Super sub David Datro Fofana was Burnley’s hero as the Chelsea loanee struck twice to earn the Clarets a last-minute 2-2 draw against Fulham at Turf Moor.
For much of the game the pressure looked to be rising on Vincent Kompany, whose side were booed off at the interval amid what appeared to be heading for another despondent afternoon in Lancashire.
Fulham were in full control for much of the game and raced into a 2-0 lead through Joao Palhinha’s glancing header and a quickfire second from Rodrigo Muniz, with little sign of what was to come until Fofana’s introduction shortly after the hour.
The January arrival had enjoyed an impressive debut at Manchester City in midweek but went one better here, first nodding in Lorenz Assignon’s cross to give the Clarets hope with 20 minutes remaining.
That belief turned to reality in added time when he bundled Wilson Odobert’s low cross over the line from close-range, to earn Burnley a valuable point despite conceding the first goal – something they had not managed previously all season.
That point keeps the Clarets seven points from safety owing to Luton’s draw at Newcastle, while Fulham’s poor form now extends to a run of one win in seven matches.
How Fofana rescued unlikely point to build Burnley belief
Burnley had enjoyed one of English football’s quirkier records coming into the game, with their last home defeat against Fulham coming back in 1951.
But that 73-year hoodoo looked under real threat with barely a quarter of an hour gone, when the first attack of note was glanced home by Palinha from a pinpoint Pereira corner.
It felt like a familiar tale to see the Clarets starting brightly before paying the price for a defensive lapse. That deja vu only became stronger once Robinson’s hopeful ball forward beat the offside trap and found Muniz, whose first-time lob was too much for James Trafford to keep out.
Odobert’s narrow far-post miss was the only hint Burnley produced of a comeback before the break, leaving Vincent Kompany to endure the jeers of his home support at the interval.
A third goal would have surely secured a much-needed victory for Fulham after the break, and Burnley were indebted to the form of Trafford for twice keeping out Willian as well as a Tosin Adarabioyo header and a stinging Muniz effort.
It owed more to an singular moment of quality than any shift in momentum that afforded Burnley hope of a comeback, with a crisp counter-attack following a Fulham corner worked quickly to Assignon, whose cross was misjudged by Bernd Leno and nodded into an unguarded net by Fofana.
That still did little to shift the dial, with Fulham seemingly comfortable to see out a one-goal advantage. But at that point, it only needed another moment to prove decisive, and so it proved.
Odobert’s fine play down the flank saw him past Timothy Castagne and into space, before he dug out a low cross which was turned home by Fofana on the slide to secure a dream home debut for the 21-year-old, and finally bring some belief back to Turf Moor.
Burnley visit Liverpool at Anfield next Saturday in the Premier League; kick-off 3pm. Fulham host Bournemouth at the same time.
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