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Young Dons impress with victory at Fulham

Second-half goals seal win for development side in friendly

7 November 2017

By Rob Cornell

Second-half goals from Paul Kalambayi and Great Nii-Okai Evans wrapped up an impressive win for the development side in a friendly at Fulham.

Egli Kaja kept up his match sharpness in the 2-0 victory, played behind closed doors at Motspur Park, with manager Neal Ardley and coach Simon Bassey watching on.

There was also 90 minutes for Joe McDonnell in goal, plus Toby Sibbick and Anthony Hartigan, and Alfie Egan gave a lively cameo performance in an attacking midfield role for just over an hour.

Coach Alan Reeves was left very pleased in his post-match verdict afterwards and this can be seen below, via a link to our official club YouTube channel.

The young Dons edged the opening quarter on the game. McDonnell was required to get down to make a couple of saves, but midfielders Hartigan and Egan looked to thread the ball through to the forwards whenever possible.

Egan headed down into the path of a surging run by Kaja, who fired low into the keeper's hands in the 33rd minute. Six minutes before the break, Kaja whipped in a corner, with plenty of height, which curled over the goal.

The Dons took the lead four minutes after the break when another corner from Kaja was met powerfully by the head of skipper Kalambayi (pictured). Kaja fired over the top corner from distance in the 55th minute.

On the hour, Egan intercepted the ball in midfield and forced another low save out of the Fulham keeper. Straight down the other end, McDonnell had to get down well to thwart an attack and he conceded a corner when he pushed the ball round at close range.

Evans replaced Osaze Urhoghide with just under half an hour to go. Shortly after, Ossama Ashley, who has been in good goal scoring form for the under-18s, came on against his former club when he replaced Egan.

The young Dons defence of Sibbick, Dean Perana, Kalambayi and Ethan Nelson-Roberts formed a solid backline to keep the hosts at bay. Wimbledon pushed for a second goal with 10 minutes to go when Evans' shot on goal took a deflection and from the resulting corner Kaja flashed a shot wide. 

Shortly after, with eight minutes remaining, Evans sealed a deserved win for Alan Reeves' side with a confident finish past the keeper after a good ball from trialist Kane Crichlow.

AFC Wimbledon: McDonnell, Sibbick, Perana, Kalambayi, Urhoghide (Evans), Nelson-Roberts, Hartigan, Egan (Ashley), Kaja. Crichlow, Pingling.

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