Written by Morgan Lecomber
Fulham claimed just their 2nd home league win of the season as they thumped Huddersfield Town 5-0 and climbed into the top half of the Sky Bet Championship.
Fulham hadn’t won at home since the opening day of the season and they looked to put that right as they welcomed David Wagner’s Huddersfield Town to Craven Cottage on Saturday.
2,700+ Terriers fans were in attendance as Town aimed for back to back wins since the 1st of October.
But it wasn’t long before Huddersfield were behind, just 8 minutes on the clock when Stefan Johansen curled in a deep free kick to the far post which caused chaos for the Town defence, Ragner Sigurdsson nodded the ball back to the free Chris Martin who had enough time to take a touch before sliding it past the helpless Danny Ward to put the Cottagers in front.
Town were 2nd best to everything in the opening minutes, Aaron Mooy and Dean Whitehead had the ball at their feet on a number of occasions but the midfielders couldn’t supply the killer pass to their teammates.
Huddersfield had to wait until the 25 minute mark before they cut open the Fulham defence, Nahki Wells collected a diagonal ball superbly before setting himself up for the shot but right back Ryan Fredericks managed to get back just in time to slide the ball out for a corner.
The set piece was whipped in by Town left-back Chris Löwe who picked out Tommy Smith at the back post but he failed to hit the target with his header and the ball drifted wide of the goal.
Moments later Town were made to pay for the missed chances, as Christopher Schindler failed to head clear a cross into the box from the left which fell to Löwe who miscued the ball to on loan Chelsea centre back Tom Kalas and he calmly struck home to double Fulham’s advantage and score his 1st since arriving at the club.
Just as Town thought it couldn’t get any worse it was 3-0. On the stroke of half time, The Nigerian forward Sone Aluko raced down the left beating two Huddersfield defenders and curled in a perfect cross towards Lucas Piazon who couldn’t miss with a simple header from only a few yards out.
Harry Bunn could’ve reduced the arrears in stoppage time of the first half but he somehow headed Kasey Palmer’s cross wide of the goal.
Many felt the game was up for Town as the teams walked down the tunnel for the break. Huddersfield fans couldn’t quite believe what they had witnessed as they tried to muster an explanation to what went wrong.
David Wagner surprisingly made no changes at the break, as the same 11 trudged back out onto the field to make an attempt to find a way back into a game that looked like it had already been lost.
Town did start the 2nd period a little brighter, Kasey Palmer weaved past two Fulham players before taking a shot on the turn which forced a smart reflex save from David Button to keep Huddersfield at bay.
The Town fans behind the goal decided to make the most of their trip to Craven Cottage by breaking into the tune of ‘blue and white army’ as they lifted a few spirits of the folk from Yorkshire.
Unfortunately all hope of a rare comeback was ended in the 63rd minute when Town gave a sloppy penalty away as Schindler fouled Aluko, Martin stepped up to make it 4 and put the cherry on the top of a fantastic home victory the Fulham faithful needed.
Fulham were enjoying themselves and they made it 5-0 only three minutes later when troublemaker Aluko cut inside from the right to pick out Kevin McDonald who finished well.
This didn’t stop the Town fans from singing though, who supported their sorry Huddersfield side right until the whistle blew to condemn Town to a third defeat in four after an embarrassing afternoon of football.
Fulham didn’t need to play outstanding to brush over the shambolic Huddersfield but they did put a solid performance in, well worthy of 3 points. The win pushes the cottages back into the top half and 3 more points off the playoffs.
Town could only be described as diabolical right the way through. Definitely the worst game I have seen under David Wagner and many expect changes will be made to the side that face Birmingham at the John Smith’s Stadium on Saturday. Town remain third with 28 points but with a -1 goal difference after the humiliation of Fulham.
Fulham: David Button 7, Ryan Fredericks 8, Ragnar Sigurdsson 8, Tom Kalas 9, Scott Malone 8, Kevin McDonald 8, Stefan Johansen 8, Tom Cairney 7, Sone Aluko 9, Lucas Piazon 9, Chris Martin 9.
Substitutes: Floyd Ayité 7, Tim Ream 7, Scott Parker N/A.
Huddersfield: Danny Ward 5, Tommy Smith 6, Mark Hudson 5, Christopher Schindler 5, Chris Löwe 5, Dean Whitehead 6, Aaron Mooy 6, Harry Bunn 6, Kasey Palmer 6, Elias Kachunga 6, Nahki Wells 6.
Substitutes: Jack Payne 7, Tareiq Holmes-Dennis 7, Martin Cranie 6.
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featured image by dom fellowes