Fulham edge out Forest in five-goal Cottage battle
Fulham prepared for Sunday's high-profile FA Cup tie against Tottenham with a hard-fought 3-2 victory over Nottingham Forest.
Tom Cairney and Lucas Piazon nudged Fulham ahead, after an early Pajtim Kasami effort, before Forest levelled just after the break through Ben Brereton.
But an own goal from Jack Hobbs in the 72nd minute gave the hosts all three points from the Sky Bet Championship clash.
Ross McCormack made his first start for the visitors since leaving Aston Villa for the City Ground last month, and it came coincidentally against one of his former clubs.
Interim manager Gary Brazil also opted for Vladimir Stojkovic in goal to replace Stephen Henderson.
The visitors made an ideal start when after just two minutes Kasami volleyed with his left foot past David Button.
Fulham appeared out of sorts early on, with too many misplaced passes, which caused notable anxiety amongst the home support.
Their play improved and Ryan Sessegnon forced Stojkovic to palm away a shot, before the hosts drew level and then swept ahead.
Sessegnon's pass found captain Cairney to slot home the equaliser on the half-hour mark.
Barely two minutes later Piazon made a fine solo run into the box, with Forest defenders looking flat-footed, to turn the ball past Stojkovic.
Forest were in need of inspiration, and they received it just two minutes after the restart, when Brereton headed home a cross by Daniel Fox.
Kasami nearly gave Forest the lead again just before the hour mark, when after finding space in a crowded penalty area he shot into the side netting.
Fulham made a change as Neeskens Kebano replaced Floyd Ayite.
McCormack put a 20-yard free-kick over the bar after 66 minutes.
Substitute Kebano then caused problems for the Forest defence and looked to strike a loose ball ran into the net, with a deflection seeing it credited as a Hobbs own goal.
The visitors made a triple substitution, with Zach Clough replacing Aaron Tshibola, David Vaughan coming on for Kasami and Britt Assombalonga taking over from Daniel Pinillos.
But Fulham continued to threaten and Kebano came close to adding to the tally of the home side with the last kick of the game.
Source : PA