Fulham looked to be heading for their first victory since New Year’s Day until West Brom struck late on to earn a 1-1 draw. Here’s how we rated the players in Felix Magath’s first game in charge.
Maarten Stekelenburg: 8
How tough it is to be a goalkeeper. The Dutchman was arguably Fulham’s man of the match, having made excellent saves from Chris Brunt and James Morrison as the Baggies piled on the pressure in the second half. But then he let Matej Vydra’s shot through his grasp and with it went Fulham’s hopes of a victory. However, he earned his side a point with another save from Brunt in the dying seconds.
Sascha Riether: 6
Posed questions defensively by Brunt but got forward well, particularly in the first half. When Fulham brought on defensive bodies in the second period, he switched to right midfield – a position he played under Magath at Wolfsburg.
John Heitinga: 7
Headed over in the opening minutes when he perhaps should have hit the target but he was strong defensively, making a series of blocks in the second half before switching to right-back.
Brede Hangeland: 7
Marshalled the defence well, making a couple of important blocks. The skipper will need to be in good form over the next few weeks if Fulham are to turn around their poor defensive record.
Fernando Amorebieta: 6
One of five changes made by Magath for his first game in charge but the Spaniard lasted only 52 minutes at left-back before being replaced by John Arne Riise.
Ashkan Dejagah: 7
Played under Magath at Wolfsburg so it was perhaps no surprise that he was restored to the starting line-up, having not even been on the bench of late. And he rewarded his manager with a vibrant first half display, capped by a goal well placed beyond Ben Foster. Was less influential after the break as West Brom dominated the second half.
Scott Parker: 6
Enthusiastic early on, putting in some excellent changes to break up play but was left behind by West Brom’s midfield in the second half.
Steve Sidwell: 7
Had a chance to convert Dejagah’s cross but put it over the top, and was on hand to help out defensively at times.
Kieran Richardson: 7
Caused problems in the first half with his crossing as Fulham took control and it was his delivery that fell invitingly for Dejagah for the goal. Was sacrificed in the second half for Dan Burn as Magath reshaped the defence.
Lewis Holtby: 7
Deployed in the hole, which allowed the German to showcase his creative talents. He was excellent early on, linking up well with Hugo Rodallega and the two wide players, but he saw less of the ball when West Brom regrouped in the second half.
Hugo Rodallega: 7
A willing runner and forced Foster into a good save just before the break, as well as helping out defensively. Replaced by £11m signing Mitroglou, and he’ll know his starting opportunities will be limited when the Greek gets up to match speed.
John Arne Riise: 6
Solid when he came on early in the second half, he was almost instantly involved with an important clearance as West Brom began to exert pressure.
Konstantinos Mitroglou: 6
The £11m signing who never got to play under the manager he signed for. Not quite match fit, but now has his first 30 Premier League minutes under his belt. Didn’t see a lot of the ball, as West Brom were in the ascendancy, but his goal record could serve Fulham well.
Dan Burn: 6
Perhaps unlucky to be back on the bench after recent displays. Kept busy in the final 20 minutes and was composed defensively.
They were barely in the game in the first half, and Fulham deservedly led at the break, but emerged as a force to be reckoned with in the second period. Pepe Mel’s side have gained a reputation for responding well when behind, with points picked up against Everton, Liverpool and Chelsea having fallen behind. But their deficiencies mean they will be one of the teams Fulham will hope to overhaul in the next few weeks.
Man of the match: Stekelenburg (despite the error)