Alex Iwobi and Raul Jimenez scored doubles as Fulham heaped the pressure on Nottingham Forest boss Steve Cooper with a 5-0 Premier League victory at Craven Cottage.

Tom Cairney also found the net to ensure the Cottagers bounced back from their late disappointment at Anfield on Sunday and condemned struggling Forest to a fourth consecutive defeat.

A scrappy opening period offered little until Forest midfielder Nicolas Dominguez produced a quality pass into the feet of Divock Origi, who tested Bernd Leno from range in the 17th minute.

Fulham took time to warm up after Sunday’s 4-3 agonising defeat at Liverpool.

Andreas Pereira almost opened the scoring in the 26th minute.

The Brazilian stood over a set-piece and used a whipped technique which narrowly missed the inside of Odysseas Vlachodimos’ post.

And not long after Fulham converted a chance to take a 1-0 lead in the 30th minute.

Willian produced a moment of genius when he jinked inside onto his right foot and produced a perfect back-post cross to Iwobi, who avoided his marker to tap home from close range.

The Cottagers had the bit between their teeth and scored a second in the 34th minute.

A well-timed challenge in midfield by Joao Palhinha saw Iwobi combine with Pereira before he slipped in Jimenez and the striker rifled his effort into the top corner.

The Mexican, who had struggled for goals earlier in the season, looked full of confidence.

On the stroke of half-time Iwobi nearly grabbed a second when he did well to turn on the edge of the box before producing a curled effort from range which almost nestled into the top corner.

Forest forward Anthony Elanga ran the ball out of play in the 51st minute which summed up a dull showing from the visitors.

Iwobi’s dominating performance got even better when the Nigeria international produced a dangerous cross which was slightly too high for the rising Jimenez.

But moments later, in the 54th minute, Jimenez took his chance and grabbed his second of the match.

The creative Pereira found Jimenez and he brought it down on his chest and rounded Vlachodimos before finishing with a deft backheel into the empty net.

Fulham grabbed a fourth through Iwobi after 73 minutes.

Harry Wilson found space down the byline and his cutback found the winger who finished first time to grab his brace.

Cairney got in on the action to make it 5-0 after 86 minutes.

The skipper wandered into acres of space through the middle of Forest’s backline and calmly stroked home.

What the papers say

Bayern Munich will face stiff competition in their pursuit off Fulham midfielder Joao Palhinha, 28. The Daily Telegraph reports at least two Premier League sides are watching the Portuguese player ahead of the January transfer window.

Arsenal are eyeing a move for Juventus youngster Kenan Yildiz, according to The Sun via Turkish-Football. The 18-year-old moved from Bayern Munich in the summer and earned his first Turkish call-up in October.

Jadon Sancho remains on course for a January exit from Manchester United. The Daily Mirror reports the England winger, 23, is “training like a beast” to prepare for the transfer window.

Social media round-upPlayers to watch

Douglas Luiz: Aston Villa have put a £110million price tag on the midfielder to fend off interest, according to Football Transfers with Arsenal leading the pursuers.

Samuel Iling-Junior: Tottenham and Newcastle are interested in the English winger, 20, with Juventus making him available, according to Italian publication Tuttomercatoweb.

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp hailed their dramatic late 4-3 Premier League win over Fulham as a “game you will never forget” after his side scored twice in the final four minutes of normal time.

The hosts looked to be heading for a first Anfield defeat since February – when Real Madrid, no less, were victorious – only for Wataru Endo and Trent Alexander-Arnold to snatch an 11th-successive home win this season.

It was just reward for Alexander-Arnold, Liverpool’s vice-captain, as his brilliant free-kick to open the score was credited as a Bernd Leno own goal after the ball went in via the underside of the crossbar and the goalkeeper.

Alexis Mac Allister’s first goal for the club since his move from Brighton in the summer was even better – a rising 30-yard drive into the top corner to re-establish their lead after former Liverpool forward Harry Wilson had equalised.

But more shaky defending allowed Kenny Tete to make it 2-2 before half-time and substitute Bobby De Cordova-Reid thought he had snatched three points in the 80th minute, only for Liverpool to produce a late rally.

