Battling Fulham grind out yet another draw


Fulham had goalkeeper Alphonse Areola to thank after grinding out a sixth draw in eight games.

The French stopper, who is on loan from PSG, pulled off a string of good saves to deny the hosts, who fashioned enough chances to win the game, but saw their inability in front of goal to stretch their winless run at home to 14 games dating back to June last year.

Leandro Trossard was guilty of spurning three good opportunities in the opening 20 minutes alone including a one-on-one that was saved by the legs of Areola.

But after a slow start, where they continually turned the ball over to Brighton deep in their own half, Fulham fashioned a great chance of their own just before halftime when Ruben Loftus-Cheek won the ball in midfield and released Ivan Cavaleiro.

However, the Portuguese forward blasted his effort into the side-netting after breaking strongly into the box.

The second half saw Brighton dominate possession, but Fulham defended impressively with Joachim Andersen and Tosin Adarabioyo enjoying strong games.

Former Brentford striker Neil Maupay missed a golden opportunity when he raced through on goal 20 minutes from time after a quickly taken free-kick from Alexis MacAllister, but blazed the ball over the bar in what was Brighton’s best chance of the match.

Fulham almost claimed the ultimate smash-and-grab with the final kick of the game in a rare forage out of their own half when the ball fell to Loftus-Cheek in the box, but his well struck effort was brilliantly cleared off the line by Lewis Dunk.

Fulham: Areola, Aina, Andersen, Adebayo, Tete (Bryan 78), Loftus-Cheek, Reed (Lemina 66), Zambo Anguissa, Cavaleiro (Mitrovic 78), De Cordova-Reid, Lookman.
Subs not used: Hector, Kebano, Rodek, Ream, Onomah, Kamara.