ASTON VILLA 3 FULHAM 1
By planetfootball.com staff
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Juan Pablo Angel got the ball rolling with his opening goal of the season, swooping at the far post to net, although Edwin van der Sar managed to get a hand to the effort. The giant keeper had, seconds earlier, pulled off a wonderful stop to divert an Ian Taylor shot out for a corner.
With Mark Delaney and Gareth Barry impressing, the hosts were good value for their lead but a warning shot was dished out by Fulham when Steed Malbranque set up Steve Marlet for a 'goal' towards the end of the first half that was disallowed for off-side.
The Cottagers came out after the break with their tails up and, after Malbranque wasted a glorious opportunity, Luis Boa Morte muscled his way past Steve Staunton to fire a left foot shot past Peter Enckelman.
Villa managed to turn the screw again with Marcus Allback effective as a substitute with Barry's cross teed up by Oyvind Leonhardsen for the Swedish striker to claim his first Premiership goal after 64 minutes.
Leonhardsen had earlier seen a volley blocked by Alain Goma while, at the other end, Andrejs Stolcers was denied by Enckelman at the far post.
The points were made safe when Barry broke for the hosts and crossed for Allback to head down to Leonhardsen, who smashed his first goal for two years past van der Sar for 3-1.
Marlet was denied by Enckelman with time running out, as Villa held out for a welcome three points.