Dec 26 (Reuters) - FULHAM 1 WOLVERHAMPTON WANDERERS 1
Romain Saiss bundled home from close range to earn Wolverhampton Wanderers a 1-1 draw at Fulham on Wednesday and deny Claudio Ranieri’s side their first win in six Premier League matches.
Substitute Ryan Sessegnon struck to give the London side hope of three points as they fought to move off the bottom of the table, but Saiss’s 85th-minute equaliser left Fulham 19th before Huddersfield’s trip to Manchester United.
Claudio Ranieri’s side showed defensive steel as they battled for a second consecutive clean sheet after achieving their first in a goalless draw at Newcastle United on Saturday, but eventually caved in.
“When a team is bottom, everything goes against this team. We are stronger than this, we want to react in every circumstance,” Ranieri told reporters.
“If you continue to fight you can change (the situation), if you lose hope, you lose everything. I believe in my players and I believe we can make something good this season.”
Fulham came closer in a tight first half with Aleksandar Mitrovic a constant thorn in Wolves’s side, but Rui Patricio was alert to beat away the Serbian’s strike after he wormed free in the area.
Sessegnon made the breakthrough for Fulham seven minutes after being introduced as a substitute, volleying in after Rui Patricio tried to punch the ball away.
With five at the back Fulham looked more able to withstand pressure than earlier in the season but Saiss levelled after Ivan Cavaleiro’s cross sat up for him at the back post with Joe Bryan unable to clear the ball.
Fulham nearly snatched a late victory but Wolves captain Conor Coady hacked a late Mitrovic effort off the line to leave his side in mid-table.
“We’re adult enough to know that today was not our best performance, everybody has to realise that,” Wolves coach Nuno Espirito Santo said.
“I felt in the first half we didn’t perform, we were surprised that Fulham dropped so deep and were so organised. The line-up was not the best choice for the game.
“In the second half we played better, we controlled the ball, we made chances.”
Editing by Ed Osmond