Aleksandar Mitrovic scored his first goal in club football for six months on Wednesday night.

Making a second start in four days for loan club Fulham, Mitrovic gave the visitors the lead as the fifth placed Cottagers travelled to sixth placed Bristol City.

An excellent ball across the box saw Mitro finish from close range after 14 minutes, only for the home side to equalise and the game to end 1-1.

The result keeps Fulham firmly in fifth place and set for the play-offs, as they are eight points adrift now of automatic promotion.

Just as on Saturday when Mitrovic helped Fulham to a 2-0 win over John Terry and Aston Villa, once again the Newcastle loan player was subbed in the later stages as lack of regular football means he is still not at full match fitness to see out games.

Also once again, Fulham boss Slavisa Jokanovic was full of praise for the striker.

He described the match as ‘a battle’ and was happy to have Mitro on his side and ‘I’m very pleased with what I have seen of him so far.’

Whilst it was a physical game and a handful of yellow cards were handed out, Mitrovic is still to get a card after four appearances for Fulham.

Slavisa Jokanovic:

 “It was a battle tonight.

“Sometimes I wasn’t sure what a foul was, because so much was happening, but we do not complain about referees.”

“Mitrovic needs time on the pitch but I’m very pleased with what I have seen of him so far.

“He offers us something different and will contribute even more in time.

“I am happy with all my players because they gave everything.

“Sometimes you cannot play the football you want to in matches and that was the case tonight.

“When that happens you have to show something else.

“The whole team displayed the right attitude and I don’t want to single out anyone because it would not be fair.

“We are in a good place at the moment and can look ahead with confidence.”

  • ghostrider

    I’m over the moon for the lad. I hope he goes on a massive scoring spree and gets Fulham promotion, then I hope he gets a move to wherever he wants at the end of the season seeing how Rafa doesn’t want him.

    • Anita kick up the Hoop

      He will score goals but to get the very best from him it’s his all round game .. his link play and hold up game that you have to take advantage of … I’m sure he will develop into a very effective player under the right manager and with the right game plan … the sad thing for me is that we should have harnessed his and Gayle’s qualities during our championship campaign and built a partnership that was ready to hit the ground running on our return to the premiership… we missed a trick and wasted the lad … I’d love to see him prove his worth in our colours.

      • Dont stop bobbi fleckman

        Agree with that, an old fashioned little and large up front.

  • Wor Lass

    I`m very surprised andd disappointed at Mitro`s loss of form. Still, I expect he`ll get fitter and he`ll soon be able to catch his opponents and ease himself back into those yellow cards. The reds`ll follow close behind.

    • Rich Lawson

      Shirt off in the picture above,instant yellow card !

    • Mike Adam

      I expect he won’t. Mitro was never given the chance to get into form under Rafa, and when he did, Rafa took him out just as he does with many players.

  • Mrkgw

    All he needed was an opportunity and a Manager that believed in him. Note that Rafa – but don’t you worry, as you consider Joselu to be an adequate upgrade. This could be a very costly decision.

    • East Durham Mag

      Maybe he has found his level?

      • thewildchimp

        He scored more goals for us in the Prem under McClaren than in the Championship under Benitez. I wouldn’t say it’s Mitro’s fault entirely.

      • Mrkgw

        Not so sure of that as, Rafa didn’t give him much of a chance in the Championship. Remember, he scored a few for us in his debut Premiership season – a time when h was in theory finding his feet. A few red cards were unfortunately the by product. He even scored in the rout vs a very good Spurs side. Personally, i think that he would have done a very good job for us had Rafa not dug his heels in. I like Rafa but, he got this decision woefully wrong in my opinion. For that, he lost an ounce of credibility.

  • Damon Horner

    sadly this lad is just going to be The Mag clickbait by the looks of it.

  • Gareth Marshall

    Mitro was simply at the wrong club at the wrong time. I’m sure Benitez respects him but Mitro just doesn’t fit into his system.

    I’m sure he will go on to have a decent if not spectacular career away from Newcastle and I’m convinced it won’t be long until he is a thorn in our side.

    • Damon Horner

      Agree,There is a setup that would work very well for him I think, just don’t think we have the right players therefore tactical approach for him to flourish.

  • TheFatController

    That looks like the league Dwight Gayle was prolific in, yes?

    • Pelican

      Which is why Benitez wouldn’t loan him to a Premier League club, yes?

  • Paul Patterson

    Found his level I’m afraid . .

    • Mrkgw

      No, have to disagree Paul. As I have said below, he scored more goals for us in his first Premiership season than Joselu has. Gayle for that matter. Rafa did him no favours and expect him to make it with a decent club that believes in him. Sadly, the circus at our club let the player down.

      • Damon Horner

        Break it down mate.

