Fulham Under-23s were thrown straight in to their pre-season preparations as Braga ‘B’ posed a stern test on the Northern coast of Portugal.
The Under-23s are also joined by the Under-18s who face a different set of tests in the coming five days, including Famalicao Under-19s later in the day.
The teams played out a 1-1 draw as Martell Taylor-Crossdale opened his scoring account in a Fulham shirt.
Braga came at the Young Fulham side with aggression and pace on the counter attack, which took some time for adjustment. The trialist in the Fulham goal making a few strong saves.
Sonny Hilton almost gave his side the lead as he cut back inside and forced a low save as Fulham dominated the shot count for large parts of the first half. Soon after the restart Braga did find the breakthrough after a knock down at the far post was diverted into the roof of the net.
A host of changes saw the tide turn in Fulham’s favour with the new combination of Cameron Thompson and Taylor-Crossdale providing a new edge. Jonathon Page snuck around the back only for his header to be cleared off the line in the best chance of the second half.
The new frontman showed his instinctive edge levelling the scores late on. Hilton poked a ball into the channel for Taylor-Crossdale to fire home a first-time finish ten minutes from time. Carvalho rattled the crossbar in the dying embers in what was an impressive opening performance.
A good opening test as Fulham now face the formidable challenge of Porto Under-19s on Saturday.
Fulham: Trialist, McAvoy (Page 62’), Tricker, Murphy, Reynolds (Drameh 45’), Davis (Thompson 70’), De Havilland, Hilton, Carvalho, Santos-Clase, Abraham (Taylor-Crossdale 45’).
Subs: Taylor-Crossdale, Drameh, Page, Thompson, Stahl