Fulham lose to Championship leaders Brighton

Fulham 1 Brighton 2

Fulham conceded twice in three minutes during the second half as the new Championship leaders took the points at Craven Cottage.

Stefan Johansen missed an early penalty but the Whites got the goal their dominance deserved 10 minutes after the break, Chelsea loanee Lucas Piazon placing a shot past ex-Fulham keeper David Stockdale.

However, Brighton were awarded a penalty of their own when Ragnar Sigurdsson was adjudged to have brought down Tomer Hemed, who converted the spot-kick.

And their comeback was completed by centre-back Lewis Dunk, who headed home after Anthony Knockaert’s shot was saved.

Fulham were again without Chris Martin, who remains keen to return to parent club Derby, with Matt Smith making his first start since September.

They posed Brighton’s defence problems before being given the chance to take the lead when Seagulls full-back Bruno inexplicably handled as he tried to control a deep cross.

However, Stockdale – six years a Fulham player until he left to join Brighton in 2014 – was equal to Johansen’s poor penalty.

Brighton failed to muster a shot on target in the first half and the Whites took the lead 10 minutes after the break as Tom Cairney picked out Piazon with a clever pass, and the Brazilian guided the ball into the far corner.

Knockaert drilled over as Albion threatened an instant reply, but they did not equalise until 73 minutes, when substitute Hemed was deemed to have been knocked off his stride by Sigurdsson.

Hemed netted the penalty himself and Brighton took advantage of some hesitant Fulham defending to go in front, Dunk on hand to net the rebound after David Button had blocked Knockaert’s effort.

Fulham: Button; Fredericks, Sigurdsson, Ream, Malone; McDonald (Kebano 88), Johansen; Aluko, Cairney, Piazon (Odoi 79); Smith (Humphrys 68).
Subs not used: Bettinelli, Sessegnon, Parker, Edun.