“The feeling after the game was exceptional. During the game it was slightly different in moments,” said Klopp.

“I told the boys after the game turned out, the game we saw, because we were a bit dumb.

“But at 3-3 everyone could see the boys wanted more and because we were a bit lucky today, we got it.

“An outstanding experience for everyone who was here. I don’t think anyone would have thought before the game that Liverpool v Fulham will be a game that you will never forget in your life. But… you’re welcome.

“I never saw a competitive game with this amount of ‘worldies’. Trent’s free-kick: unbelievable. Macca, before the game you could see his foot was right today and I thought today, ‘You better try it’ and he obviously thought the same.”

The win was not without setbacks however with centre-back Joel Matip expected to be sidelined for some time with a knee problem.

“We lost today Joel and we have obviously no scan yet but after all you hear and can see that will not be a short one. Unlucky, but we have to get through this,” added Klopp.

Fulham boss Marco Silva saw his side end the week having scored six times in two Premier League matches – after just 10 in their previous 12 – and was frustrated not to have got something from their trip to Anfield.

“Clearly we deserved much more from the game than what we took,” he said.

“To come to Anfield and play the way we did – twice we scored to equalise – and then at the end of the second half to be able to score a great team goal and be leading is not an easy thing.

“We know the game is never 100 per cent under control against these types of sides and these types of crowds but the game was more or less under control.

“(Then) one long ball, a good second ball from them and another great finish from the edge of the box and in that moment I knew it was the end of the match.”

Liverpool staged a dramatic late comeback to beat Fulham 4-3 after some hapless defending wasted two world-class strikes from Trent Alexander-Arnold and Alexis Mac Allister and left them staring at a rare Anfield defeat.

The Cottagers looked like being the first side since Real Madrid in February to win at Anfield – and the first in the Premier League since Leeds in October 2022 – after substitute Bobby De Cordova-Reid’s 80th-minute goal.

However, Japan international Wataru Endo, who had spoken on the eve of the game about how difficult he had found the top flight since his arrival in the summer, sparked the comeback when he stroked home the equaliser seven minutes later.

When Alexander-Arnold grabbed his second of the game barely a minute later, Liverpool’s 100 per cent home record was extended to 11 matches to move back to within two points of leaders Arsenal.

While thrilling, it was an unnecessary end to a game which the hosts should have controlled much better, especially after the quality of the early goals they scored.

Fulham were operating with a compromised goalkeeper after Bernd Leno played almost 100 minutes with a bandaged head having being injured in an eighth-minute incident which saw Mohamed Salah’s goal ruled out for offside after spilling Dominik Szoboszlai’s shot.

But while Liverpool had plenty of attempts on goal, Leno was not properly threatened until it became last-chance saloon territory.

The problem was at the other end where they allowed a team averaging just one Premier League goal a game all season to score three times away for the first time since April – also on Merseyside at Everton.

Either of Alexander-Arnold’s or Mac Allister’s goals were worthy match-winners and the fact they were not will have been of considerable frustration to both players and boss Jurgen Klopp.

A trip on Szoboszlai 25 yards out was all the invitation Alexander-Arnold needed as he dispatched a 25-yard free-kick – Liverpool’s 50th of the season – via the underside of the crossbar.

It had all appeared so easy to that point and part of the problem was a team showing six changes from the midweek win over LASK struggled to get out of second gear.

Worryingly for Klopp, at the start of December it seemed his side lacked the energy needed to properly dominate opponents but even Fulham’s unexpected equaliser four minutes later failed to provide the wake-up call.

Their right side was exposed with Alexander-Arnold central covering for Virgil Van Dijk, who was returning from a run upfield, and former Red Harry Wilson squeezed a near-post shot under Caoimhin Kelleher from Antonee Robinson’s cross from the Cottagers’ first attempt on goal.

Retaking the lead in brilliant fashion was only a small part of what was required from the home side.

Luis Diaz’s mazy run caused issues and Kenny Tete’s poor clearance was compounded by Raul Jimenez’s poor header back into the danger area and Mac Allister’s path.

