Rob Scott stabbed home a precious equaliser as Fulham fought hard to claim a point in this clash between promotion rivals at a freezing Springfield Park.
Scott equalised with ten minutes to go after pouncing from close range after the electric Paul Brooker had beaten two players on a mazy dribble down the right flank before his shot was palmed away by home keeper Lee Butler. Scott’s goal ensured that the Whites had amassed 44 points – which was Adams’ pre-season target to ensure his side would not be bothered by relegation trouble.
Instead, the Cottagers are challenging for promotion from the Football League basement. They found life tough against another footballing side in the Latics, even though the artic conditions did not make for a free flowing encounter between two sides who prefer to play possession football. The home side even overcome the sending off of striker Graeme Jones, who lashed out at Terry Angus, to take the lead through a sweetly struck shot from Spanish midfielder Roberto Martinez ten minutes in the second half.
Fulham struggled initially to make much of an impression in the final third without the services of top scorer Mike Conroy but Scott’s predatory instincts ensured they headed back down south with a vital point.
WIGAN ATHLETIC: Butler; Sharp, Greenall, Pender, Butler (Kilford 45): Johnson, Martinez, Saville, Biggins; Lowe, Jones. Subs (not used): Carragher, Diaz.
BOOKED: Sharp, Martinez.
SENT OFF: Jones.
GOAL: Martinez (55).
FULHAM: Lange; Watson, Herrera, Cullip, Angus, Blake; Cusack, Morgan, Carpenter, Cockerill (Brooker 63).; Scott. Subs (not used): Soloman, Thomas.
GOAL: Scott (80).
REFEREE: Neale Barry.