LONDON (AP) — West Ham top scorer Tomas Soucek was sent off in second-half stoppage time in a 0-0 draw with relegation-threatened Fulham in the English Premier League on Saturday.
The Czech Republic midfielder appeared to be attempting to get himself free from the shackles of his marker, Aleksandar Mitrović, at a free kick when he lifted his left arm and brushed his elbow against the face of the Fulham striker.
Mitrović fell to the ground, referee Mike Dean was advised by VAR to look at the incident on the pitchside monitor and, after a long review, the official showed Soucek — a scorer of eight league goals this season — a red card.
West Ham defender Vladimir Coufal struck the crossbar with a header in a rare opening for the visitors, who would have jumped into the top four — at least for one night — with a win at Craven Cottage.
They stayed in fifth place, a point behind Liverpool.
Fulham bounced back from a lacklustre 2-0 loss to Leicester in midweek and was able to subdue in-form West Ham striker Michail Antonio, but could not break the deadlock despite forcing some late half-chances.
The draw means only Brighton have had more draws this season than Fulham’s nine, and left Scott Parker’s side in third-to-last place, eight points from safety.
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