Sunderland 0 Fulham 0

Last updated : 28 February 2010 By Footymad Previewer
Sunderland's winless run shows no sign of ending after the Black Cats were held to a goalless draw at home by Fulham.

The draw extends the Wearsiders run to 14 Premier League games without a win and on this showing it's hard to see where their next victory is coming from.

The hosts offered little in the way of a cutting edge, although Fulham's Mark Schwarzer was the busier of the two keepers - the visitors not managing a single shot on target throughout the whole game.

Not that that statistic will have worried Fulham boss Roy Hodgson, who will probably have been satisfied with the stalemate.

Sunderland boss Steve Bruce will certainly be far more concerned than his counterpart, with the Black Cats chief well aware of his side's need start to picking up wins, especially on home turf.

But in a game which certainly wasn't for the football purists, neither side looked capable of stamping their authority on the encounter.

It was pretty dire fare early on with the hosts clearly suffering from nerves and a lack of confidence.

So much so that they seemed to overly rely on long ball out from the back which were comfortably dealt with by the Cottagers rearguard.

The visitors were hardly pulling up any trees either and were perhaps slightly jaded after their midweek trip to Ukraine to face Shakhtar Donetsk in the Europa League.

But it was the Londoners who had the best of the chances early on.

Zoltan Gera fired just wide of the goal on seven minutes and Bobby Zamora, who had been an injury doubt for the game, should have done better with his header when put in by Simon Davies minutes later.

Sunderland were restricted to bit-part opportunities and Fraizer Campbell's appeals for penalty after he ran into Nicky Shorey were correctly waved away on 26 minutes.

The Black Cats did show more as an attacking force as the half came to a close. Darren Bent forced a save from Schwarzer on 38 minutes while Kenwyne Jones fired over and then scuffed a shot straight at the Australian keeper just before the break.

With half-time approaching there was a nervous moment of comedy proportions for the Wearsiders when Michael Turner let the ball go to Zamora with the forward clearly offside.

However, the assistant referee waited right until the last minute before raising his flag which caused some concern among the home fans.

Things continued in much the same vein after the break with both sides feeding on half chances.

But it was perhaps the Wearsiders who just edged it with Campbell and Bent both firing wide of the mark, while substitute Bolo Zenden and Alan Hutton both fired into the side-netting from tight angles.

Substitute Benjani Mwaruwari was also wayward with his effort just before the final whistle, although had Bent been able to get anything on it it may have been a different story.

But it wasn't to be and Fulham will have left the field delighted to have earned a valuable away point.

Steve Bruce's men, on the other hand, will be ruing their inability to turn a draw into a much-needed win.