2008–09 Fulham F.C. season
|League Cup||Third round|
|Top goalscorer||League: Andy Johnson (7)
All: Andy Johnson (10)
|Highest home attendance||25,661 vs Liverpool (4 April 2009)|
|Lowest home attendance||7,584 vs Leicester (27 August 2008)|
The 2008–09 season was Fulham's 111th professional season and their 8th consecutive season in the top flight of English football, the Premier League, since their return in 2001. They were managed by Roy Hodgson in his first full season as Fulham manager. They played in the Premier League by virtue of staying up on goal difference from Reading on the last day of the previous campaign and were hoping to improve on their placing of seventeenth. They eventually finished in 7th place in the Premier League table with 53 points, an improvement of ten places and 18 points. Their league position secured a place in the newly formed Europa League for the 2009-10 season as well as their highest league finish in their history. The club received a number of additional awards from the Premier League, namely the Fair Play Award, the Behaviour of the Public Award and the Barclays Spirit Award for manager Roy Hodgson.
Some of the most notable results of the season came against clubs who finished in the top four in the table. The club beat Manchester United and Arsenal at home and managed a draw at home against Chelsea. In other competitions, Fulham reached the quarter-finals of the FA Cup before losing to league champions Manchester United. In the Football League Cup they defeated Leicester City in the second round but were knocked out by Burnley in the third round.
Roy Hodgson added to the team in the summer with signings including goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer from Middlesbrough and strikers Bobby Zamora from West Ham United and Andrew Johnson who arrived from Everton for a club record £10.5million (though Steve Marlet had cost more when including agents fees in 2001). Club captain Brian McBride decided to return to United States, where he eventually signed with Major League Soccer's Chicago Fire. Olivier Dacourt joined Fulham during the winter transfer window.
|Date||Opponents||H / A||Result
F – A
|15 July 2008||Southend United||A||2–0||Nevland 59', Murphy 61'||3,750|
|19 July 2008||Celtic||H||3–1||Nevland 2', Zamora 30', Andreasen 86'
(Celtic: Barry Robson 41')
|23 July 2008||Busan I'Park||A||[ 0–1]||
(Busan I'Park: Choi Ki Suk 57')
|26 July 2008||Ulsan Hyundai Horang-i||A||2–1||Davies 57', Gera 79'
(Ulsan: Lee Jin Ho 32')
|2 August 2008||Birmingham City||A||1–1||Davies 17'
(Birmingham: Larsson 77')
|9 August 2008||Torino||H||2–2||Zamora 22', Gera 28'
(Torino: Abbruscato 82', Ogbonna 88')
Fulham also put out teams in away matches against Walton Casuals (won 3–1), Staines Town (lost 2–0), Banstead (won 3–0), Carshalton (won 2–0), Crystal Palace (drew 0–0) and Kingstonian (won 8–0). These matches are not included as part of the official pre-season match schedule and the club fielded second-string sides in each game.
Fulham started the season playing away at the KC Stadium against newly promoted Hull City. Seol Ki-Hyeon gave Fulham the lead in the 8th minute. Their lead lasted less than 15 minutes because Geovanni equalised in the 22nd minute. Caleb Folan completed the Hull turn-around 10 minutes from the end of normal time, capping a 2-1 victory for the home team. However, the following week the team gained their first victory of the season with a win against much-fancied Arsenal for only the second time in 43 years. The only goal of the game came from Brede Hangeland midway through the first half who scored directly from a Jimmy Bullard cross, from a couple of yards. A slightly off-colour Arsenal played their usual passing game but could not break Fulham down.
The team did not have another Premier League game to play until 13 September due to Manchester United's participation in the UEFA Super Cup, as well as the break from league football at the beginning of September for international World Cup qualifying matches.