The Argentina international allowed the ball to bounce across his body before unleashing a rising drive which found the same top corner Alexander-Arnold had: his first Liverpool goal and a worthy 500th at Anfield in Klopp’s 219th game at the ground.

Jimenez and Tete made amends with the former flicking on a near-post corner for the latter to nod past Kelleher, making his first Premier League start of the season for the injured Alisson and although he was flagged offside, VAR overruled.

The assistant’s flag did come to Liverpool’s rescue, however, deep into added time when Kelleher kept alive Joao Palhinha’s header and an offside Tim Ream tapped in.

Leno’s legs denied Salah just before interval and although Klopp’s side increased the tempo after the break, the same problems remained with Darwin Nunez’s shot deflected behind and Szoboszlai firing wide from the subsequent corner.

Nunez had yet another game where his contribution was minimal and he smashed an angled drive against the crossbar and also bundled the ball wide after twice being set up by Salah.

Then came the sucker punch as substitute De Cordova-Reid out-jumped Kostas Tsimikas at the far post.

Endo had a header saved and Salah fired over the rebound before the Japan international stroked home the equaliser, setting up Alexander-Arnold to deliver the killer blow.

VAR will have to be removed from football if officials cannot find ways to use the technology more effectively, says former England midfielder Darren Anderton.

The use of video assistant referees has come under the spotlight this season, with a series of high-profile errors marring games in the Premier League and across Europe.

In September, Luis Diaz was incorrectly denied a goal in Liverpool's loss to Tottenham due to a "significant human error" which refereeing body Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL) subsequently apologised for.

Meanwhile, Mikel Arteta made headlines when he described the decision to allow Newcastle United's winning goal against Arsenal as a "disgrace", while Wolves boss Gary O'Neil said he had "finally turned against VAR" on Monday after Fulham were awarded two highly contentious penalties against his team.

There was also controversy in the Champions League on Tuesday as Newcastle's Tino Livramento was harshly penalised for handball, allowing Kylian Mbappe to score a stoppage-time equaliser from the spot as Paris Saint-Germain rescued a 1-1 draw against the Magpies.

While Anderton believes VAR was brought in for the right reasons, he cited frustrating delays after goals and repeated mistakes as reasons why many wish to see the back of it.  

"I would have [liked VAR] in the FA Cup semi-final in 1993 when I got brought down!" Anderton, who was part of a Tottenham side beaten by Arsenal on that occasion, told Stats Perform.

"I think it's a good thing and the idea of it is good, to make the right decisions, but it's not happening and that's a problem. 

"There is nothing better than scoring a goal and you should be able to celebrate it and not worry that it's going to be chalked off.

"I feel like it's almost at a point now that whenever there's a goal scored, you're looking for something for it to be ruled out. I think that's sad. 

"I think that's sad for players to have to be that way because the adrenaline of scoring a goal in a Premier League game or for your country... there is no better feeling. 

"If it's taken away, it's taken away, but when you've got to stand there for three minutes, four minutes, you've got to be able to celebrate those moments. They're what you play the game for. 

"So unless it gets better, they're going to have to get rid of it, and that's wrong, because you do want the right decisions in football games."

While the International Football Association Board (IFAB) has been discussing expanding VAR's remit to include other incidents such as yellow cards and corners, Anderton has a different idea.

He suggested VAR should be part of a challenge system similar to that used in the NFL, saying: "I don't know whether you just go to a point where now, like in American football, managers get a challenge. 

"You get two or three challenges in the match so it doesn't become a hundred-minute football match. It's pretty crazy, and it's frustrating to watch. I'm with everyone on that."

What the papers say

Former Chelsea striker Timo Werner has emerged as a January target for Manchester United, according to the Metro. But the paper says the 27-year-old German international would prefer to fight for his place at RB Leipzig.

United are looking to add depth in four positions in the transfer window according to The Guardian. Defensive midfielder is one area targeted, while France defender Raphael Varane, 30, is among those who could be making way for any new arrivals.

Fulham are keen on Chelsea striker Armando Broja, 22, in January, reports The Standard. But the Blues want to keep the Albanian at Stamford Bridge.

