Fulham ease past nine-man Crystal Palace

Fulham capitalised on Crystal Palace having two players sent off to stroll to a 3-0 away win in their first Premier League match after the World Cup.

Bobby De Cordova-Reid, Tim Ream and Aleksandar Mitrovic were on target for Fulham. Palace had Tyrick Mitchell sent off in the first half and James Tomkins followed him down the tunnel in the second after a second booking.

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The victory moved Fulham to 22 points after 16 games while Palace lie 11th on 19 points after 15 matches.

Palace striker Jordan Ayew hit the bar with the first big chance of the game. Then Fulham struck, De Cordova-Reid glancing in a cross from Mitrovic after a sloppy pass from Joachim Andersen was intercepted.

Moments later Palace's fortunes unravelled further when Mitchell was shown a straight red card for a reckless tackle on Kenny Tete. Tomkins's second yellow card came for pushing Mitrovic over.

Fulham took full advantage of having two extra players as Ream doubled their lead - scoring his first Premier League goal at the age of 35 - by rifling into the roof of the net following a knockdown by Mitrovic.

To the relief of US international Ream, referee Andrew Madley decided to award the goal after a VAR review despite the ball having hit Mitrovic's hand.

Mitrovic then got the reward that his all-action performance deserved, heading in a cross from Willian in the 80th minute to take his tally for the season to 10 league goals.

"It was the best possible way to start the season again," Mitrovic told Amazon Prime.

"They had the two red cards but even before the first we dominated the game and scored the goal. The red cards made it easy but we were really good all over the pitch."

Before kickoff there was a minute of applause in tribute to former Fulham defender George Cohen, a member of England's World Cup-winning team of 1966 who died last week aged 83.