On 17 May 2009 the club confirmed their highest ever league finish with a 1–0 victory over relegation-threatened Newcastle United at St. James' Park. The victory kept them in seventh place in the table, with eighth being the lowest they could finish, bettering the ninth place finish in 2004. Kamara scored in the 41st minute of a tense game which was full of chances for both sides.
|Date||Opponents||H / A||Result
F – A
|16 August 2008||Hull City||A||1–2||Ki-Hyeon 8'
(Hull: Geovanni 22', Folan 81')
|23 August 2008||Arsenal||H||1–0||Hangeland 10'||25,276|
|13 September 2008||Bolton Wanderers||H||2–1||Gera 15', Zamora 41'
(Bolton: K. Davies 82')
|20 September 2008||Blackburn Rovers||A||0–1||
(Blackburn: Derbyshire 84')
|27 September 2008||West Ham United||H||1–2||Murphy pen 59'
(West Ham: C. Cole 43', Etherington 45'+1)
|4 October 2008||West Bromwich Albion||A||0–1||
(West Brom: Bednar 61')
|18 October 2008||Sunderland||H||0–0||25,116|
|26 October 2008||Portsmouth||A||1–1||Dempsey 87'
(Portsmouth: Crouch 61')
|29 October 2008||Wigan Athletic||H||2–0||Johnson 11', 60'||22,500|
|1 November 2008||Everton||A||0–1||
(Everton: Saha 87')
|9 November 2008||Newcastle United||H||2–1||A. Johnson 23', Murphy pen 66'
(Newcastle: Ameobi 57')
|15 November 2008||Tottenham Hotspur||H||2–1||Davies 33', A. Johnson 70'
(Tottenham: F. Campbell 81')
|22 November 2008||Liverpool||A||0–0||43,589|
|29 November 2008||Aston Villa||A||0–0||36,625|
|6 December 2008||Manchester City||H||1–1||Bullard 27'
(Manchester City: Benjani 6')
|13 December 2008||Stoke City||A||0–0||25,287|
|20 December 2008||Middlesbrough||H||3–0||Bullard 41', Murphy 54', Dempsey 59'||23,722|
|26 December 2008||Tottenham Hotspur||A||0–0||35,869|
|28 December 2008||Chelsea||H||2–2||Dempsey 10', 89'
(Chelsea: Lampard 50', 72')
|18 January 2009||West Ham United||A||1–3||Konchesky 22'
(West Ham: Di Michele 7', Noble pen 60', C. Cole 76')
|27 January 2009||Sunderland||A||0–1||
(Sunderland: K. Jones 55')
|31 January 2009||Portsmouth||H||3–1||A. Johnson 14', Nevland 71', 80'
(Portsmouth: Nugent 84')
|7 February 2009||Wigan Athletic||A||0–0||16,499|
|18 February 2009||Manchester United||A||0–3||
(Manchester United: Scholes 12', Berbatov 30', Rooney 63')
|22 February 2009||West Bromwich Albion||H||2–0||Zamora 61', A. Johnson 72'||22,394|
|28 February 2009||Arsenal||A||0–0||60,102|
|4 March 2009||Hull City||H||0–1||
(Hull: Manucho 90+3')
|11 March 2009||Blackburn Rovers||H||1–2||Dempsey 2'
(Blackburn: Diouf 69', Roberts 85')
|14 March 2009||Bolton Wanderers||A||3–1||A. Johnson 42', S. Davies 56', Kamara 88'
(Bolton: K. Davies 45')
|21 March 2009||Manchester United||H||2–0||Murphy pen 18, Gera 87||25,652|
|4 April 2009||Liverpool||H||0–1||
(Liverpool: Benayoun 90'+2)
|12 April 2009||Manchester City||A||3–1||Dempsey 50', 83', Etuhu 59'
(Man City: Ireland 27')
|18 April 2009||Middlesbrough||A||0–0||30,389|
|25 April 2009||Stoke City||H||1–0||Nevland 29'||25,069|
|2 May 2009||Chelsea||A||1–3||Nevland 4'
(Chelsea: Anelka 1', Malouda 10', Drogba 53')
|9 May 2009||Aston Villa||H||3–1||Murphy pen 6', Kamara 46', 60'
(Aston Villa: Young 14')
|16 May 2009||Newcastle United||A||1–0||Kamara 41'||52,114|
|24 May 2009||Everton||H||0–2||
(Everton: Osman 45', 88')
- Fulham's home match against Blackburn Rovers was postponed due to a waterlogged pitch on 10 January 2009. Their match away against Manchester United, due to be played in August, was rearranged due to United's involvement in the UEFA Super Cup.
