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Sacha Riether has urged Fulham to build on the solid foundations of their opening-day win at Sunderland.

The German defender, who last week signed a new contract with the club, was delighted with Fulham’s resolute defensive effort that secured all three points at the Stadium of Light on Saturday. Riether acknowledged that this wasn’t a flawless Fulham performance, but was pleased with the application of his team-mates as they withstood a strong Sunderland bombardment:

It was an away game so the first thing we have to do is try not to concede a goal and we defended very well. We know we have to play better in the future, but in the end if you win and do everything okay then we can be happy.

It was a good start to the season for us. You never really know after pre-season how we will be in the Barclays Premier League, how the team will perform and how fit everyone will be. It was a long pre-season, everyone has been waiting for months for it to start but now that we have a win under our belts the confidence is good.

We know Sunderland has a good team, it has many new players and it had home advantage with the fans behind them so you know you have to defend well. We did that as we attacked every ball and if we continue like that then it will be great season for us.

Riether was full of praise for match-winner Pajtim Kasami, whose second-half header sealed the winner. The Swiss midfielder seized his opportunity after being preferred to Bryan Ruiz in midfield following the Costa Rican playmaker’s international exertions.

I said to him before the game that he deserved to play. In pre-season he ran his socks off in every game and every training session and he deserved his goal. For him to get his first goal in the first game of the new season means it was a perfect day for him and we were all delighted for him.