battle. But we dug ourselves out of a hole.'

Brian McBride put the home side in front in the 17th minute but United found an equaliser before half-time through stand-in captain Ryan Giggs.

Fulham boss Chris Coleman (who felt Heidar Helguson was fouled in the penalty area by Edwin van der Sar):

"The referee has no excuses, he was in the perfect position.

"There is only one way to put it and that is that he lost his nerve.

"Can anybody disagree with me if I say that if that happened at the other end of the pitch, and it's 1-1, the referee is going to give a penalty?

"It's frustrating to say the least but what is the point talking about it. I will get another fine."

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson:
"I must say that was the most difficult game we have had all season.
"I think it is a significant result, pariticularly scoring late on.
"Ronaldo just kept going and deserved to get the man of the match.
"Credit to Fulham, they never gave use a moment to settle. Fulham will feel very aggrieved with the result."

Man of the match: Cristiano Ronaldo

Now Let's see the goals: