Friday 15 February 2019, 7:00pm at Staplewood Training Ground, Southampton
Smallbone 38'; Afolabi 50'
Fulham FC
Harris 78'

38' Goal

Will Smallbone
Assist by Nathan Tella

50' Goal

Jonathan Afolabi
Assist by Will Ferry

63' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Dan N'Lundulu
Off:Jonathan Afolabi

86' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Kameron Ledwidge
Off:Will Ferry

90'+2 Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Allan Tchaptchet
Off:Nathan Tella

78' Goal

Jayden Harris
Assist by Cody Drameh

75' Substitution

Player was substituted for tactical reasons
On:Chris Kelly
Off:Fabio Carvalho

The Under-23s couldn’t build on their PL Cup landslide win as they fell to a disappointing 2-1 defeat at league leaders Southampton Under-23s.

League Leaders Grind Out Win

Friday 15 February 2019 20:57

The Under-23s couldn’t build on their PL Cup landslide win as they fell to a disappointing 2-1 defeat at league leaders Southampton Under-23s.

Will Smallbone’s unstoppable drive and Jonathan Afolabi’s fortunate looping finish handed the hosts a fifth straight league win - despite Jayden Harris’ header jangling the nerves.

Fulham went into the game seemingly bold, despite the host’s impressive form. The lads exchanging dominant possession.

However, it was the hosts who had the first big chance. A diagonal ball over the top was brought down expertly by Afolabi. Luca Ashby-Hammond stood tall to beat the ball clear.

Instantly at the other end, Moritz Jenz’s glancing header was somehow cleared off the line and behind for a corner. The Saints had a chance from a corner of their own as Tom O’Connor lashed over from a knock-down.

As the half wore on, the game began to get frantic. Both sides were surrendering possession cheaply as chances were hard to come by. Jenz was doing his duties at both ends of the pitch as he did superbly to pick himself up off the floor to get in the way of Afolabi’s strike.

The Saints created the best move of the game, and the best chance too. Some intricate football from Smallbone, Nathan Tella and Afolabi ended with the latter cannoning off the post.

The finishing instinct that had prevented Southampton from leading kicked into action. Smallbone rattled a precise first-time strike into the top corner from 25-yards.

The hosts had a swagger about them and more fluid football almost resulted in Jenz poking into his own net from a teasing Tyreke Johnson cross. Southampton went in at the break deservedly ahead.

The hosts flew out of the traps again and doubled their lead in fortunate style. Ferry’s cross was mistimed by Obafemi, but the looping effort off his shin found the far corner.

The Young Whites remained a threat from set-plays as Jerome Opoku glanced a header which was diverted over unknowingly by Aaron O’Driscoll.

Southampton’s youngsters were dominating the play, but Harris was presented with a good opportunity from a loose ball – he skewed into the side netting.

Smallbone was presented with another chance from range, this time the midfielder opted for precision. Ashby-Hammond despairingly watched the ball wide.

The Young Whites hit back as Harris flicked a header into the far corner to give a glimmer of hope. This gave the lads a new lease of life as Southampton looked rattled. Tyrese Francois looked to whip one into the far corner, if it weren’t for Christoph Klarer’s head.

However, we couldn’t find the goal we desired as Southampton held on for a 2-1 win.

Match Information

Competition: PL2, Division 2

Date: Friday 15 February 2019
Kick-off: 7:00pm

Venue: Staplewood Training Ground, Southampton


Line-up: Forster; Olufunwa, Klarer, O'Driscoll, O'Connor, Johnson; Tella (Tchaptchet 90'), Hamblin, Smallbone, Ferry (Ledwidge 86'); Afolabi (N'Lundulu 63')

Unused substitutes: Cull, Watts


Line-up: Ashby-Hammond; Sessegnon, Jenz, Opoku, Drameh; Francois, O'Riley; Elliott, Carvalho (Kelly 75'), Harris; Santos-Clase

Unused substitutes: Wickens, Jasper, Asare

Southampton (5-4-1)
  • 1Fraser Forster
  • 2Dare Olufunwa
  • 6Christoph Klarer
  • 5Aaron O'Driscoll
  • 4Tom O'Connor
  • 3Tyreke Johnson
  • 7Nathan Tella
  • 8Harry Hamblin
  • 10Will Smallbone
  • 11Will Ferry
  • 9Jonathan Afolabi
  • 12Allan Tchaptchet
  • 13Alex Cull
  • 14Kameron Ledwidge
  • 15Caleb Watts
  • 16Dan N'Lundulu
Fulham (4-2-3-1)
  • 1Luca Ashby-Hammond
  • 2Steven Sessegnon
  • 5Moritz Jenz
  • 6Jerome Opoku
  • 3Cody Drameh
  • 8Tyrese Francois
  • 10Matt O'Riley
  • 7Harvey Elliott
  • 4Fabio Carvalho
  • 11Jayden Harris
  • 9Nicolas Santos-Clase
  • 12George Wickens
  • 14Chris Kelly
  • 15Sylvester Jasper
  • 16Zico Asare