Premier League table
||Qualification or relegation
|1||Manchester United (C)||38||28||6||4||68||24||+44||90||2009–10 UEFA Champions League Group stage|
|4||Arsenal||38||20||12||6||68||37||+31||72||2009–10 UEFA Champions League Play-off round|
|5||Everton||38||17||12||9||55||37||+18||63||2009–10 UEFA Europa League Play-off round|
|7||Fulham||38||14||11||13||39||34||+5||53||2009–10 UEFA Europa League Third qualifying round|
|9||West Ham United||38||14||9||15||42||45||−3||51|
|18||Newcastle United (R)||38||7||13||18||40||59||−19||34||Relegation to Football League Championship 2009–10|
|20||West Bromwich Albion (R)||38||8||8||22||36||67||−31||32|
Updated to games played on 24 May 2009.
Source: Barclays Premier League
For further information on European qualification see Premier League - Competition.
Rules for classification: 1) points; 2) goal difference; 3) number of goals scored
(C) = Champion; (R) = Relegated; (P) = Promoted; (E) = Eliminated; (O) = Play-off winner; (A) = Advances to a further round.
Only applicable when the season is not finished:
(Q) = Qualified to the phase of tournament indicated; (TQ) = Qualified to tournament, but not yet to the particular phase indicated; (RQ) = Qualified to the relegation tournament indicated; (DQ) = Disqualified from tournament.
Results by round
Last updated: 17 May.
Source: Premier League Matches
Ground: A = Away; H = Home. Result: D = Draw; L = Loss; W = Win; P = Postponed.
The club entered the FA Cup in the third round, with an away match against Sheffield Wednesday at Hillsborough on 3 January 2009. Fulham took the lead through Andrew Johnson from a Danny Murphy through ball in the 12th minute but were pegged back by a 25-yard goal from Tommy Spurr after 21 minutes. The game remained 1-1 until the 88th minute, when Johnson scored his second of the game which turned out to be the winner.
Fulham next faced one of only two non-league sides left in the competition, Kettering Town. After a positive opening from the underdogs Kettering, Fulham took the lead in the 12th minute, Simon Davies scoring a volley from 15 yards from a Clint Dempsey cross. But the lead only lasted until the 36th minute as the lively Craig Westcarr scored a deflected freekick. Kettering continued to press after the break and with the additions of Danny Murphy and Bobby Zamora, they regained the lead in the 77th minute with Murphy scoring the goal. However Kettering were not finished and 9 minutes later, Westcarr scored a penalty after a trip from Brede Hangeland. With Kettering planning a trip to London, Andy Johnson and Zamora scored two late goals to seal the tie.
In the fifth round, Fulham were drawn away again to Championship side Swansea City at the Liberty Stadium. Roy Hodgson made three changes from Fulham's last Premier League match against Wigan, with Dempsey and Paintsil rested after playing abroad in midweek for their countries. to be replaced by Gera and Stoor while Zamora also dropped to the bench in favour of Nevland. Swansea created some clear-cut opportunities in the early stages, with Mark Gower, Alan Tate and Lloyd Dyer testing Mark Schwarzer. Fulham, however, found the breakthrough a minute before half-time with a slice of luck as Paul Konchesky's corner was deflected in off Swansea defender Garry Monk. Swansea continued to dominate and equalised in the 52nd minute when Jason Scotland scored, evading a challenge before firing the ball low past Schwarzer. With both sides playing attractive passing football the sides could not be separated.
