Fulham boss Martin Jol wants more goals from striker Dimitar Berbatov

Berbatov's first-half volley lit up Craven Cottage. Photo: PA

Fulham boss Martin Jol is hoping for a flood of goals from striker Dimitar Berbatov after his sublime volley delivered a 1-0 win over Stoke at Craven Cottage.

In a game of few clear-cut chances it was Berbatov who made the difference with a well-executed finish in first-half stoppage time.

Jonathan Walters missed a second-half penalty for the visitors who had struggled to get into the game before the interval and are now only a point ahead of the Cottagers in the table.

The winner was Berbatov's ninth goal of the season after moving to west London from Manchester United before the summer transfer window closed, and Jol reckons he can score many more before the end of the campaign.

"Hopefully he will score other goals but we have other players," he said. "Mladen Petric has scored six goals without playing a lot so we have got more players who can make a difference but Dimitar certainly made a difference today.

"Dimitar always scores between 15-25 goals and it would be silly to think he won't score 15-20 goals for us and that is what I always had in mind."

Berbatov rushed over to embrace Jol after smashing Fulham ahead and the manager was quick to point out it was the nature of the goal that led to the particular celebration.

When asked why Berbatov had run over to the touchline to celebrate, Jol said: "Because he scored from a volley and I told him a few months ago he doesn't score any volleys any more.

"He used to do that all the time, he tries to prove a point."

Jol felt his side had the better of the contest but was grateful for Mark Schwarzer's penalty save as Stoke went close to salvaging a point.

"Overall, if you saw the first half, we were the better team," Jol said.

"It is always difficult against them and they changed their system and have all these big guys up front.

"It is not easy, it is not easy for us or a lot of other teams. We should have scored a second goal but we didn't and in the end they could have punished us for the fact that we only scored one goal, but Mark Schwarzer saved the day for us."

Stoke manager Tony Pulis admits his side are still not safe from relegation this season and felt the result at Fulham proves that every game is a difficult challenge.

The point at which Stoke should be safe is on the manager's mind, and Pulis will not accept they are certainly staying up "until we get 40 points, and we are still seven away".

"That will be the watershed and always is for me," Pulis said.

"I think everyone in the league who hasn't got 40 points will be (looking over their shoulders) that is the way it is.

"The league is a relentless league and every game is a tough game as we found out again today."

Pulis also bemoaned Walters' penalty miss as a turning point in the game for his side, who coped better with Fulham after the interval.

He said: "The first half was a very, very dead game and the only bit of quality was Berbatov's. Personally I think Fulham did not cause us many problems in the second half. We needed to score the penalty but we didn't.

"If we score the penalty then it is a different game. We have been closer in away games this year and have had opportunities and chances that we haven't taken."