Ryan Tunnicliffe hit the bar as Fulham struggled to find a breakthrough against Sheffield United in the first half of their Capital One Cup second round tie.
The midfielder, who replaced the absent Jamie O’Hara as one of three changes, smashed a half-volley against the woodwork from distance on 12 minutes.
The hosts had an early scare when Martyn Woolford, one of 10 changes for the Blades, forced Andy Lonergan to tip a long-range shot round his left-hand post.
But the Whites enjoyed a 15-minute spell of dominance that included Tunnicliffe’s effort and saw Moussa Dembele almost find the far corner with a low shot from an acute angle.
United had two further efforts that Lonergan saved before the break, with Marc McNulty forcing the keeper quickly down to his right to stop a firm effort.
Manager Kit Symons handed new signing Tim Ream his debut in place of the injured Shaun Hutchinson, while an illness kept out O’Hara and Tom Cairney dropped to the bench to give Ben Pringle a start.
Fulham (4-2-2):Lonergan; Richards, Ream, Burn, Voser; Kacaniklic, Tunnicliffe, Christensen, Pringle; McCormack, Dembele
Subs: Lewis, Bodurov, Cairney, Woodrow, Hyndman, Kavanagh, Cole