Four days after kicking off the new Division Three (now League Two) season with a 1-0 win at Barnsley, Fulham hosted Swansea City at the Cottage in the Whites’ first home league game of the campaign.
Fulham, who had seen Johnny Haynes depart SW6 earlier in the year, romped to a 4-1 win over the newly-promoted Swans, who were managed by former Whites star Roy Bentley.
The hosts came racing out of the traps and took the lead as early as the fourth minute. Swansea keeper Tony Millington could only parry a Fred Callaghan free-kick into the path of Steve Earle who made no mistake from close range.
Earle then added his second on 34 minutes, collecting Jimmy Conway’s cross from the right and chipping the prostrate Millington.
Swansea, though, got themselves back in the game just two minutes later when beanpole teenager Terry Cotton slotted home Barry Evans’ low delivery.
Any hopes of a Swansea comeback were ended soon after the restart, however, when Vic Gomersall could only clear a Conway free-kick as far as Jimmy Dunne who fired in to score on his home league debut.
In the 52nd minute, it was game over as Fulham added a fourth when Vic Halom bravely dived in to connect with Les Barrett’s cross and head past Millington.
Halom later saw a header cleared off the line by David Lawrence, while Dunne went close with a lob that was scrambled over the bar by Millington as the Whites secured a comprehensive win against a poor Swansea side.
It would prove a season to remember for Fulham, of course, as the Whites finished second to win promotion to Division Two.
Whites Manager Bill Dodgin said after the win over Swansea: “I was quite happy with the final scoreline. If we score four goals every week, we can’t go far wrong. Steve Earle ran hard and worked hard and deserved his two goals.”
From the archives
Fulham FC matchday programme (v. Bradford City) – Wednesday 2nd September 1970
‘On the Field – Reports’
“Once we scored our early goal, it was really a question not of who but how many. Instead of stone-walling, waiting for us to make a mistake, Swansea had to attack – and the team they brought was over-weighted with defenders.”