Fulham 1-1 Derby - 18-Nov-2017 : Match Report

18 November 2017
Derby fail to take top-six chance

Derby missed an opportunity to break into the top six of the Sky Bet Championship as they were held to a 1-1 draw at Fulham.

The Cottagers took the lead through Oliver Norwood, before Matej Vydra equalised in the second half.

Fulham manager Slavisa Jokanovic gave a league debut to Adetayo Edun, who trained with the England senior squad last week, while captain Tom Cairney returned after a knee injury.

Gary Rowett resisted the temptation to start Chris Martin against his old club, preferring to stick with David Nugent in attack.

Neither team created a clear-cut opening in the first 10 minutes, although the hosts had the first attempt after 14 minutes.

A floated cross into the box by Norwood found the head of Floyd Ayite, whose flicked header was saved spectacularly by Derby goalkeeper Scott Carson.

Fulham had the bulk of possession, forcing a number of corners, while the visitors seemed stuck in their own half.

The West Londoners deservedly took the lead on the half-hour mark when Norwood fired a free-kick on the edge of the box over the wall and past Carson.

Derby finished the half on the back foot and were forced to be defensive after the restart as their opponents looked for an early second goal.

However, it was the visitors who struck next. Tom Lawrence collected the ball and was able to run towards the Fulham goal without being challenged. His flick to Vydra was enough for the Czech to slot home past David Button.

The goal perked up a previously flat Derby side, with Nugent seeing his 55th-minute effort matched by Button.

Fulham made two substitutions, with Rui Fonte and Edun making way for Aboubakar Kamara and Luca de la Torre respectively.

American De la Torre almost netted with his first touch in the 65th minute but his header from an Ayite cross went just over the crossbar.

Derby made a double substitution, with Andreas Weimann replacing the injured Bradley Johnson, and Vydra making way for Martin, who was subjected to boos from the home fans after refusing to play against Reading last season.

Fulham applied pressure late on, with Ayite placing a 79th-minute effort high over the bar.

But they could not find a winner, meaning the hosts extended their run to six games without a victory and only one win at Craven Cottage in nine attempts.