10-man Fulham signal intent with thrashing of Huddersfield


London (AFP) – Fulham gave an early indication of their determination to return to the Premier League as they whipped hapless Huddersfield 5-1 despite being reduced to 10 men in the Championship on Saturday.

The Cottagers are top the table after two matches although nine other teams are also on four points.

An Ivan Cavaleiro double late on rounded off a highly satisfactory trip to Yorkshire where their opponents lacked any bite even after Harry Wilson was sent off with 18 minutes remaining.

Victory extended Fulham’s unbeaten run against Huddersfield in second-tier football to 17 matches dating back to April 1984.

Fulham manager Marco Silva said the final result reflected the gap between the two sides.

“We didn’t get what we deserved last week, but we did this week,” said the Portuguese manager.

“We were the best team on the pitch. We had the chances today and got five goals. The performance was good and it is always pleasing to win so emphatically.” 

Former Fulham manager Scott Parker’s club Bournemouth also sit on four points after a 2-1 win over Nottingham Forest.

Parker, who took the job after leaving Fulham by mutual consent, had to sit through a nervous last half hour after first-half goalscorer Wales international David Brooks was red carded.

Bournemouth, though, held on for their first win over their opponents in nine meetings.

Parker described Brooks’s sending off as “very very disappointing” but added he was proud of the resilience the 10-men displayed.

“In this division, you know too well that’s (resilience) what you’ve got to show,” said Parker.

“It’s a relentless league, they put you under pressure a lot and I thought for large parts we did very, very well.”

West Brom, like Fulham relegated last season, have four points too after a 3-2 home win over Luton.

A 10-minute stoppage while Luton’s Jordan Clark was attended to following a collision with West Brom goalkeeper Sam Johnstone meant there was plenty of time added on.

Luton reduced the deficit to 3-2 when Pelly Ruddock-Mpanzu struck with half of time added on remaining but Valerien Ismael’s side held on to take the points.        

Sheffield United, the third of the sides to be relegated last season, will hope to bounce back from an opening day defeat at home to Swansea later on Saturday. 

Wayne Rooney could face a tough season ahead after his Derby side lost 2-1 to Peterborough.

The victors managed by Darren Ferguson, son of Rooney’s former Manchester United handler Alex Ferguson, scored twice in time added on to come from behind and take the points.

“That’s football,” said Rooney. “You don’t keep your concentration you get punished.”

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