Aleksandar Mitrovic had a late penalty saved as Fulham played out a goalless draw with Wolves at Molineux.
The Serb striker – who scored twice in a 2-2 draw against Liverpool last weekend – was denied by home goalkeeper Jose Sa with 10 minutes left after Rayan Ait-Nouri had brought down Bobby Decordova-Reid.
Bruno Lage’s Wolves, beaten 2-1 at Leeds on an opening day, have now not won in nine Premier League matches, with their last top-flight victory on 2 April.
Yet they started brightly against newly promoted Fulham, and Pedro Neto and Hwang Hee-chan saw almost identical chances on the left-hand side – supplied by the lively Daniel Podence – saved by Fulham keeper Marek Rodak.
Fulham should have taken the lead in the first half after Andreas Pereira’s corner found Decordova-Reid unmarked for a header but new Wolves captain Ruben Neves made a heroic goalline clearance.
The Cottagers almost gifted the home team a goal a few moments later following a mix-up in defence between Rodak and Tosin Adarabioyo, but neither Neto nor Podence could capitalise on the mistake.
Mitrovic had been quiet for most of the game and his only chance of note prior to the penalty was a ballooned shot into the stands during the first 45 minutes.
The frustration following his weak spot-kick, however, boiled over as a challenge on Morgan Gibson-White led to the pair squaring up to each other and both receiving a booking in added time.
Lage opted to keep new £27.5m signing Goncalo Guedes on the bench against Fulham, rather than place Wolves’ search for goals completely on the former Valencia forward’s shoulders.
The home crowd were given encouraging signs that this could be the day their fortunes changed as Fulham’s left flank was targeted with success in the opening exchanges by Podence, plus neat play between Neto and South Korean Hwang.
But for all Wolves’ hard work, they could not find a way past Rodak and more chances were squandered in the second half. Ait-Nouri played a tantalising ball into the Fulham box for Gibson-White to slide in and slot home but the midfielder skied his effort over the bar.
One win and one draw for Fulham on their return to the Premier League would have been welcomed by most of the club’s supporters but boss Marco Silva will be left disappointed that full points were not secured at Molineux.
Despite not performing as tenaciously as they did against Jurgen Klopp’s Reds, there was a positive feel at the final whistle that the Championship winners can still get something out of a game when not playing at their best.
And if Mitrovic’s penalty had beaten Sa, he would have equalled his tally from the Cottagers’ last season in the top flight in 2020-21 – when he scored just three all season.
source – BBC