Capital One Cup: Bent off the bench to finally give home fans something to cheer

FULHAM 2 vs EVERTON 1

FULHAM striker Darren Bent climbed off the bench to score his second goal for the club and treat the home fans at Craven Cottage to a first win since 1 April.

Bent, who joined on loan from Aston Villa last month, dropped out of the starting line-up having gone three games without a goal.

But, after Dimitar Berbatov had cancelled out Steven Naismith’s first-half strike, manager Martin Jol introduced Bent from the bench and the former Tottenham striker netted the decisive goal to put Fulham in the Capital One Cup fourth round for the first time since 2004.

The Toffees, who suffered their first defeat since manager Roberto Martinez succeeded David Moyes in the summer, were deservedly ahead at half-time after Naismith finished off the excellent Gerard Deulofeu’s threaded pass.

Deulofeu and Romelu Lukaku, on loan from Chelsea, were close to adding a second as Everton cranked up the pressure on a frail-looking home side, whose only win since the opening day of the season had come courtesy of a penalty shoot-out in the previous round of this competition at League Two club Burton Albion.

But Fulham levelled after the break when Berbatov struck his first goal of the season from close range.

And, three minutes after his introduction from the bench, Bent collected Giorgos Karagounis’s free-kick and fired in to ease the pressure on Jol and put Fulham in the hat for tonight’s draw.