Arsenal and Rangers are competing for the signature of England Under-17 forward Mason Cotcher, reports the Daily Telegraph. The 17-year-old has been training with the first-team squad at Arsenal since leaving Sunderland.

Social media round-upPlayers to watch

Guido Rodriguez: Manchester United and Barcelona are keen on the Argentina midfielder, 29, but Marca says Real Betis remain hopeful of keeping him.

Donyell Malen: Borussia Dortmund’s Dutch international winger, 24, remains a target for Liverpool, according to Bild.

Gary O’Neil asked “what is the point in VAR?” after his Wolves side conceded a controversial late penalty during a 3-2 defeat at Craven Cottage.

VAR sent referee Michael Salisbury to the screen to award a penalty after Joao Gomes brought Harry Wilson down in the box, Willian scoring his second spot kick of the game to seal all three points for Fulham.

O’Neil highlighted the decisions involving the late penalty, Carlos Vinicius’ alleged headbutt on Max Kilman and why Tim Ream did not receive a second yellow for a foul on Hwan Hee-Chang.

The Wolves boss criticised the decisions during the game and believes VAR has not helped the referee.

O’Neil said: “I don’t think it’s helped the game,

“I think the ref would have done a better job on his own. I don’t think VAR helped him but in fact it hindered him.

“Sending him to the screen for one and not to the other, not advising him there is a headbutt or that Tim Ream should receive a red card. What is the point in VAR?

“They said they got the Harry Wilson one right (last penalty decision). There’s minimal contact and I don’t think there’s enough.”

O’Neil, who spoke to the referee after the match, also felt aggrieved about Fulham’s first penalty awarded for a foul by Nelson Semedo on Tom Cairney.

He told Sky Sports: “Nelson plays the ball, doesn’t touch Tom Cairney. I watched it back with the referee, and to be fair to him he says he thinks they’ve got that wrong and he should have been sent to the monitor.”

Fulham boss Marco Silva lauded his side’s mentality to end a run of four games without a win and to go ahead in the game on three separate occasions.

He said: “We knew Wolves would show resilience tonight again and they brought it back twice and we showed team spirit and I really believed we deserved three points.

“It is important to express ourselves on the pitch. We had some very good spells in some times in the game.

“But the mentality, team spirit and it was a game we had to win and we did it.”

Willian scored his second and third of the season from the spot and Silva praised the experienced 35-year-old.

“He is really important for us and we know the quality of Willian,” Silva added.

“My decision last season to change the taker because he is a player who needs more importance and confidence and it was nice to see him take responsibility with two very good moments from him.

“Overall his performance was very good. Two chances he must score and he did it in very good style, I must say.”

Gary O’Neil admitted Wolves’ 3-2 defeat at Fulham may have ‘finally turned him against VAR’ following a number of controversial calls.

Willian scored two penalties – including a stoppage-time winner – at Craven Cottage, while Alex Iwobi’s early strike was cancelled out by Matheus Cunha and Wolves’ Hwang Hee-chan also scored from the spot.

The Cottagers won their first penalty after Tom Cairney beat Nelson Semedo to the ball and was brought down in the box, and a VAR check ruled the incident to have happened inside the area, with Willian stuttering in his run-up and sending Jose Sa the wrong way

After reviewing the decision with referee Michael Salisbury after the match, O’Neil told Sky Sports: “Nelson plays the ball, doesn’t touch Tom Cairney. I watched it back with the referee, and to be fair to him he says he thinks they’ve got that wrong and he should have been sent to the monitor.

“Doesn’t help me. It doesn’t help all the fans that have travelled all this way to watch the team. Doesn’t help the players who are feeling frustrated again. The Nelson one has pretty much been admitted by the referee that (there was) a mistake.”

Willian’s winner sparked more debate, O’Neil maintaining the second penalty, issued after Joao Gomes was deemed to have brought down Harry Wilson in the box, was “soft”, but Salisbury in that case stood by his decision to ultimately award the penalty – the result of VAR Stuart Attwell encouraging him to check the pitchside monitor.

O’Neil, who has seen his side emerge on the wrong end of decisions before, said: “It’s bad luck that it keeps going against us, but there are bad refereeing decisions in there.

