#81 // Babel → Vietto Fulham 4 – 2 Brighton & Hove Albion

Cody Parkey, if you’re here, take notes:

This is how you use the crossbar.

 

 

 

It’s not often that a team is on the brink of a goal, when one of the players does this:

 

 

 

And it’s not often that the player beside him reacts with such a clever instinct.

Ryan Babel, seeing the ricochet off the crossbar shoot suddenly back toward him…

And a perfect volleyed ball across to Luciano Vietto’s forehead.

 

 

It’s also not often that a team comes back, down two goals at halftime….

To win a game 4-2.

 

 

In the first 20 minutes, Glenn Murray scored twice for Brighton.

At halftime, Fulham was down 2-0.

A loss would almost surely mean they’ll be relegated, by season’s end.

 

But then—they scored. And scored. And scored.

And in the 80th minute, Tom Cairney let the ball fly from just outside the box.

Off the crossbar.

Down to Babel. To Vietto. And in.

 

 

So if you’re here, take heed, Cody Parkey.

See this Fulham team.

See this ball off the crossbar.

See the way it should be done.

Against the way it should never be done:

 

 

 

After tonight, the bottom of the EPL table looks like this:

 

 

Fulham five points behind Southampton, before they’ve played their game.

Still a ways to go before they’re out of the relegation zone.

 

But tonight was a start—and a bit of a miraculous one, too.

Late January. Cold. Losing. Hopeless. Miserable.

 

But then, those goals.

And this shot. This assist.

 

 

And one of the great Premier League nights you can have.