Fulham and Swansea both went into the hat for the quarter-finals and were given the prospect of a tie with defending Premier League and Champions League champions Manchester United. They first had to get through the fifth round replay, which took place on 24 February 2009 at Craven Cottage. It was Fulham's second game in three days but Roy Hodgson put out a strong side with the only changes being Nevland replacing Johnson up front and Dacourt making his first start for the club in place of Danny Murphy. Jason Scotland scored just after half-time following an even first half, knocking the ball in from 15 yards. However, Fulham did not give up, Zamora coming close on several occasions before they equalised through Dempsey in the 67th minute. Four minutes later they turned the game around when Zamora scored his second goal in as many games. The home side held on to secure victory.
|Date||Round||Opponents||H / A||Result
F – A
|3 January 2009||Third Round||Sheffield Wednesday||A||2–1||A. Johnson 12', 88'
(Sheffield Wednesday: Spurr 21')
|24 January 2009||Fourth Round||Kettering Town||A||4–2||Davies 12', Murphy 77', Johnson 88', Zamora 89'
(Kettering: Craig Westcarr 36', 86'(pen))
|14 February 2009||Fifth Round||Swansea City||A||1–1||Monk 44' (own goal)
(Swansea: Scotland 52')
|24 February 2009||Fifth Round replay||Swansea City||H||2–1||Dempsey 77', Zamora 81'
(Swansea: Scotland 47')
|7 March 2009||Quarter final||Manchester United||H||0–4||
(Manchester United: Tévez 20', 35', Rooney 50', Park 81')
Football League Cup
Fulham entered the Football League Cup at the second round stage after receiving the bye awarded to Premier League clubs in the first round. They faced a Leicester City side finding their feet in League One after relegation the previous season. Fulham took the lead in the 31st minute through one of their new signings, the Hungarian international Zoltan Gera but Leicester turned the game around in the early stages of the second half. Veteran Paul Dickov drew them level on 46 minutes and just two minutes later Andy King completed the turnaround. The match remained 2-1 until the 83rd minute when Jimmy Bullard levelled the scores. But this was not the end of the scoring and with the game seemingly heading for Extra-time, Danny Murphy scored the winner for Fulham in the second minute of stoppage time to win the encounter and send Fulham through to the third round.
In the third round, a Fulham side featuring the attacking talents of Johnson, Gera and Dempsey lost 1–0 to a Burnley side who had been performing well and sitting in the play-off positions in the Football League Championship. With the match seemingly heading for extra-time, Jay Rodriguez won the match in the 88th minute. He collected a Chris Eagles through ball just inside the area and then slotted the ball past Pascal Zuberbühler. Fulham were therefore knocked out of the competition.
|Date||Round||Opponents||H / A||Result
F – A
|27 August 2008||Second Round||Leicester City||H||3–2||Gera 31', Bullard 83', Murphy 90'+2
(Leicester: Dickov 46', A. King 48')
|23 September 2008||Third Round||Burnley||A||0–1||
(Burnley: Rodriguez 88')
Statistics correct as of final match against Everton, played 24 May 2009.