“I’ve had a real grown-up conversation in there with him, I’m trying to remain calm. I’m not angry with anybody. I’m not in there abusing people. It’s literally a conversation around, ‘come on, guys, it’s six, seven points now that have gone against us, I’m managing a big football club here, and the difference that you’re making to my reputation, to the club’s progression up the league, to people’s livelihoods is huge’.

“It can’t be that with all the technology and all the time and the biggest league in the world that we’re getting so many wrong. It can’t be OK.

“I’ve always been for VAR but I think it’s causing a big problem at the moment. Maybe tonight has finally turned me against VAR when I thought it would probably help, but it doesn’t seem to be.”

Fulham boss Marco Silva, meanwhile, was relieved to have secured a first victory in five matches.

He told Sky Sports: “It’s a really important win for us. We wanted a reaction from the last, back-to-back defeats. Of course it is always tough for us. It is something that we are not used to.

“I really wanted to see that quality, that intensity, the pace, the will to go. The team showed very good spirit. Overall it was a balanced game but we were always trying to do more to win than Wolves, I believe.”

Willian completed his brace with a dramatic stoppage-time winner from the penalty spot as Fulham held off Wolves to claim all three points in a thrilling 3-2 victory at Craven Cottage.

The experienced 35-year-old scored two penalties, while Alex Iwobi’s early strike was cancelled out by Matheus Cunha and Wolves’ Hwang Hee-chan also netted from the spot.

The winger’s double took his tally to three for the season as the Cottagers claimed their first victory in four games.

A golden chance was presented to the hosts after 40 seconds. The creative Andreas Pereira whipped a dangerous ball into the box and Fulham striker Raul Jimenez swung his boot but failed to convert his second in as many games.

But Pereira’s efforts were rewarded in the seventh minute when he set up the opening goal of the game.

The Brazilian was everywhere. He drifted onto the left before he beat his marker and delivered another perfect drilled low pass, this time to the alert Iwobi who gave Fulham a deserved 1-0 lead.

The Cottagers looked to strike again through Jimenez, who failed to tap home before Wolves keeper Jose Sa denied Tom Cairney’s powerful effort moments later.

Wolves grew into the game and were unfortunate not to score a goal of their own.

Mario Lemina started positively against his old side and drove forward before unleashing Korean striker Hwang, who was denied by the crossbar.

And Wolves got the goal they needed in the 22nd minute through Cunha after a magical moment of individual play in the build-up.

It started through tricky Frenchman Jean-Ricner Bellegarde, who toyed with Antonee Robinson on the left flank, before he jinked outside and delivered a delightful cross to the head of Cunha in front of the empty net.

The minutes before the goal suggested it was coming and Marco Silva’s side yet again paid the price for not taking their chances.

Individual mistakes were a big theme of the first half and goalkeeper Bernd Leno was called into action after a defensive error in the 36th minute where Timothy Castagne dealt with a cross which would have seen Cunha claim his second at the back post.

Cunha started Wolves’ first big chance in the second half when he slipped strike partner Hwang wide but his cross to Matt Doherty was kept out of danger by Castagne, who replicated his earlier heroics.

But typical of the end-to-end game, Fulham won a penalty after Cairney beat Nelson Semedo to the ball and was brought down in the box.

A VAR check ruled the incident to have happened inside the area and Willian stuttered in his run-up and sent Sa the wrong way, stroking his effort into the bottom right corner to restore Fulham’s lead.

A deft flick on from Jimenez set Iwobi through but the Nigeria international was denied his brace by Sa who tipped his effort over before the Wolves keeper stopped another effort not long after to keep his side in the contest with 20 to go.

And Wolves converted a penalty of their own in the 75th minute through Hwang.

Fulham skipper Tim Ream bundled Hwang to the ground and the striker stepped up and blasted his effort down the middle to make it 2-2 in front of Wolves’ travelling supporters.

In dramatic fashion Fulham won another penalty in added time after Joao Gomes was deemed to have brought down Harry Wilson in the box.

The clinical Willian calmly stepped up and buried his effort past Sa to give the hosts an important 3-2 win.

