Everton rally to beat Fulham

PA Sport
Marouane Fellaini (left)
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Marouane Fellaini (left)

Headers from Denis Stracqualursi and Marouane Fellaini sent Everton into the fifth round of the FA Cup as they came from behind to beat Fulham 2-1 on Friday night.

Danny Murphy gave Fulham a controversial early lead from the penalty spot at Goodison Park but hard-working Everton were rewarded for determined fightback.

Landon Donovan was twice the provider as Stracqualursi, with his first goal for the club, equalised before half-time and Fellaini settled the contest 17 minutes from time.

Everton controlled the early possession but it was Fulham who claimed the lead after the first move of note in the 13th minute.

It also came in contentious circumstances as John Heitinga was adjudged to have handled as he slid in to block a Damien Duff shot. The defender could do little to get his arm out of the way from point-blank range, although it was raised above his head.

Former Liverpool midfielder Murphy calmly stroked home the penalty but Everton, feeling wronged by referee Howard Webb's decision, responded well to the setback.

And the reward for their good spell came from open play as Stracqualursi headed them level after 27 minutes.

The Argentinian was making only his third start for the Toffees but justified his selection as he met a Donovan cross with a firm header that looped beyond the reach of David Stockdale.

Everton made the decisive breakthrough as Donovan hit a deep cross to the far post and Fellaini guided a fine header back across Stockdale into the top corner. The Fulham goalkeeper stretched to try to claw it out but Fellaini's placement for his third goal of the season was perfect.

Fulham boss Martin Jol sent on Bobby Zamora for Duff in attempt to change the momentum of the game with just over 10 minutes remaining. But it failed to have the required effect for the Londoners and Everton played out time to advance to the last 16.

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