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The Tanner Report: Fulham 2 Chelsea 1

Fulham won the SW6 bragging rights but the story will be the demise of Chelsea and the future of Graham Potter –  not that Fulham, in 6th place, are now challenging for a Champions League spot.

The turning point was the sending off of Joao Felix for an over-the-ball challenge on Kenny Tete.

Up till then he had been Chelsea’s liveliest forward.

Fulham are a stronger collective than Chelsea – their players play for each other and know their roles on the pitch.

Whether it is the reliable Leno, or the evergreen Tim Ream, the industrious Joao Pahlinha, or Andreas Pereira with his superb delivery, the team is functioning and Chelsea are not.

Chelsea old boy Willian scored the Fulham opener with a deflected shot.

Having spent seven successful years at Chelsea, he chose not to celebrate out of respect.

Perhaps some respect for the club whose shirt he wears – and who rescued his career – would have been more appropriate?

Koulabaly equalised for Chelsea.

Kepa failed to deal with yet another teasing Pereira cross and was stranded, providing Vinicius with an easy header and his first goal at any level for 9 months.

Down to 10 men, Chelsea did not have the stomach for the fight

Because of uncertain rail transport I watched this game in the comfort of my home.

BT Sport’s coverage was appalling.

Two of their panel of so-called experts – Joe Cole and Gary Cahill – were ex-players and the third analyst Peter Crouch more of a self-styled celebrity.

Presenter Jake Humphreys is too gung-ho with little feel for the match issues.

At the end of the game they lost all transmission because their generator failed and BT just played adverts and BT Sport promotions over and over again.

Fulham now have a testing cycle of Newcastle away this Sunday, Spurs at home on Monday week and Chelsea away on Friday 3rd February. The good news is that we will have a rested Alex Mitrovic back and are very much a team in form.

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About Alan Tanner

After a distinguished military service in the Catering Corps, Alan Tanner did well in mufti with his chamois as a window cleaner. Sadly he had to retire after falling from the fifth floor of Danny Murphy's mock Tudor home. He spends his retirement watching and writing about his beloved Fulham whom he has supported for over 50 years. The Alan Tanner Report is sponsored by Tanner Crystal Clear Ltd, Window Cleaners to the Gentry. More Posts