Match ends, Barnsley 1, Fulham 0.
Fulham boss Scott Parker said he was "bitterly disappointed" as the promotion favourites fell to defeat at promoted Barnsley on the opening Saturday of the Championship season.
Debutant Luke Thomas scored the winner in the first half when he latched on to Mike Bahre's pass and showed good feet before scoring with a powerful shot.
Tykes defender Mads Andersen twice cleared off the line and sub Anthony Knockaert forced a good save from goalkeeper Samuel Radlinger as the visitors pushed for a leveller, but the hosts held out.
The Whites were relegated from the Premier League last season after a lacklustre campaign during which they sacked two managers and conceded 81 goals in the league.
"We knew it was going to be a tough battle in the first game of the season, which it proved to be," Parker, who was appointed on a permanent basis in the summer, said.
"We started ok in the first 10 minutes of the first half, but Barnsley got a grip of the game and caused us a few problems.
"In the second half we got into the game and we had chances which they defended heroically at times, but overall it's very disappointing."
Barnsley deserved win, says Stendel
Daniel Stendel gave debuts to six summer signings on Barnsley's return to the second tier after a season in League One.
Despite the high number of changes to last season's promotion-winning team, the hosts did not look disjointed and took a deserved lead through Thomas in the 13th minute.
Parker's side conceded 81 times in the league last season and were again poor defensively - with only wasteful finishing by Bahre preventing the Tykes adding to their lead before half-time.
Fulham improved after the break, with Tom Cairney and Floyd Ayite seeing Andersen clear efforts off the line, but struggled to get forwards Ivan Cavaleiro, Aleksandar Mitrovic and Aboubakar Kamara into the game.
German Stendel lead Barnsley to promotion from League One last season in his first campaign with the club and felt his side deserved victory.
"I'm very happy about the result but more about the performance today," he said. "We knew that Fulham have a good squad but if we played with more conviction we had a chance to win this game.
"Most of the time we played really well, Fulham had some chances in the second half, but we deserved to win."
The Tykes visit South Yorkshire rivals Sheffield Wednesday next Saturday, while Parker's side host Blackburn the same day.
- 5DiabyBooked at 54mins
- 27MowattBooked at 44mins
- 16ThomasSubstituted forChaplinat 86'minutes
- 36WilksBooked at 90minsSubstituted forThiamat 90+4'minutes
- 9WoodrowSubstituted forMillerat 90+1'minutes
- 20Le MarchandBooked at 32minsSubstituted forChristieat 33'minutes
- 8JohansenSubstituted forKnockaertat 65'minutes
- 19CavaleiroSubstituted forAyitéat 74'minutes
- 36De La Torre
- Andy Davies
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, Barnsley 1, Fulham 0.
Corner, Barnsley. Conceded by Aboubakar Kamara.
Substitution, Barnsley. Mamadou Thiam replaces Mallik Wilks.
Mallik Wilks (Barnsley) is shown the yellow card.
Joe Bryan (Fulham) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Mallik Wilks (Barnsley).
Substitution, Barnsley. George Miller replaces Cauley Woodrow.
Alfie Mawson (Fulham) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Cauley Woodrow (Barnsley).
Attempt saved. Kevin McDonald (Fulham) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Floyd Ayité.
Aboubakar Kamara (Fulham) wins a free kick on the left wing.
Foul by Toby Sibbick (Barnsley).
Corner, Barnsley. Conceded by Denis Odoi.
Attempt blocked. Mallik Wilks (Barnsley) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked.
Substitution, Barnsley. Conor Chaplin replaces Luke Thomas.
Attempt missed. Aboubakar Kamara (Fulham) right footed shot from outside the box is too high following a corner.
Attempt blocked. Denis Odoi (Fulham) header from the left side of the six yard box is blocked. Assisted by Anthony Knockaert with a cross.
Corner, Fulham. Conceded by Bambo Diaby.
Offside, Barnsley. Cauley Woodrow tries a through ball, but Mallik Wilks is caught offside.