Hugo Rodallega's brace and Marcello Trotta's neat header secured a Fulham XI a comfortable 3-1 friendly win over Oman 'A' at Motspur Park on Friday afternoon.
Fulham put out a strong side to face the Omanis in the glorious sunshine at our Training Ground, in front of the watching Martin Jol.
The Whites got off to a fantastic start and took the lead with their first foray forward on two minutes when Rodallega tapped in from close range after a fine cross by Matthew Briggs from the left flank.
The young full-back was enjoying regularly marauding forward and only a last-ditch tackle denied him after he’d embarked on a mazy run towards goal after robbing the Omani right-winger 40 yards from goal.
We doubled the lead on eight minutes and the goal again came following good play down the left wing. This time Kieran Richardson found space and picked Trotta out in the area for the Italian to expertly plant his header back across goal and inside the far post.
Oman pegged us back instantly, though, as a smart throughpass straight from kick-off caught the Fulham defence unawares and Ahmed Hadid poked past David Stockdale to make it 2-1.
The tempo of the game slowed after Oman scored and it wasn’t until the 25th minute that either goal was threatened when Zdenek Grygera’s well-timed challenge in the box denied Oman a shooting opportunity.
The away side were enjoying a rare spell of possession and Hussain Aloi called Stockdale into action moments later with a well-struck drive from range. Fulham’s number 13 comfortably held the effort, though, with minimal fuss.
The Whites almost punished Oman for giving away a sloppy corner on 36 minutes when Grygera flicked on Simon Davies’ set piece, only for Steve Sidwell to volley narrowly over from 18 yards.
Trotta had a golden chance to extend our lead 10 minutes into the second period after being put in by a ball over the top from Dan Burn. The Italian had Rodallega in support but his predatory instincts took over and he went for goal himself, but his shot was straight at the Oman keeper.
A great effort from the left foot of Aloi from 25-yards out minutes later drew a fingertip save from Stockdale as Oman searched for a way back into the match. Stockdale then claimed the resulting corner kick with ease.
The game was flowing from end-to-end and Rodallega should have perhaps done better on the hour mark when Sean Kavanagh – a half-time replacement for Briggs – floated an exquisite cross into the area, only for the Colombian to head over.
Oman should have drawn level two minutes later when Al Rujaibi found himself in space in the box but the striker appeared to be surprised at the amount of time he had and fired well over when he should have tested Stockdale at the very least.
The Whites took full advantage of the visitors’ profligacy in front of goal as we went up the other end and Rodallega clinically thumped home into the top corner from 20 yards out.
Richardson almost extended the lead even further on 74 minutes but the Oman stopper tipped his free-kick just over the bar after his side were penalised for handball 25 yards from goal.
That effort proved to be the final meaningful opportunity of the game as Fulham claimed a deserved victory against an enthusiastic Oman outfit.
Fulham: 13. Stockdale, 2. Brister, 5. Burn, 26. Grygera, 17. Briggs (3. Kavanagh, 46), 29. Davies (9. Altman, 73), 16. Smith (4. Pritchard, 69 mins), 7. Sidwell (C), 15. Richardson (10. Dalla Valle, 77), 39. Trotta (12. Banya, 65), 20. Rodallega
Oman: 3. Alowaisi, 4. Aljabri, 7. Aloi, 10. Basheer (C), 11. Suhail, 13. Almukhaini, 14. Al Rujaibi, 15. Alajimi, 18. Al Rushidi, 19. Alsadi, 21. Hadid