Tom Cairney took just 12 minutes to make a scoring impact for Fulham in midweek, ending a 10-month injury absence.
The midfielder, who had been sidelined with a knee problem, fired the Whites in front as they beat Cardiff City 2-0 on Wednesday.
Cairney had replaced Harrison Reed at the break. Fulham boss Marco Silva said: “You could see how he celebrated the goal, his feelings in that moment. It was a moment that we needed him.”
Aleksandar Mitrovic made sure of the outcome with his 13th goal of the season.
Silva said: “We can take many positives from the game. If we scored earlier, with the chances we had, the game can be different. It’s important in these moments, if you don’t score early, we have to keep being patient.
“We deserved the three points. A clean sheet. And to see a player like Tom come back and help us with the first goal was really important.
“He deserves it after the last few months – so tough, it was important for him to come back and help the team.”
Fulham moved up to second in the Championship table and travel to Nottingham Forest on Sunday.
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