Silva rues ‘sloppy’ Fulham defending

Marco Silva admitted Fulham paid the price for some “sloppy” defending in their 2-1 home defeat against Aston Villa.

The Whites put their opponents under pressure after Rodrigo Muniz pulled a goal back, but were unable to find an equaliser.

In the build-up to the opening goal, Fulham lost possession after Willian was played into trouble, and were punished when Jacob Ramsey won the ball and it then fell to Ollie Watkins, who finished emphatically.

And for the second goal, Youri Tielemans’ pass carved the home side open and Watkins got away from Issa Diop and slotted home.

Boss Silva said his side “100%” deserved a point after clawing their way back into the game following Watkins’ brace.

But he added: “The first goal we conceded had a big impact in the game and gave them the confidence that they could control the game.

“Until that moment, the game was really balanced, not any team on the front foot really, both teams respecting themselves and with a plan.

“I think we reacted well at the beginning of the second half. We had some dangerous moments, we were trying to control the game, playing more in our offensive half, but we cannot concede goals the way we did this afternoon.

“I think we were really punished by that second goal. Really sloppy, the way we defended that moment, and was like a big punch on ourselves, the second goal.

“The reaction after the moment that we scored for 2-1 completely lifted ourselves and it was a completely different team.”

Meanwhile, João Palhinha faces a two-match ban after picking up his 10th yellow card of the season.

“We have quality inside our squad to replace him,” Silva insisted.