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Two Willian penalties edge Fulham past Wolves in five-goal thriller

27 Nov 2023
Willian, Fulham

Fulham earn first win in five matches thanks to Brazilian's double and Iwobi's first PL goal for the club

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Two Willian penalties, including one deep into second-half stoppage time, edged Fulham past Wolverhampton Wanderers, winning 3-2 at Craven Cottage to claim their first victory in five Premier League matches.

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How the match unfolded

Marco Silva made two changes from the side that lost 3-1 at Aston Villa, with Harrison Reed starting in place of the suspended Joao Palhinha, while Tom Cairney replaced Bobby De Cordova-Reid. The average age of Fulham’s starting line-up was 30 years and 36 days, the oldest of any Premier League XI this season.

There was one change to the Wolves team that beat Spurs 2-1, meanwhile, with Santiago Bueno handed his Premier League debut in place of the suspended Craig Dawson.

Fulham went in front after only seven minutes, with Alex Iwobi flicking in from Antonee Robinson’s cutback to score his first Premier League goal for the club.

Hwang Hee-chan almost equalised against the run of the play seven minutes later, but his shot crashed against the crossbar and clear.

But Wolves grew into the contest and levelled in the 22nd minute through Matheus Cunha.

Jean-Ricner Bellegarde did well to beat Robinson down the right flank and his cross was headed in powerfully at the far post by Cunha.

Four of Cunha’s five Premier League goals have come away from home, including each of the last four.

Fulham retook the lead in the 59th minute through Willian’s first penalty, awarded for a foul by Nelson Semedo on Cairney. 

Iwobi missed a great opportunity to make it 3-1 following a mix-up between Toti Gomes and Bueno, but his shot was well-saved by Jose Sa

Wolves were then awarded a penalty for a foul by Tim Ream on Hwang. 

The South Korean slammed his spot-kick down the middle for his seventh league goal of the season, Wolves equalising for the second time in the match with 15 minutes remaining.

The drama under the lights was not over as, following a VAR Review, with referee Michael Salisbury sent over to the Referee Review Area, a third penalty was awarded following Joao Gomes’ foul on Harry Wilson.

Willian beat Sa again from the spot to make it 3-2 in the fourth minute of added time. The Brazilian has now scored all seven of his Premier League penalties, with only Yaya Toure, Dimitar Berbatov and Ruben Neves having better 100 per cent records from the spot in the competition’s history.

Hwang had once last chance to bring Wolves level for a third time, but he blazed his shot over the crossbar as Fulham held on for their third home win of the season.

It moves the Cottagers level with Wolves on 15 points from 13 matches played.

Fulham report | Wolves report

Premier League

Position Pos Club Played Pl GD Points Pts
10 Wolverhampton Wanderers WOL 27 -3 38
11 Chelsea CHE 26 +1 36
12 Fulham FUL 27 -3 35
13 Bournemouth BOU 25 -14 28
14 Crystal Palace CRY 27 -15 28

Did you know?

Today was just the second time a Premier League game has seen three second-half penalties scored in the Premier League after Everton against Newcastle United in September 2003 (also 3).

Fulham have now won each of their last 11 Premier League games at Craven Cottage in which they’ve scored the game’s opening goal since a 2-2 draw with Liverpool on the opening day of the 2022/23 campaign.

Alex Iwobi scored his first Premier League goal for Fulham and his fourth against Wolves in the competition, at least twice as many as against any other side.

Hwang Hee-chan is just the seventh different Wolves player to reach 15 goals in the Premier League, while as a team, Wolves have scored each of their last 20 penalties in the competition, the first side to score at least 20 successive spot-kicks in the Premier League since Liverpool in December 2021, with 21.

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