Eddie Johnson scored twice against his former side as Fulham’s reserves cruised to a comfortable 3-0 win over Cardiff City at Motspur Park yesterday afternoon.
The American international striker spent six months on loan at Ninian Park last season – only scoring two goals in a Cardiff shirt – but matched that total in yesterday’s reserve game and was only the width of a crossbar away from completing a fine hat-trick. He was full of remorse afterwards.
I’m sure sorry about scoring those goals – Cardiff City is like family for me. It’s where I learned how to play in Europe after coming over from America. The staff there, Dave Jones, Terry Burton and Paul Wilkinson, taught me so much and got me used to the different training methods. I came back to Fulham a better player.
Fulham, facing a strong Cardiff line-up, went in front on 11 minutes when Matthew Saunders’ shot deflected off Jonathan Meades and looped over Peter Enckelmen into the City net. The visitors had chances to equalise with Warren Feeney, playing his first full game for six months, shooting straight at David Stockdale after a flowing passing move and then driving an effort over the bar after a fine run from Alex Rae.
Then it was the Johnson show. He notched his first just before half-time, driving home a shot from the edge of the box to punish some slack defending, and nearly added a second when his snapshot clipped the top of the crossbar. He made amends four minutes into the second half when a left foot shot beat Enckelman and made it 3-0.
Johnson forced a fine diving stop from Enckelman as he went in search of a hat-trick and it was with some relief that the Cardiff defence saw him replaced after 67 minutes. The visitors came close to getting on the scoresheet in the closing stages, with Nat Jarvis heading just wide from a Paul Quinn cross and Ross McCormack curled a free-kick over from distance.