Fulham defeated Newcastle 2-1 at home last night to pick up its first victory in seven matches in English soccer’s Premier League.
Steve Sidwell’s deflected shot got past Newcastle keeper Tim Krul in the 19th minute, giving the home team its first goal in more than five hours of play. Hatem Ben Arfa tied the match nine minutes into the second half, but Hugo Rodallega’s header gave Fulham the win.
The victory pushes Fulham into 13th place, three points ahead of Newcastle, which has lost five of the last six matches. Fulham hadn’t won in the league since a 1-0 match against Aston Villa Oct. 20.
“It was a vital win,” Fulham manager Martin Jol said in a broadcast interview. “If you lose this game you get in a depression and we didn’t want that. It wasn’t easy, although if you look at the chances we had we should have finished it off a lot earlier.”
Newcastle hasn’t won a league game away from home yet this season. It defeated Wigan 3-0 a week ago.
“The performances against Stoke, Wigan and today have improved, but it is a worry we don’t have enough points,” Newcastle coach Alan Pardew said.