Tuesday, January 31, 2023

Joao Felix sees red on debut as Chelsea slump at Fulham

Chelsea’s Joao Felix endured a nightmare debut when he was sent off in a 2-1 Premier League defeat at local rivals Fulham on Thursday to increase the pressure on manager Graham Potter.
The Portugal forward looked sharp one day after completing a loan move from Atletico Madrid but he was shown a straight red card in the 58th minute for a reckless tackle on Fulham defender Kenny Tete when the score was 1-1.
Fulham made the most of the man advantage when Brazilian forward Carlos Vinicius, standing in for the club’s suspended top scorer Aleksandar Mitrovic, put the hosts back in front in the 73rd minute with a clever header.
Former Chelsea winger Willian had put Marco Silva’s side in front in the first half with a deflected shot but Potter’s team levelled early in the second half through a scrappy goal from close range by defender Kalidou Koulibaly.
Kai Havertz had a late chance to equalise with a stinging effort but Fulham goalkeeper Bernd Leno was equal to it and Marco Silva’s side held on to record their first league victory over Chelsea in 17 years.
The win lifted Fulham above Liverpool and up to sixth in the Premier League standings on 31 points after 19 games.
Chelsea, who fell to their eighth league defeat this season and third consecutive loss in all competitions, are 10th in the table on 25 points from 18 matches.
Potter had no complaints about the red card, describing Felix’s challenge on Tete as a “forward’s tackle”.
Fulham manager Marco Silva was happy with his team’s resilience.

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