This game might have finished goalless, but it was a lot more exciting than the stalemate suggests. Peter Taylor might have more readily accepted a boring home victory, given his struggles as Leicester City manager, and Jean Tigana would have preferred to end Fulham’s run of five league fixtures without a win, but this was enthralling advert for the Premiership and both teams were certainly trying to score goals.

Leicester put the top flight new boys under a serious second half onslaught but couldn’t find the winner they craved. Taylor’s side have mustered just two points from their four home games and the signs were that the Filbert Street faithful wouldn’t take too much solace from how their defence managed to nullify the threat of Fulham’s new £11.5m forward Steve Marlet. Perhaps the visitors most assured performer was beanpole centre back Zat Knight, who enjoyed an accomplished league debut at the heart of a successful rearguard action.

Fulham began the brighter of the two sides and Marlet perhaps should have opened his account in the very first minute but the former Lyon striker scuffed his shot from a Louis Saha cut-back. Leicester sat deep in defence to lessen the chances of being blown away by the pace of Saha, Marlet and Boa Morte and took a while to work their way into the contest. Their best opening came when Dean Sturridge slammed a cross from Jordan Stewart over the top from six yards.

The second half saw Taylor’s side go on the offensive. They tested Edwin van der Sar’s agility with a succession of high crosses, but the Dutchman banished any suggestion of frailty as he come off his line regularly to give Fulham’s back four some respite. Sturridge spurned another good chance – heading wide from a searching Lee Marshall cross – but the combination of Andy Melville’s experience and the physicality of young Knight, who was replaced eventually by Kit Symons, helped the Whites record an impressive clean sheet.

Taylor sent on attacking substitutes in a bid to force the issue but Fulham didn’t wilt in the face of a searching examination of their defensive discipline. Stewart continued to advance at will from left back and produced another precise cross that Jamie Scrowcroft headed over the bar and when the full back succumbed to an arm injury with ten minutes to play, some of the impetus went out of Leicester’s assault. Fulham have won plenty of points for style on their return to the top flight after more than three decades away, but this was a precious away draw forged on old fashioned fortitude.

LEICESTER CITY (4-4-2): Walker, Davidson, Stewart (Impey 80), Marshall, Elliott; Sinclair (Rowett 34), Savage, Wise, Izzet; Scowcroft, Sturridge. Subs (not used): Royce, Jones, Benjamin.

BOOKED: Sinclair, Stewart.

FULHAM (4-4-2): van der Sar; Finnan, Brevett, Knight (Symons 64), Melville; Davis, Collins, Clark, Boa Morte (Legwinski 45; Malbranque 69); Saha, Marlet. Subs (not used): Taylor, Hayles.

BOOKED: Boa Morte, Davis.

REFEREE: Eddie Wolstenholme (Lancashire)