Parker praises devastating Fulham after emphatic win over Reading

Fulham head coach Scott Parker praised his side for producing a devastating opening 30 minutes in their 4-1 romp over 10-man Reading.

Skipper Tom Cairney gave Fulham an early lead, with Reading then losing midfielder John Swift to a red card after picking up two yellows.

Leading goalscorer Aleksandar Mitrovic struck twice from close range – also before the half-hour mark – to give Fulham a 3-0 interval advantage.

Cairney struck again in the second half, with Yakou Meite firing in a consolation effort for Reading in the 89th minute.

Fulham moved up to fourth place in the Sky Bet Championship with the win and Parker said: “I was delighted with the performance.

“I’ve been delighted with the performances over the past four or five weeks but the results have been missing a little bit.

“That’s what most people usually look at and I understand that. But tonight, I thought that we were first class from start to finish.

“In the first 30 minutes, we were devastating – even though they had a man sent off.

“But, prior to that, I felt that we had really stamped our authority on the game and showed our quality.

“We’re going to be a team very hard to deal with in the first 20 or 30 minutes. Even when Reading had 11 men, it was still difficult for them.

“We moved the ball very quickly and with an intensity. And we were really clinical in the final third.

“Over the past few weeks, we’ve worked a lot on getting that cutting edge about us.”

Lowly Reading fell to their fourth league defeat in five outings.

“We faced a very strong team with many Premier League players,” manager Jose Gomes said.

“We started the game with the best chance and could have scored but we then conceded after one mistake.

“After we had one player less, the problem was even bigger.

“But in the first half, we still should have been more aggressive in the way we pressed the opponent with the ball.

“In the second half, it was difficult but we did much better. We showed good character and spirit.”

Of Swift’s dismissal, Gomes said: “John is one of the best players in the Championship but he’s not an aggressive player.

“In both situations, he tried to play the ball. With the first, it was near the [Fulham] bench and their people talked a lot. It looked more serious [the tackle] than it really was.

“With the second, John slipped. Before the start of the game, it rained a lot. The pitch was full of water.”

Gomes does not fear for his job and added: “All managers in football are under pressure. We must learn and face this pressure. I’m not concerned about my position.”

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Football Paradise Staff Reporter

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