What the papers say

The Evening Standard reports Fulham are ahead of Liverpool and Manchester United in the battle to sign Fluminense’s 22-year-old Brazil midfielder Andre.

The same newspaper says Fulham have also showed interest in 24-year-old Denmark striker Jonas Wind, who has scored eight goals in 11 matches so far for Bundesliga side Wolfsburg.

The Daily Star reports there could be a cleanout at Manchester United next year with the possibility of 15 players leaving the Premier League club. The first player out the door is rumoured to be 23-year-old Jadon Sancho.

Social media round-upPlayers to watch

Dominic Calvert-Lewin: Newcastle are reportedly monitoring the 26-year-old Everton striker, TeamTalk reports. The England forward has scored three goals in nine games for the Toffees in the Premier League this season.

Santiago Gimenez: Football Transfers reports Chelsea are interested in the 22-year-old Feyenoord striker, who has scored 13 goals in 12 games so far for the Dutch club this season.

Aston Villa boss Unai Emery has heaped praise on skipper John McGinn, describing the midfielder as a “very good example” for other players.

Sunday’s 3-1 home win over Fulham saw McGinn put Villa 2-0 up just before the interval with a fine strike from 20 yards, then help create the hosts’ third, scored by Ollie Watkins in the 64th minute.

The Scotland international has netted three times and provided two assists for fifth-placed Villa in the Premier League so far this term and has also scored twice in the Europa Conference League.

Emery said of McGinn, who has been with the club since 2018: “He is himself very demanding.

“He is competitive, he always is ready to play, physically as well. I think when he is not training or playing he is resting – his energy always is full.

“He is a very good example, of how he is consistent and trying to help and to be an example, a very good example for players.

“I really, really appreciate a lot as a person how he is, but as a professional, he is fantastic.

“His connection here, his commitment here for a long time, with the supporters, with Aston Villa, with the project that is here, and he came here when they were in the Championship…I think he’s one of the players I really appreciate and really need to be an example for others.”

The result at Villa Park meant Emery’s side – a point outside the top four and only three off the top – made it six wins out of six at home in the league this season and equal the post-war club record for successive top-flight home victories, matching the 13 in a row achieved in 1983.

Prior to McGinn and Watkins’ efforts, the hosts had taken the lead in the 27th minute via an Antonee Robinson own goal.

Fulham reduced the deficit with 20 minutes of normal time to go when Raul Jimenez, who had seen a shot tipped against a post by Emiliano Martinez early in the second half, opened his account for the club.

It was a first league goal for the Mexico international, signed from Wolves in the summer, since March 2022.

Fulham boss Marco Silva, whose side are 16th in the table after a third defeat in four league games, said the goal would be a weight off Jimenez’s shoulders.

He said: “For sure it’s going to be not so heavy for the next time that he’s going to be on the pitch.

“It’s a tough one, it’s a long time without scoring in the Premier League. Unfortunately for us, it didn’t give the chance for us to add points with his goal.

“But I’m sure if he keeps working like he’s doing, and trying to do his best, and we keep delivering for him as well, in the future he’s going to score (goals) that can count towards points for us.”

Jimenez, whose former club are Fulham’s first opponents after the international break, told the Cottagers’ official website: “Of course it’s always nice to score my first goal in the Premier League in a long time, and first goal for Fulham.

“I’m really happy for that, but obviously the result is not what we wanted and I want to keep doing this, keep scoring, and help the team to get better.

“This needs to be the goal that opens the bottle. I need to keep going and it’s going to be a special game for me, that next game (against Wolves), and I want to do my best.”

Unai Emery stressed the importance of Aston Villa remaining consistent as the season goes on after the 3-1 win over Fulham.

The result at Villa Park saw the midlands outfit make it six wins out of six at home in the Premier League this season and equal the post-war club record for successive top-flight home victories, matching the 13 in a row achieved in 1983.

Boss Emery, whose fifth-placed side are a point outside the top four, said: “We are now (on league match) 12 – there are still 26 matches to play.

“It’s a lot and of course to be consistent is the most important thing, when you are trying to build and to create a team and a structure and mentality.