|No.||Pos.||Name||League||FA Cup||Carling Cup||Other||Total||Discipline|
|2||DF||Moritz Volz *||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|6||MF||Andranik Teymourian **||0(1)||0||0||0||1||0||0||0||1(1)||0||1||0|
|7||MF||Seol Ki-Hyeon *||2(2)||1||0||0||2||0||0||0||4(2)||1||0||0|
|14||FW||Eddie Johnson *||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|21||MF||Jimmy Bullard **||18||2||0||0||1||1||0||0||19||3||1||0|
|26||MF||Leon Andreasen *||0(6)||0||1||0||1||0||0||0||2(6)||0||1||0|
|27||DF||Adrian Leijer *||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|30||MF||Wayne Brown *||0(1)||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0(1)||0||0||0|
|MF||Hameur Bouazza *||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|DF||Gabriel Zakuani **||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|FW||Collins John *||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|DF||TJ Moncur **||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
- * Player out on loan
- ** Player left club
|Johnson, AndrewAndrew Johnson||7||3||0||10|
|Dempsey, ClintClint Dempsey||7||1||0||8|
|Murphy, DannyDanny Murphy||5||1||1||7|
|Kamara, DiomansyDiomansy Kamara||4||0||0||4|
|Zamora, BobbyBobby Zamora||2||2||0||4|
|Nevland, ErikErik Nevland||4||0||0||4|
|Davies, SimonSimon Davies||2||1||0||3|
|Gera, ZoltanZoltan Gera||2||0||1||3|
Mark Schwarzer arrived on a free transfer from Middlesbrough when his contract expired and fellow goalkeeper David Stockdale came from Darlington. Despite the promotion of West Bromwich Albion to the Premier League, Zoltán Gera rejected "the best contract the club could [offer]"  and signed with Fulham. The club also signed Andranik Teymourian from Bolton Wanderers on 12 June 2008. Toni Kallio signed a permanent contract after a loan spell during the second half of the previous season. On 15 July 2008, Bobby Zamora and John Pantsil signed on a joint-deal from West Ham. On 30 July 2008, Sweden international Fredrik Stoor signed a deal with the team, moving on from Rosenborg BK. Andrew Johnson was bought from Everton for a fee of around £10.5million, Fulham's second highest transfer fee.
Fulham released ten players, including Carlos Bocanegra, Philippe Christanval and goalkeeper Tony Warner. Paul Stalteri returned to Tottenham after a loan spell and Brian McBride went back home to America to play for the Chicago Fire. Norwich City took two of Fulham's players; Dejan Stefanovic permanently and Elliot Omozusi on loan for the season. Two goalkeepers also left the club, as Ricardo Batista left for Sporting Clube de Portugal and veteran Kasey Keller was released. David Healy moved to Sunderland, Steven Davis made a permanent switch to Rangers and Moritz Volz and Hameur Bouazza both went out on loan. Alexey Smertin had his contract with Fulham terminated.
|22 May 2008||GK||Mark Schwarzer||Middlesbrough||Free|
|4 June 2008||GK||David Stockdale||Darlington||Undisclosed|
|11 June 2008||MF||Zoltán Gera||West Bromwich||Free|
|12 June 2008||MF||Andranik||Bolton||Free|
|24 June 2008||DF||Chris Smalling||Maidstone||Free|
|4 July 2008||DF||Toni Kallio||BSC Young Boys||Undisclosed*|
|15 July 2008||FW||Bobby Zamora||West Ham||£4.3m**|
|15 July 2008||DF||John Paintsil||West Ham||£2m**|
|30 July 2008||DF||Fredrik Stoor||Rosenborg BK||£2m|
|6 August 2008||GK||Pascal Zuberbühler||Neuchâtel Xamax||Free|
|7 August 2008||FW||Andy Johnson||Everton||£12.5m |
|29 August 2008||MF||Dickson Etuhu||Sunderland||Undisclosed|
|1 September 2008||MF||Julian Gray||Coventry||Season-long loan|
- Kallio had been on loan at the club since January on loan and signed a permanent two-year deal.
- Zamora and Paintsil came for a joint fee of £6.3 million.
