Fulham came from behind to take a slender lead to Stamford Bridge for the second leg of the FA Youth Cup final, scoring three goals in nine second half minutes to beat Chelsea 3-2.
Moussa Dembele shrugged the disappointment of missing a first half penalty to inspire Fulham’s belligerent fightback. He breezed past Andreas Christensen at a corner to level matters with twenty minutes to play. The young Whites were in front within three minutes when American midfielder Emerson Hyndman burst through three challenges before firing a shot goalwards from just outside the box. It took a cruel deflection off Christensen as he made the fatal error of turning his back and nestled in the far corner.
Fulham grabbed a third from another corner after Liam Donnelly capitalised on confusion in the Chelsea defence to flick on for Cameron Burgess to power home a header at the back post. The visitors did get a goal back when Charly Musonda crashed a shot beyond Marek Rodak with four minutes to play, but they will rue a second half where they came off the pace and lost control of the contest. They had dominated the first period but had to wait until four minutes before the break for their reward, when Jay Dasilva thumped home from the left flank after good play from Izzy Brown.
Dembele, who has featured for Felix Magath’s first team already this season, commendably shrugged off the disappointment of seeing his Panenka penalty clip the top of the crossbar after Patrick Roberts – another member of this impressive side who has been promoted to the senior squad – had been felled by Ola Aina. Lesser sides would have wilted, but Fulham only grew in the face of adversity.
FULHAM (4-4-1-1): Rodak; Sheckleford, Donnelly, Burgess, Evans (Baba, 87); Smile (O’Hallaron, 63), Sambou, Hyndman, Williams; Roberts (Walker, 90); Dembélé.
CHELSEA (4-2-3-1) Collins; Ssewankambo, Chistensen, Clarke-Salter (Dabo, 78), Aina; Houghton (Palmer, 59), Loftus-Cheek; Brown, Colkett, Dasilva; Solanke (Musonda 73).