Fulham U21s 2-1 Everton U21s
Everton-U21s fell to a 2-1 away defeat to Fulham on Monday evening, despite a spirited performance at Motspur Park.
The young Blues trailed 2-0 when summer signing Brendan Galloway netted his first goal in an Everton shirt, but his headed effort was not enough to salvage a share of the spoils for David Unsworth’s side.
Dismal conditions hindered the attacking displays of both sides, but two solo efforts proved to be enough to secure all three points for the hosts.
Full of confidence from their opening day win over Leicester City last week, the young Toffees started brightly and were unfortunate not to open the scoring in the opening exchanges.
Chris Long, who opened his account for the season last week, was proving to be a handful for Fulham’s backline and could only be denied by smart work from goalkeeper Marek Rodak on two occasions.
The Liverpool-born forward thought he had broken the deadlock just after the half hour mark when Kieran Dowell’s shot was parried by Rodak into the path of the striker. He duly converted, only to be denied by an offside flag.
After dominating the game in the first period, the home side came flying out of the blocks in the second half and were rewarded with a goal for their efforts on 47 minutes.
Defender Ryan Tunnicliffe found his teammate Marcello Trotta and the striker made no mistake in beating his marker and firing past Russell Griffiths to put the home side ahead.
After a cagey ten minutes, Fulham doubled their lead on the hour with a sensational 30-yard strike from midfielder Buomesca Tu Na Bangna.
The tricky winger received the ball on the left flank with seemingly not much in front of him, but after cutting inside, went on to unleash a thunderbolt into the top corner past a helpless Griffiths.
Undeterred by the setback, Unsworth’s began to regain the upper hand and their dominance was rewarded with a goal with 11 minutes remaining.
An in-swinging corner was powerfully met by new defender Galloway and the ball crossed the line despite the desperate efforts of the Fulham defenders to scramble the ball away.
The young Toffees continued to press as they searched for an equaliser and came close when Hallam Hope’s centre evaded substitute Courtney Duffus by a matter of inches with the goal gaping.
Another substitute, George Green, came even closer when his 25-yard left-footed drive crashed off the post in added time, but the ball flew away from danger and the Blues would leave the capital empty handed.