|23 May 2008||DF||Paul Stalteri||Tottenham||Loan return|
|23 May 2008||DF||Carlos Bocanegra||Rennes||Free|
|23 May 2008||DF||Philippe Christanval||Released||Free|
|23 May 2008||DF||Ian Pearce||Oxted & District||Free|
|23 May 2008||MF||Simon Elliott||Released||Free|
|23 May 2008||MF||Jari Litmanen||FC Lahti||Free|
|23 May 2008||MF||Michael Timlin||Swindon Town||Free|
|23 May 2008||FW||Ismael Ehui||Released||Free|
|23 May 2008||FW||Björn Runström||OB||Free|
|28 May 2008||GK||Corrin Brooks-Meade||Released||Free|
|28 May 2008||GK||Tony Warner||Hull City||Free|
|28 May 2008||FW||Brian McBride||Chicago Fire||Free|
|16 July 2008||GK||Kasey Keller||Seattle Sounders||Free|
|18 July 2008||GK||Ricardo Batista||Sporting Lisbon||Nominal|
|18 July 2008||DF||Dejan Stefanović||Norwich||Undisclosed|
|25 July 2008||DF||Nathan Ashton||Wycombe||Undisclosed|
|21 August 2008||FW||David Healy||Sunderland||Undisclosed|
|21 August 2008||MF||Steven Davis||Rangers||£3m|
|1 September 2008||MF||Alexei Smertin||Contract terminated|
The first departures of the winter transfer window happened in December when Lee Cook returned to his former club Queen's Park Rangers on a permanent deal, having spent several months back there on loan. He had not made any first-team appearances for Fulham since signing in the summer 2007 transfer window. Gabriel Zakuani also moved to Peterborough United following a successful loan spell. Midfielder Jimmy Bullard also left the club on 23 January 2009, signing for Hull City in a £5 million deal. He had been a target for Bolton Wanderers but they decided not to pursue their interest in him. Adrian Leijer and Andranik Teymourian moved on loan to Norwich City and Barnsley respectively, with Elliot Omozusi returning from Norwich. Leon Andreasen signed for German side Hannover on loan. TJ Moncur left the club to sign for League Two side Wycombe Wanderers.
Giles Barnes was Fulham's first signing during the winter transfer window, moving on loan from Derby County until the end of the season. He was also joined on transfer deadline day by former Leeds United player Olivier Dacourt, who also signed on loan from Inter Milan. Julian Gray made his loan signing from Coventry City a permanent deal.
|31 January 2009||MF||Giles Barnes||Derby County||Loan|
|2 February 2009||MF||Olivier Dacourt||Inter Milan||Loan|
|2 February 2009||MF||Julian Gray||Coventry City||Undisclosed|
|5 December 2008||MF||Lee Cook||Queen's Park Rangers||Undisclosed|
|December 2008||DF||Gabriel Zakuani||Peterborough United||Free|
|2 January 2009||DF||TJ Moncur||Wycombe Wanderers||Free|
|23 January 2009||MF||Jimmy Bullard||Hull City||£5m|
|Date From||Date To||Pos.||Name||Moving To|
|19 July 2008||2 February 2009||DF||Elliot Omozusi||Norwich City|
|1 August 2008||8 January 2009||MF||Lee Cook||Queens Park Rangers|
|8 August 2008||1 January 2009||DF||TJ Moncur||Bradford City|
|9 August 2008||30 June 2009||MF||Hameur Bouazza||Charlton Athletic|
|22 August 2008||30 June 2009||FW||Eddie Johnson||Cardiff City|
|28 August 2008||30 June 2009||DF||Moritz Volz||Ipswich Town|
|31 August 2008||3 March 2009||FW||Collins John||NEC Nijmegen|
|11 September 2008||13 December 2008||DF||Gabriel Zakuani||Peterborough|
|21 November 2008||31 December 2009||MF||Robert Milsom||Southend United|
|8 January 2009||30 June 2009||MF||Hameur Bouazza||Birmingham City|
|14 January 2009||30 June 2009||MF||Seol Ki-Hyeon||Al-Hilal|
|2 February 2009||30 June 2009||DF||Leon Andreasen||Hannover 96|
|2 February 2009||30 June 2009||DF||Adrian Leijer||Norwich City|
|2 February 2009||30 June 2009||MF||Andranik||Barnsley|
|2 March 2009||30 June 2009||GK||David Stockdale||Leicester City|
|26 March 2009||30 June 2009||DF||Adam Watts||Northampton Town|
|2 April 2009||16 August 2009||MF||Wayne Brown||Turun Palloseura|
- David Stockdale was initially signed by Leicester City on a one-month loan deal but this was later extended for the rest of the season.
|Assistant manager||Mike Kelly|
|First team coach||Ray Lewington|
|Reserve team coach||Billy McKinlay|
Last updated: 7 August
Source: Fulham FC
|Ground (capacity and dimensions)||Craven Cottage (26,000 / 105x68 meters)|
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