Fulham manager Claudio Ranieri believes his side put in an improved display at Stamford Bridge, despite losing the match to Chelsea.

The Italian’s first game in charge yielded three points last week against Southampton, but he felt Fulham were better against our local rivals.

“I’m satisfied – not with result, of course – but with the way we reacted and played,” he said in his post-match press conference.

“It’s strange to say, but I think we played much better today than against Southampton, and we have to continue in this way.

“The players need to understand my philosophy better because I like to play very fast. Today, we made good decisions in a very short period of time.

“I think it was a good match. At the beginning we gave them a good present when we lost the ball and they scored on the counter attack, but we reacted well.

“I told our players before the match that we can win or lose, but I want us to play with our philosophy.

“We didn’t make enough chances in the first half, but it was much better in the second half.

With our two wingers [Floyd Ayité and Aboubakar Kamara], we created some problems for them and had chances to draw the match.

“In the end, they scored the second goal. I think it was a good match in the second-half, but when Maurizio [Sarri] made some changes and put on [Alvaro] Morata, [Ruben] Loftus-Cheek, it’s not easy.

They have quality players – [Eden] Hazard is amazing.”

Fulham were presented with an uphill battle after conceding inside four minutes, but a strong reaction was given in the pursuit of an equaliser.

“I was pleased because in the first half we conceded one goal after a mistake in midfield, but after I decided to change the system and put two wingers who were faster than their defensive line, and we created some chances,” Ranieri explained.

“I think we improved a lot from the last match against Southampton, but we lost the match.

That’s football – when you play against big teams you can lose, but it’s important to see what you did well and what you did wrong.

“We have to work in every direction; when we have the ball and we don’t have the ball.

Today, we closed the space very well against big champions.”

Another big fixture is on the horizon now as we take on another of Ranieri’s former sides when Leicester City visit the Cottage on Wednesday.

“Now, we think about the next match,” he said.

“It’s a congested period but it’s important to improve our fitness, everything, because we’re pressing a lot and playing faster than before.

It’s important for us to make a right decision in a very short time.

“It will be difficult in every game this season, but I am very confident in my players.”