Given that this is the first match of the season and that there are a lot of new faces, I decided to do player ratings – for the first time. With our dear editor Tuckster away on holidays, I`m sure he will be looking forward to any type of content.
City fought well in a very keenly contested clash. Getting away with a draw after 88 minutes seems a good reward for a spirited performance. The game started very open and could have easily ended 5-5, with plenty of chances for both teams.
Angus Gunn (7/10): Solid debut for Gunny, not much to do in the goal after a tricky deflection from Russell Martin. Lucky not to concede in the second half.
James Husband (5/10): Often beaten during the first half on a very leaky City left side. Improved later in the game when they went to four at the back and was successfully supported by Watkins at the rear. A bit more expected from him going forward.
Christoph Zimmermann (8/10): A towering presence at the back, often sweeping for others, made at least three crucial interventions. Showed composure and stature. Seems tailored for the Championship.
Marcel Franke (7/10): Decent debut. Had a bit of trouble synchronizing with Husband whilst marking a speedy Fulham right side. Not as impressive as Zimmermann but did the job.
Russell Martin (6/10): Had the misfortune to score an own goal. Did not participate in the elaboration as much as his head coach would have wanted. Not blaming the captain, but many possessions ended up in a Gunn punt.
Yanic Wildschut (7/10): Apart from not bringing his shooting boots, a good all-round match from the Dutch winger converted to wing back. Had a couple of spirited runs down the right side, one of which should have ended in a goal by Watkins. Played in a more familiar advanced role in the second half. Seems he could be a useful asset for a long Championship season.
Harrison Reed (7/10): Key man in the middle disrupting the opposition. Had his hands full containing Tom Cairney and Oliver Norwood.
Mario Vrancic (6/10): Pulled the strings well in the first half, but seemed outmuscled at times. Adjusting to the Championship.
James Maddison (7/10): Tried hard to make things happen down a very congested middle of the pitch. A couple of good link-ups, pushed his team forward with attitude in the closing stages of the match. Deployed deeper than he is used to.
Marley Watkins (7/10): Should have scored at least one goal in the first half. Battled and fought well upfront, winning headers and closing on the opposition`s defenders. A very good tactical display.
Cameron Jerome (6/10): Had a hard time finding the ball in the first half. Farke seems to value his high work rate.
Wes Hoolahan (7/10): That superb pass. Played enough to make the difference.
Nelson Oliveira (7/10): Scored with a brilliant finish in the closing stages of a very difficult test. A great epilogue for a day at Craven Cottage the travelling faithful won`t forget. Farke later played down the meaning of his exacerbated celebration.
Josh Murphy (6/10): Had half a chance with a volley that ended up in the Thames.
Man of the Match: Cristoph Zimmermann.
Team Average: 6.64