        Goals by the end of Feb:
        JOS – 4 Total.
        MIT – 5 Total (1 Pen).

        Since Feb.

        Mitrovic scored off the bench against Norwich and Sunderland (two teams who have since slipped to the Championship level) and in that final game against Spurs, he also scored a second penalty.

        He had a suspension that season and featured in 34 games, so in terms of bench/starts he played in nearly all of the games, Joselu has missed 5 (so just under 20% of games).

        Most fans don’t feel Joselu is good enough to lead the line but that to me doesn’t sound like Mitrovic is an option who is undeniably better than Joselu, probably an improvement admittedly but if we survive and the reality being as it is then I would say it’s not really a huge error from the manager to not make him first choice.

        Good we can have different opinions but I reckon the lad has a bit more to prove, as does Gayle and Joselu to show what they’re capable of, Mitrovic has untapped potential in his favour but the same was said for a while about Shola.

        • Clarko

          Mitrovic – 10 goals and 4 assists, a goal every 227 minutes in the Premier League, a goal contribution every 162 minutes in the Premier League.

          Joselu – 8 goals and 3 assists, a goal every 325 minutes in the Premier League, a goal contribution every 236 minutes in thePremier League.

          • Damon Horner

            Awesome. Now put Joselu in with a team of internationals for top nations and see if his record improves. Mitrovic has had penalty goals and better players to support his record, I stand by the opinion he is not a clearly better option, clearly being the key word.

          • Clarko

            “Now put Joselu in with a team of internationals for top nations and see if his record improves. Mitrovic has had penalty goals and better players to support his record”

            Are you talking about the team of internationals that got relegated? The team where a 20 year old Mitrovic joined, with no Premier League experience and was expected to lead the line?

            What about the 22 appearances Joselu made for Stoke, a team of internationals that did not get relegated, would they not have supported his record?

            All variables considered, Mitrovic has a better record than Joselu.

          • Damon Horner

            Nobody is denying he has a better record than Joselu, nobody really rates Joselu.

            I’m doubting his suitability and reliability to lead the line for us and consider his record to be just marginally better than Joselu, not enough to warrant this to be considered a major mistake.

          • Clarko

            But your entire argument was based on record and Mitrovic has a significantly, not “marginally” better record, a goal every 227 minutes compared to a goal every 325 minutes, that’s a 35.5% difference.

          • Mrkgw

            Damon/Clarko, interesting facts, very much in favour of Mitro. Rafa has irked me over his stubborness which has cost us a really good prospect. That has been the Managers major flaw for me. Supporters rightly celebrate the Man Utd victory when in reality, it came about through Rafa loosening the shackles and allowing the players to perform instead of being stiffled during games. I’m in favour of him don’t get me wrong but cautiously.

          • Damon Horner

            which is a lot in terms of % but if you quantify it based upon their actual output. It is around (sorry no actual numbers) 4 contributions per season based on playing every minute. Consider 2 of Mitrovic’s were penalties which flatters his numbers then it looks marginal to me. They won’t play every minute though because Mitrovic has committed three acts which have received suspension within PL games. His actual contribution is only marginally better than Joselu. Not a huge managerial error and neither are showing impressive PL stats. Therefore Paul’s fair in his own assessment.

          • Clarko

            Has Joselu taken a penalty for Newcastle? How did that go? You cannot discount or try to discredit penalties, it’s a skill, it’s the equivalent of trying to discredit open goals or goals scored via a deflection, a goal is a goal.

            The percentage difference is still the same whether you’re talking minutes or goals, that’s the magic of percentages, it’s still a 35.5% difference, it’s still a significant difference, you need to stop using the word marginal, it’s just not true.

            “They won’t play every minute though because Mitrovic has committed three acts which have received suspension within PL games”. And Joselu has missed games through injury. When they play, who scores more? Mitrovic.

            I believe 227 minutes per goal in the Premier League is impressive and that’s without considering his age and the teams he has played in during his time in the Premier League.

          • Colin Brumwell

            Not with today’s news

          • Damon Horner

            Sadly, you’re right. Joselu it is then

          • Mike Adam

            For the record:
            Slimani on the trainer’s table.
            Mitro on the pitch making plays
            A better option now, really Damon???

          • Damon Horner


          • Mike Adam

            Wrong again! I thought Clarko made that really clear.

          • Damon Horner

            The best quality striker we’ve had on our books lately is injured and you sound happy that it makes loaning Mitrovic look a worse decision. Personally I think you should be feeling nervous than smug.

          • Mike Adam

            So you say. On our books and unable to play! The best striker we had all season was not played by the manager, that is, was, and always will be my point. I am not smug about anything, I simply have several opinions that are different from the manager’s and your’s.

  • Viru leckworth

    So many opinions on Mitro. I mostly remember the chances he missed.