Fulham’s runaway charge to the Sky Bet Championship title was checked as West Brom outplayed them to win 1-0 at the Hawthorns.
Callum Robinson’s 63rd-minute goal was scant reward for a dominant performance from the Baggies, who won at home for the first time under new manager SteveBruce.
Defeat for Fulham was only their second in 14 Championship games, and ended a run of 10 away league games unbeaten from October 2, 2021 when they lost 4-1 at Coventry.
The Cottagers failed to score for the first time in 2022 – 14 league games – and the last time they failed to find the net in the Championship was December 20.
West Brom dominated the first half so much that they left the field to a standing ovation from their supporters, and it was a similar story after the break.
Chances came swiftly and easily. Conor Townsend’s deep cross was met by Taylor Gardner-Hickman and his header deflected wide off Antonee Robinson.
The Baggies continued to threaten and Karlan Grant flashed a low, angled shot into the side-netting after Robinson threaded him behind Fulham’s defence.
Callum Robinson’s goal was enough to inflict defeat on leaders Fulham
West Brom threatened with a more direct route as Darnell Furlong’s throw-in flicked off Semi Ajayi into the arms of goalkeeper Marek Rodak.
The hosts had a penalty appeal waved aside in the 28th minute when Harrison Reed made no contact with a bouncing ball but clipped Alex Mowatt as he tried to control it.
West Brom continued to control the game and grew in confidence, forcing successive saves from Rodak.
First the Slovakian goalkeeper blocked Grant’s shot with his legs after a hooked pass from Robinson, whose effort went the same way after cutting inside Tosin Adarabioyo.
The half ended with Rodak pushing away a cross from Townsend before cheers greeted the half-time whistle.
West Brom continued where they left off, starting the second half with a glancing header from Grant smothered by Rodak.
Fulham’s first threat of any kind did not come until the 56th minute when Fabio Carvalho cut inside from the left and sent a low, curling effort skidding just wide.
Harry Wilson curled fractionally wide from just inside the box as Fulham finally started to come into the game.
But any momentum they had gained vanished as West Brom took a deserved lead.
Antonee Robinson carelessly gave the ball away to Grant, who threaded Callum Robinson through to slot past Rodak from a tight angle.
Aleksandar Mitrovic and Nathaniel Chalobah both sent efforts wide for the visitors but it was not Fulham’s night.