A late first-half penalty from Cole Palmer helped Chelsea secure a 1-0 victory over Fulham in the Premier League – and extend their unbeaten run at Stamford Bridge to eight matches in all competitions.
The Blues were the better side across the 90 minutes, struck the woodwork twice, and forced Fulham goalkeeper Bernd Leno into several good stops. Yet the difference on the scoreboard was Palmer’s penalty.
It was awarded just before the interval as Raheem Sterling tricked his way into the penalty box and was brought down by Issa Diop. Palmer stepped up and, once again, converted what proved to be the match-winner.
Pochettino made just one change to the side that started the Carabao Cup semi-final first leg against Middlesbrough.
Armando Broja returned to the attack in place of Noni Madueke, who was on a substitutes’ bench that included the returning Ben Chilwell and Carney Chukwuemeka.
On a chilly afternoon at Stamford Bridge, a composed start was required. Chelsea delivered. The Blues dominated possession in the opening exchanges and threatened the Fulham goal.
Conor Gallagher had the first effort of the afternoon – a shot from distance that cleared the crossbar – before Broja guided a header narrowly wide from a well-delivered Enzo Fernandez cross.