Monday 15 August 2016, 7:00pm at Craven Cottage, London
Fulham FC
Blackburn Rovers
Blackburn Rovers

60' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Stephen Humphrys
Off:Josh Walker

73' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Jon Dagur Thorsteinsson
Off:Elijah Adebayo

Fulham Under-23s kicked off their season with a 1-0 victory over Blackburn Rovers at Craven Cottage on a beautiful summer's evening.

Fulham Under-23s kicked off their season with a 1-0 victory over Blackburn Rovers at Craven Cottage on a beautiful summer's evening.

A Dennis Adeniran wonder goal with two minutes to go in regulation time was enough to see the Whites win their first match of the season.  

It was Fulham who were quickest out the traps and the first chance fell to Josh Walker after a neat lay-off by Elijah Adebayo. His shot was blocked by an onrushing Blackburn defender but the Whites continued to turn the screw; a high press stifling any forays out of their own half by Rovers.  

The next chance came about six minutes into the half when the lively Luca de la Torre found Tayo Edun in some space on the overlap. Edun unleashed a fizzing drive that went just past the right hand post.

Blackburn had no answer for a dominant Fulham outfit and in the eighth minute Sean Kavanagh went close with an audacious drive from outside the box.

The bombardment continued and Kavanagh was involved yet again, but this time from a set-piece. His curling effort was somehow clawed out of the net by Andrew Fisher in the Blackburn goal.

The only respite for a shell-shocked Rovers outfit was an injury to Fulham captain Josh Smile that delayed the game for two minutes before play resumed.  

Fulham went close again in the 24th minute when a mesmerising run from Adeniran opened up some space for Walker in the box. His low shot on target was again smothered by the impressive Fisher.

As the half progressed Blackburn grew into the game but the back four of Kavanagh, Ryheem Sheckleford, Aron Davies and Marlon Fossey stood firm, with the two full-backs willing options on the counter attack.

Possibly the best chance of the half came with two minutes remaining, with the tenacious Smile winning possession and picking out Adebayo with a superb pass. The striker took a touch and fired on target, only for his shot to take a slight deflection and go behind for a corner.

Blackburn started the second half with promise and came close to snatching a lead in the 51st minute when Willem Tomlinson thundered a vicious drive just wide of the right hand post. Rovers continued to press and without an exceptional sequence of defending from Fossey they may have taken the lead. The young defender standing up an attacker twice with two perfectly timed challenges.

Blackburn were almost made to pay for their inability to take their chances in the 61st minute when a cross was met by de la Torre in the centre of the penalty area. His shot had the beating of the keeper but grazed the bar and went behind.

Fulham began to grow into the game and substitute Stephen Humphrys went close after pouncing on an errant pass. He beat his defender on the outside and attempted a left-footed shot from outside the box that went marginally wide.

With the sun setting, legs tiring and neither side able to break down the opposition it was something special that broke the deadlock.

A cross from the right wing fell into the path of Adeniran who smashed a stunning volley into the top corner. A wonderful goal worthy of winning any match.  

Match Information

Competition: PL2, Division 2

Date: Monday 15 August 2016
Kick-off: 7:00pm

Venue: Craven Cottage, London
Attendance: 236


Line-up: Norman; Fossey, Davies, Sheckleford, Kavanagh; De La Torre, Smile, Adeniran, Edun; Walker (Humphrys 60'); Adebayo (Thorsteinsson 73')

Unused substitutes: Lukwata, Dolan, Kait

Manager: Peter Grant

Blackburn Rovers

Line-up: Fisher; Nyambe, Magloire, Platt, Travis; Thomson, Tomlinson, Rankin-Costello, Boyle; Grayson, Mansell

Unused substitutes: Askew, Ashcroft, Haworth, Rittenberg, Doyle

Fulham (4-4-1-1)
  • 1Magnus Norman
  • 3Marlon Fossey
  • 5Aron Davies
  • 2Ryheem Sheckleford
  • 6Sean Kavanagh
  • 7Luca De La Torre
  • 4Josh Smile
  • 8Dennis Adeniran
  • 11Tayo Edun
  • 9Josh Walker
  • 10Elijah Adebayo
  • 12Josh Lukwata
  • 14Anthony Dolan
  • 15Jon Dagur Thorsteinsson
  • 16Mattias Kait
  • 17Stephen Humphrys
  • Peter Grant
Blackburn Rovers (4-4-2)
  • 1Andrew Fisher
  • 2Ryan Nyambe
  • 5Tyler Magloire
  • 6Matthew Platt
  • 3Lewis Travis
  • 7Connor Thomson
  • 4Willem Tomlinson
  • 8Joe Rankin-Costello
  • 11Jack Boyle
  • 10Joe Grayson
  • 9Lewis Mansell
  • 12Josh Askew
  • 13Ben Ashcroft
  • 14Remi Haworth
  • 15Dean Rittenberg
  • 16Charlie Doyle