“It’s the reason of course we can maintain the position like we are now, but it’s going to be very difficult and a challenge. We are going to face each match trying to focus (on) it.

“Now we are in the top five, it’s I think a moment to enjoy, to be happy – and to try to analyse, even now winning, how we can improve, how we can keep being consistent.”

Marking a return to winning ways in the league after last Sunday’s 2-0 loss at Nottingham Forest, this result was a second home triumph in four days for Villa, with Emery’s men having defeated AZ Alkmaar 2-1 in the Europa Conference League on Thursday to leave them on the brink of qualifying from their group.

They were two up at the break against Fulham following an Antonee Robinson own-goal and a 42nd-minute strike from skipper John McGinn, while Ollie Watkins subsequently added a third in the 64th minute for his 11th goal of the season in all competitions.

Raul Jimenez, who had seen a shot tipped against a post by Emiliano Martinez early in the second half, pulled a goal back for the visitors in the 70th minute – the former Wolves man’s first Premier League goal since March 2022.

Emery said: “At home, we are feeling very good here. We are connected with our supporters, trying to (have) full, positive energy, and… in each circumstance we are trying to adapt, improving the team, the players, our tactical work. I think it is going well.

“Here, for example, I think the first half was a very good first half. We created chances, but overall we controlled the game, avoiding the transition. It was fantastic.

“The second half was more hard. They scored one goal, had chances and were trying to work, thinking about the possibility to come back, and we avoided it.”

Villa resume after the international break with away games against Tottenham and Bournemouth, either side of a Europa Conference League home match against Legia Warsaw, and then host Manchester City and Arsenal in the league.

Emery added: “Of course I am happy and I can take my days off as well relaxing with the result we had, with the moment we are now in the table, and in the Conference (League) as well.

“But I know full well each match is a new challenge, and I am going to take some days resting, but of course my mind is in Tottenham, and in Bournemouth, and in Legia Warsaw, and in Villa Park again with Manchester City and Arsenal.”

Aston Villa registered their 13th Premier League home win on the bounce as Unai Emery’s men beat Fulham 3-1.

Villa were two goals up at the break following an Antonee Robinson own-goal and a strike from skipper John McGinn.

Fulham came close early in the second half when Emiliano Martinez tipped a Raul Jimenez shot against a post before Ollie Watkins added a third for the hosts with a 64th-minute finish.

Jimenez pulled a goal back for the visitors, but Villa were not to be denied as they equalled the post-war club record for successive top-flight home victories, matching the 13 in a row achieved in 1983.

Emery’s side have scored at least three times in each of their Villa Park wins this season, with the total being 23 goals for the midlands outfit across the six games.

It was also a return to winning ways in the league after last Sunday’s 2-0 loss at Nottingham Forest, since when they had defeated AZ Alkmaar 2-1 at home in the Europa Conference League.

While fifth-placed Villa are a point outside the top four, Marco Silva’s Fulham are 16th after their winless run in the league extended to a fourth game.

The home side made a lively start to the contest and after Moussa Diaby had a sixth-minute effort saved by Bernd Leno, another Villa attack moments later saw Watkins’ shot come off Timothy Castagne and referee Simon Hooper award a penalty.

However, VAR intervened and with Hooper having surveyed footage pitchside, the handball decision was overturned.

Martinez was then called into action to keep out an Andreas Pereira strike, although the flag was up for offside, before Emery’s men pushed forward again and took the lead in the 27th minute.

Youri Tielemans, making his first league start for Villa, curled a delivery from the left towards Diaby and the ball went off Robinson into the net – the defender’s second own-goal of the season, having also scored one in Fulham’s win against Sheffield United last month.

As Villa sought a second, Matty Cash was denied by Leno, and the advantage was doubled in the 42nd minute as McGinn collected the ball from a Robinson header, took a touch to move away from Joao Palhinha and fired in from just outside the box.

Fulham started well after the interval and almost reduced the deficit three minutes in when a Martinez touch diverted Jimenez’s strike against a post, with Willian shooting over on the follow-up.

There was also a shot just wide of the near post from Willian, but soon after Villa made it 3-0 as Leon Bailey, just off the bench, crossed and Watkins sidefooted in his 11th club goal of the season in all competitions.

