Championship pace-setters Fulham strengthened their claim to be English football's most potent attacking force right now as they won a second consecutive match by a 6-2 scoreline, with Birmingham City their victims on this occasion.
The scoring was opened with an own-goal from Blues defender Marc Roberts but Neeskens Kebano, Fabio Carvalho and Tom Cairney all got in on the act before half-time; as did Ivan Sunjic who scored an impressive consolation on the cusp of the break.
Gary Gardner then made it 4-2 with another good goal for the visitors, but the comeback was soon stopped in its tracks as Carvalho and Antonee Robinson added Fulham's fifth and sixth respectively. The only surprise of the evening was that arch marksman Aleksandar Mitrovic — who still has one more goal to his name than Birmingham so far this campaign — failed to get in on the act.
Fulham head coach Marco Silva addressed the media after the match — these were hist most noteworthy quotes.
On another emphatic result
It's no wonder Fulham were so confidently free-flowing in attack on Tuesday night: they came into the encounter off the back of another 6-2 thumping of Bristol City on the weekend, which in turned followed up their second 7-0 victory of the season over Reading about a week ago.
It appears the Championship simply can't cope with the quality Silva has managed to cultivate from this team in forward areas — and that's despite the fact that the Portuguese head coach feels his side weren't at their very best on the night.
"Very good result for us," he said. "Fantastic score again; was not our best performance. But for us as a team, and for me as a manager, even if we don't perform at our best level, we showed the capacity to create chances, score goals, and to have some very good attacking moments and show our quality."
On preserving fitness
With games coming thick and fast — and with an especially busy second-half of the season on the horizon due to previous postponements — keeping enough energy in his players' tanks is a major priority for Silva at the moment.
As such, goalscorers Kebano and Cairney as well as Harrison Reed were the players he chose to substitute off: the latter two are particularly important due to the absence of Jean Michael Seri in midfield.
And the head coach asserts that their chosen replacements — Bobby Decordova-Reid, Josh Onomah and Nathaniel Chalobah — were all selected to enter their field due to their ability to keep the ball effectively; possession is in itself a fitness-preserving strategy which Silva is fond of.
"The changes I made during the match were to control the ball better," Silva explained. "For all these games in a row, we have not enough time to rest in between matches. If you have better control of the ball during the game you can rest during some matches with these kinds of scores."
On shoring up the defence
A 6-2 victory isn't something Silva and his players will be turning their noses up at any time soon, however it wasn't all perfect as far as the head coach is concerned — he was especially disappointed to concede two to a Birmingham side which have struggled for goals this season.
Fulham are prone to these spectacular goalscoring flurries, but improving their fortunes at the other end of the pitch will strengthen their long-term prospects and stand them in good stead for when the goals aren't quite so free-flowing.
"We cannot concede the two goals in the way that we do," asserted the head coach. "In some moments we should play our way, but the other times, we have to play the other part of the game. We have to be a bit more ugly, a bit more aggressive. The way we concede the second goal, the first as well; we have to improve in these situations."