Fulham are denied by Brighton comeback

[/media-credit] Aleksandar Mitrović scored Fulham’s second goal

Brighton 2 Fulham 2

Glenn Murray scored a second-half brace as Brighton battled from two goals down to deny Fulham.

The veteran striker equalised with a late penalty at the Amex Stadium, having halved the deficit with 23 minutes remaining.

Fulham, whose goalkeeper Marcus Bettinelli saved a first-half spot-kick from Pascal Gross, looked on course for victory after goals from Andre Schurrle and in-form forward Aleksandar Mitrovic either side of the break put them in control.

It was the first top-flight meeting between the two clubs and Fulham handed a first league start to centre-back Alfie Mawson.

Albion began positively by pinning the visitors back and forcing a succession of corners. And they had a golden opportunity for a 25th-minute opener.

Murray, whose offside position in the build-up briefly bamboozled Fulham’s backline, was brought down by Luciano Vietto as he turned in the box following good work from Anthony Knockaert.

German midfielder Gross stepped up to take the resultant penalty but his placed effort at the end of a stuttering run-up was tipped wide of the left post by Bettinelli.

Fulham had lost their five previous meetings with Albion and, without injured captain Tom Cairney, were second best in the first-half sunshine.

[/media-credit] Andre Schurrle scored shortly before half-time

Slavisa Jokanovic’s side did offer some attacking intent though and went ahead two minutes before the break.

Jean Michael Seri produced a delightful dinked through-ball and fellow summer signing Schurrle raced clear to calmly slip his second goal in as many games past Mathew Ryan.

The away side started the second period in the ascendancy but should have been pegged back with 56 minutes played.

Winger Solly March was sent clean through on goal by Davy Propper’s pass but his wayward shot flew over Bettinelli’s crossbar, prompting groans from the frustrated home fans and an angry response from Albion boss Chris Hughton.

The Whites then took advantage of the poor finishing and some hesitant defending to double their advantage six minutes later.

Dunk’s dithering led to him being dispossessed by Mitrovic and, after his initial attempt was repelled by Ryan, the Serbia international smashed home his fourth league goal of the season in front of the jubilant travelling supporters.

Fulham needed to take the pace out of the game but their defence was carved wide open by Knockaert as the Seagulls quickly pulled one back.

French winger Knockaert ran with the ball from the right and then slipped the ball to unmarked striker Murray, who finished through the legs of Bettinelli.

Fulham had looked like joining Manchester City, Liverpool, Chelsea and Leicester on the shortlist of teams to have left the Amex with three Premier League points, but they had to settle for a draw after Mitrovic went from hero to villain.

The summer signing from Newcastle was penalised for handball by referee Lee Probert and Murray coolly sent Bettinelli the wrong way from the spot, finishing powerfully into the left of the net six minutes from time.

Fulham: Bettinelli, Fosu-Mensah, Odoi, Mawson, Le Marchand, Seri, McDonald, Anguissa, Schurrle (Chambers 87), Mitrovic, Vietto (Sessegnon 74).
Subs not used: Fabri, Johansen, Christie, Bryan, Kamara.