The press are full of praise for a fine Fulham performance this morning. And rightly so.
Dave Middleton, Guardian online:
Fulham enjoyed a famous night as they qualified for the last 16 of the Europa League thanks to a first-half headed goal against the run of play from Brede Hangeland that gave the Londoners a 3-2 aggregate win. The defender also starred at the opposite end of the pitch as Fulham withstood a determined Shakhtar Donetsk onslaught that saw tempers fray in the closing stages at the Donbass Arena.
Kevin Darling, BBC:
Fulham produced a backs-to-the-wall display to seal a famous Europa League win against Uefa Cup holders Shakhtar.
The Ukrainian side dominated before Brede Hangeland headed in Damien Duff’s free-kick with Fulham’s first chance.
A herculean performance from Fulham in the Ukraine ensured their qualification to the last 16 of the Europa League, as they held Shakhtar Donetsk to a 1-1 draw which saw them progress 3-2 on aggregate.
John Ley, Daily Telegraph:
Fulham recorded one of the greatest results in their history when they knocked holders Shakhtar Donetsk out of the Europa League and moved into the last sixteen of the competition.
Brede Hangeland’s first half goal gave Fulham a 3-1 aggregate advantage and though Jadson responded in the 70th minute, Roy Hodgson’s team held out to book a place against Juventus or Ajax.
Fulham cannot lay claim to many glorious European nights in their history, but a short list is growing longer by the game.
The Premier League side, ambivalent about the merits of the Europa League in its early stages, are now fully paid-up members of its fan club. Fulham produced a terrifically stubborn display last night to oust Shakhtar Donetsk and have advanced deeper into a continental competition than ever before.
Andrew Dillon, The Sun:
BREDE HANGELAND was immense in every sense as Fulham came to Ukrainian mining country and dug out an amazing result.
The defender’s goal put the tie beyond Shakhtar’s reach and he marshalled a defence which let its guard slip just once against an onslaught.
But there were heroes all over the pitch for boss Roy Hodgson’s side as they reached the last 16 with a 3-2 aggregate win.
Roy Hodgson hailed Shakhtar as the best side he had faced in 35 years of management, but his troops thwarted the UEFA Cup holders thanks to stunning defensive performances from centre-half Brede Hangeland and goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer.
Hangeland was also the hero at the other end, heading a 33rd-minute goal against the run of play that Shakhtar never quite recovered from.
Brede Hangeland was the hero on a European glory night for Fulham as they stunned Shakhtar Donetsk to reach the last 16 of the Europa League.
The defender, along with goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer, kept out almost everything the Ukrainians threw at them at the vast Donbass Arena.
Hangeland popped up with Fulham’s goal – with their first attack of the night – to set up a stunning success for Roy Hodgson’s men.
During their visit to England Shakhtar’s players were barred from Harrods, owned by Fulham chairman Mohamed Al Fayed, and the Londoners knew that if they could shut up shop again they would be going through.