George Rossiter looks back at a heart-breaking defeat at the Etihad.
Fulham fell to the narrowest of defeats at the home of the Champions, with a 95th-minute Erling Haaland penalty handing the 10 men of City all three points after a monster of a fight on the pitch from Marco Silva’s men.
The German must be devastated. A host of phenomenal saves from range, but especially within the six yard box, had kept Fulham in the game both when behind and when level. To see the ball slide under his arm late on would’ve left him gutted as we were as fans, but it was still another very good display between the sticks. 8/10 – Man of the match.
It was good to have Kenny back and playing a full 90 minutes with no complications injury wise. While Fulham played deep and narrow for most of the game, giving lots of space to the City wingers, Tete performed admirably, especially in one-on-one scenarios with Jack Grealish. 7/10
Another solid performance from Diop who continues to prove his place in the side. His height and physicality was evident as he consistently won battles against Alvarez and cleared a multitude of crosses, both from set pieces and from open play. 7/10
Ream proved his ability to play the ball against the press so well against a team that presses potentially better than any other. One or two slight mishaps sneaked in, and although not at fault for the first goal from Alvarez, the ball did come across Ream into the Argentine’s path. 6.5/10
Robinson will be gutted that it was his rash challenge that gave away the penalty in the dying seconds, especially in a position where De Bruyne had his back to goal. The left-back was sound defensively bar that, but struggled getting forward against the high-pressing Guardiola side and proved ineffective creative, a rare occurrence this season. 6/10
As previously mentioned when writing the ratings for the games away to Arsenal and Tottenham, when Fulham play deeper and narrower, you notice less what Palhinha and Reed do individually, but you have to appreciate what they do as a unit, and Joao contributed towards a really solid midfield display against some heavyweight opponents. 7/10
Again, Reed didn’t look out of place against significant opposition. His tenacity in the middle helped form a superb midfield unit in a partnership with Palhinha that continues to blossom. A fifth yellow card means Harrison misses the Man United fixture, he will be a big miss. 7/10
Pereira showed off his typical box of tricks when challenged by the City defence. Even when Fulham played deep, Andreas supported Carlos Vinicius as a second striker, a role he has performed with Mitro for much of the season. Converted the penalty well to level the game. 7/10
This was probably the most encouraging performance from Wilson since returning from injury, looking slightly more threatening going forward against a great standard of opposition, resulting in him winning a penalty. While he is evidently still not 100%, it’s a positive step and hopefully we will see a fully-firing Wilson after the World Cup. 6.5/10
On a pitch full of superstars, Willian didn’t look out of place, something we’ve come to expect with the standards the Brazilian has set since coming into the side. He struggled to effect the game as much with Fulham not attacking the game as much, but his class was there to see nonetheless. 7.5/10
Again, Fulham playing a lot of the game in their own half limited the effect Vinicius could have on the game as he stood in for the injured Aleksandar Mitrovic. However, he took the fight to the City defence, putting his body about when Fulham went long and showing intent to do anything for the team. Hopefully when he’s provided with chances, he’ll put them away. 6.5/10
Dan James (76’ for Harry Wilson)
James added pace when he came on but a lack of game time showed with frequently poor first touches. 5.5/10
Tom Cairney (76’ for Carlos Vinicius)
Didn’t see much of the ball as City bombarded the Fulham box and Fulham had the occasional counters down the wings. 6/10
Kevin Mbabu (80’ for Willian)
A strange cameo on the wing which didn’t quite prevail, it’s clear Mbabu isn’t a forward player. 5.5/10
Luke Harris (88’ for Andreas Pereira)
A proud moment for the academy graduate to come on in such a big occasion for him, and he didn’t look out of place during his brief spell on the pitch. 6/10