U18s Defeat Fulham
Saturday, 29th Jan 2011 17:04
Town's U18s got back to winning ways with a fine 3-2 victory over Fulham at Playford Road on Saturday morning. Josh Meekings (pictured), Cormac Burke and Jack Simmons were on target for the young Blues.
Town started well and Welsh U17 international striker Jack Simmons blazed over early on. The first half was a fairly even affair but it ended on a sour note when Fulham skipper Josh Pritchard had to be stretchered off after he had fouled Byron Lawrence.
The Cottagers came out strongly for the second half and took the lead within two minutes of the restart. Alex Brister curled in a freekick to the back post where centre-half Robert Maloney beat keeper Cody Cropper with a powerful header.
The dangerous Brister came close to doubling Fulham's advantage soon after when his looping header rebounded off the crossbar.
Town started to come back into the match with Northern Ireland U21 international midfielder Josh Carson and Simmons both having powerful efforts which were well saved by Grant Smith in the Fulham goal.
With 20 minutes remaining, Town did score a deserved equaliser when central defender Josh Meekings headed home after being left unmarked from a corner.
Substitute Tommy Winter and right-back Callum Bennett both came close to giving Town the lead from a Joe Whight cross before the Cottagers somewhat fortunately went ahead again on 77.
Youngster Lawrence conceded possession just outside the Town area and Fulham took full advantage with Brister slotting home.
However, the young Blues’ determination paid off with 10 minutes remaining when Winter laid the ball off to midfielder Cormac Burke on the right and the Northern Ireland U19 international hit a sweet low drive into the far corner of the net.
And Town grabbed all three points five minutes later when Simmons scored a poacher’s goal from inside the six-yard box following a corner which wasn't dealt with by the visitors.
Skipper Meekings survived a penalty appeal against him for handball in the dying seconds and Town held on for a well-deserved and hard-fought three points. Meekings, who produced resolute defending throughout, and Simmons, who never stopped causing the Fulham defence problems, were probably the standout performers on a bitterly cold morning.
Town: Cropper, Bennett, Whight, Carson, Meekings, McKeown, Burke, Scotcher (October 67), Simmons, Lawrence and Tiofack (Winter 67). Unused: Maduako, O'Donnell and Acott.
Report and photo: James Ager
Photo: Action Images
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