FFC U18s 3-1 West Brom

Saturday 16 November 2013 14:32

Fulham Under-18s rallied either side of half-time to see off the challenge of West Bromwich Albion and go clear at the top of the Barclays U18 Premier League.

Patrick Roberts fired in the equaliser after the Whites had fallen behind early on, then Roberts doubled his tally before half-time and Mehki Leacock-McLeod struck just after the restart. 

Despite controlling a larger share of possession, the Whites were chasing the game when the Baggies midfield seized control of a loose pass and the visitors took advantage on the counter attack to score.

Steve Wigley's boys responded well to the set-back and Leacock-McLeod's quick footwork created space find Roberts with a precise pass, which the England Under-17 International made no mistake with, slamming his shot in off the post midway through the first half.

West Brom continued to sit deep and frustrate Fulham, with Leacock-McLeod and Roberts threatening to find a way through but the match seemed set to go into half-time level.

That was until Roberts' excellent burst of pace drew a foul on the edge of the box. The winger dusted himself down and stepped up to take the free-kick, bending the ball around the wall and into the top corner to put the Whites in front.

And Fulham caught West Bromwich cold after the re-start when Dean O'Halloran's deep cross was met sweetly on the volley by Leacock-McLeod to extend the lead.

The Whites continued in search of a fourth, and Moussa Dembele's drive after a neat turn whistled just wide of the West Bromwich goal. 

Aaron Redford made his return from a long injury lay-off, replacing Dembele, and almost made an immediate impact but his firm strike was blocked by the legs of the goalkeeper.

The Baggies pushed for a consolation in the last half hour after Leacock-McLeod was sent off for retaliation, but Whites goalkeeper Marek Rodak kept the visitors' attack at bay.

Fulham: Rodak, Baba (Sheckleford 87), Edun, Burgess, Adebayo, Smile, Sambou, Roberts (Elworthy 89), Leacock McLeod, O'Halloran, Dembele (Redford 62). Subs not used: Norman, Nobay.