With the maiden international break of the season now at its end, it was a return to Premier League action for both sides at Craven Cottage. Fulham came home looking for their first home win of the season, while Rob Edwards’ Hatters arrived in West London hunting their first top-flight point.
FUL: Leno; Tete, Diop, Ream, Castagne; Reed, Palhinha; Wilson, Pereira, Willian; Jimenez
LUT: Kaminski; Kabore, Burke, Lockyer, Andersen; Bell, Nakamba, Lokonga; Chong, Morris, Brown
A beautiful afternoon at Craven Cottage began with Luton finding the first chance of the game from a Fulham corner. Tahith Chong raced away on the counterattack, forcing a fine and comfortable save from Bernd Leno.
Fulham’s first chance of the game came courtesy of Harry Wilson, whose teasing cross in from the right found Raul Jimenez, who headed just wide of the near post.
Another close chance for the Cottagers arrived just before the 20th minute, as Andreas Pereira’s corner found the head of Kenny Tete, whose header somehow went over the bar instead of crashing into the back of the net!
Carlton Morris had the best chance of the game so far in the 27th minute, as a lovely cross by Issa Kabore found the striker with his header crashing off the crossbar.
Harry Wilson’s free kick then bounced back off Thomas Kaminski’s near post, with ten minutes of the first half to go.
The second half looked as if it was going to be a case of chances not taken for both sides, until the deadlock was almost broken by Marvelous Nakamba, who saw his header saved at close range by Bernd Leno.
The Whites then had a chance of their own as Pereira’s corner was cleared, but only as far as Timothy Castagne, whose cross back in found Joao Palhinha – but his header floated just over the bar.
The deadlock was finally broken with just over 25 minutes to go, as Fulham’s dominance told at last. Substitute Alex Iwobi found Willian down the left hand side, whose cross found the foot of substitute Carlos Vinicius and the Brazilian smashed the ball home from close range, and incredibly, that would be the way it stayed.
Fulham travel to Crystal Palace on Saturday, while Luton Town must prepare to welcome Wolverhampton Wanderers to Kenilworth Road.