Reserves Draw

Wednesday 10 November 2004

Portsmouth Res. 2-2 Fulham Res.

Fulham's Reserve Team came back from a two-goal deficit to draw 2-2 with Portsmouth on Tuesday evening. Goals from Billy McKinlay and Michael Timlin secured the point.

The Whites got off to a bad start when, after only four minutes, a severe lack of communication between the back line and goalkeeper allowed a lone Portsmouth striker to latch on to a long ball and apply a simple finish.

Despite conceding early, Fulham continued to play an expansive game and came close to scoring on two occasions. Much of Portsmouth's success came from playing a high pressure, direct style which caused Fulham's defence some early problems.

The home side scored their second of the evening on 44 minutes after another lapse in defence.

"We went in at half time two goals down having dominated possession and possibly chances too," said Reserve Team Manager Paul Nevin. "At half time it was a case of asking, do we feel sorry for ourselves or do we have enough self belief to get back in the game? We came out and absolutely dominated the play. We were patient, we weren't cavalier because we knew that if we kept our discipline we would score."

Following a spell of high pressure, Fulham opened their account in the 77th minute when Billy McKinlay worked himself into space on the edge of the box and smashed a shot into the top corner.

The second goal game shortly after when a McKinlay corner was nodded into Michael Timlin's path by Robert Watkins. The Republic of Ireland youth international made no mistake from close range.

The Whites successfully rode out a brief Portsmouth resurgence before crafting two excellent late chances for Stuart Noble, unfortunately the striker failed to hit the target on both occasions.

Despite the comeback, Paul Nevin was disappointed with the overall display. "I'm very unhappy that we didn't win the game clearly," he said after the match. "It's alright commending the players on coming back from two goals down but we should never have been two down in the first place. It's a point away from home but the bottom line is we should have done better."

Fulham: Flitney; Omozusi, Milsom, Watkins, Green; McKinlay, Buari, McDermott (Collins 70), Timlin, Lawless (Doherty H/T); Noble