Clint Dempsey's injury-time penalty kick was saved by Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech, leaving Fulham and the Blues tied 0-0 Monday night in the Premier League's west London derby.
Dempsey was sent tumbling by defender David Luiz in the penalty area at Craven Cottage. Cech dove to his right to stop Dempsey's low kick, and the American midfielder's bicycle kick attempt on the rebound went wide. If Dempsey had scored, it would have been his 10th Premier League goal of the season, a record for American players.
"Chelsea asked questions of us in the second half but given the circumstances, it was disappointing at the end," said Fulham manager Mark Hughes, who believed Dempsey's penalty should have been retaken because Didier Drogba encroached the penalty area as the American took his run-up.
Fernando Torres, signed by Chelsea from Liverpool for $80 million last month, had a second frustrating match for the defending champions before being substituted in the 71st minute.
"I think he played well," Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti said. "His performance was much better than it was against Liverpool. Every striker wants to score,l but I don't think he's getting frustrated."
Chelsea didn't start Drogba, who entered for Torres.
"I don't know if he (Drogba) was happy but it doesn't matter — every game is important now and we have to rotate to keep him in good condition," Ancelotti said.
Chelsea (13-7-6) is fifth with 45 points, 12 behind league-leading Manchester United (16-1-9) and two back of Tottenham (13-5-8) for the final Champions League berth next season.
"I think now it's too much," Ancelotti said of the gap with United. "The most important thing is to come in the top four and I think we will be able to do this."
Fulham (6-8-13) is 12th with 31 points, four above the relegation zone.
MADRID (AP) — Pierre Webo scored in the 11th minute, giving Mallorca a 1-0 victory over Athletic Bilbao in the Spanish league and ending the visitors' five-game unbeaten streak.
Athletic Bilbao (12-9-2) is fifth with 38 points, seven behind Villarreal (14-6-3) for the last Champions League berth. Mallorca (9-10-4) has 31 points, tied with Getafe, Sevilla and Real Sociedad for seventh.