Jimenez produced a similar finish, teed up by Robinson in the 70th minute, to open his Fulham account – his first Premier League goal since March 2022.

Substitute Carlos Vinicius thought he had scored another for Fulham in the 81st minute when he went around Martinez and slotted in, but he was flagged offside, before the ball hit the Fulham bar off Palhinha and Watkins headed the loose ball wide when looking certain to score – a surprising miss that mattered little come the final whistle.

Bruno Fernandes fired home an injury-time winner to secure a much-needed victory for Manchester United at Fulham.

United came into the Craven Cottage clash under a cloud after the midweek Carabao Cup defeat at home to Newcastle.

They were quiet for long periods of the game but a moment of brilliance from skipper Fernandes, who came in for criticism from former United players after the Newcastle loss, gave manager Erik ten Hag a welcome three points.

Fernandes evaded attempts to close him down on the edge of the penalty area before placing his shot beyond Fulham keeper Bernd Leno.

United thought they had taken a 1-0 lead after eight minutes but VAR ruled out Scott McTominay’s effort for offside.

The Scot tapped in Alejandro Garnacho’s cut back but referee John Brooks overturned the goal after VAR ruled Harry Maguire had interfered with play from an offside position.

The decision was a wake-up call for the hosts who were looking to build on Wednesday’s last-16 3-1 Carabao Cup victory at Ipswich.

Craven Cottage was fired up and Willian dragged the Cottagers up the pitch with a slaloming run but his effort was blocked at the last moment.

The Brazilian was Fulham’s main creative outlet in the final third and in the 27th minute he produced a delightful cross, but, in keeping with Fulham’s season so far, no striker was there to finish at the back post.

Nigeria international Alex Iwobi marauded from his own half into United’s box but was wasteful in front of goal, failing to hit the target.

The hangover from United’s back-to-back 3-0 home defeats against Manchester City and Newcastle was clear to see as ten Hag’s side lacked intensity, with Fernandes’ skewed added time cross summing up their first-half efforts.

The visitors searched for a way into the game after halftime through Garnacho who enjoyed touches in promising areas before a dangerous cross was tipped over by Leno.

Momentum shifted in Fulham’s favour on the hour. Iwobi picked out Harry Wilson who tried from range with a powerful outside of the boot effort but he was denied by United keeper Andre Onana.

The Cottagers also came close from the following set-piece when last week’s goal scorer Joao Palhinha failed to keep his effort down as Onana made another save to maintain the deadlock.

The minutes ebbed away and substitutions from both sides sapped the games’ intensity before Fernandes’ free-kick in the 83rd minute gave United hope late on.

The Portuguese midfielder had not been heavily involved but showed what he is capable of when he struck a dipped free-kick towards Leno’s bottom corner and the Fulham keeper did well to prevent United edging in front.

But there was no denying Fernandes in added time. He combined with Rasmus Hojlund and jinked inside onto his preferred right foot before unleashing a powerful shot that proved too much for Leno, who could only palm it into his bottom corner.

Marcus Rashford was not included in Manchester United’s squad for the game at Fulham.

The England striker was forced to apologise to United boss Erik ten Hag after attending a nightclub party following last weekend’s embarrassing derby defeat to Manchester City.

But Rashford was missing at Craven Cottage due to injury after taking a “heavy knock” in training.

Reports emerged the day after the City match that the England international, who turned 26 on Tuesday, had gone to the Chinawhite nightclub for a pre-arranged birthday party hours after the Old Trafford loss.

“Yes, I am aware of it,” manager Ten Hag said of Rashford’s post-derby night out.

“I spoke with him about it. It’s unacceptable, I told him, he apologised and that’s it. For the rest it’s an internal matter.

“He’s very motivated to put things right. So, he makes a mistake, but that doesn’t say he’s not fitting in. I see him every day in training, what he’s doing, I know.”

Following the team announcement at Craven Cottage, Ten Hag told MUTV: “(Rashford) is OK, but not OK to start. He is not fit enough to start but it is about players who are available.

“(Alejandro) Garnacho can do the job very well, we have seen that often so I am confident.”

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