Crawley Town lose to Fulham 2-0 in friendly
Crawley Town lost to Championship side Fulham 2-0 following two first half goals.
In a game played out in hot and humid conditions, manager John Gregory fielded a first half line-up which featured nine new signings.
Fulham had a strong line-up in a squad which included ten internationals.
Feliz Malgath’s side took the lead after 31 minutes when Kostas Stafylidis shot powerfully from a tight angle from the left into the corner of the net.
The visitors made it 2-0 just four minutes later when Stafylidis supplied the unmarked Rodallega who beat keeper Brian Jensen from short-range.
Before the two opening goals Rodallega had two threatening attempts which were well off-target.
For Crawley, Dean Leacock headed a corner into the arms of keeper Jesse Joronen and Conor Henderson set up up Izale McLeod who headed well clear.
Just before the break McLeod went on a snaking run on the left of the penalty area but his shot was easily gathered by keeper Joronen.
At half-time Crawley made just one change with goalkeeper Raphael Spiegel who was signed on Friday on loan from West Ham, replacing Brian Jensen.
Fulham made four changes with Joronen, Scott Parker, Cauley Woodrow and Rodallega replaced by goalkeeper Marcus Bettinelli, Alex Kacaniklic, Moussa Dembele and Adam Taggart, who played for Australia in the 2014 World Cup finals.
In the second half McLeod went on a run and let loose a shot which was saved by Bettinelli, then Dembele headed a Chris David cross wide.
After 53 minutes Elsad Zverotic came on for Fulham’s Ryan Williams and on the hour Reds replaced Williams and McLeod with trialists Bobson Bawling and former Dutch international and ex-Cottagers player Collins John, who attracted warm applause from the Fulham fans.
Following good build-up play by Josh Simpson, Bawling went close almost immediately from six yards but his outstretched effort was deflected for a corner.
For Crawley a corner by Jimmy Smith was headed narrowly wide by Leacock.
Fulham’s Kacaniklic was impressively denied by substitute goalkeeper Spiegel.
Then for Fulham Dembele struck the crossbar with a shot which bounced clear.
The second half fizzled out with Crawley unable to created any clear cut chances during the last few minutes.
REDS: Brian Jensen (Raphael Speigel 46), Lanre Oyebanjo (Lewis Lindsay 79), Ryan Dickson (Danny Childs 87), Conor Henderson (Johnny Marsden 66), Dean Leacock (Sonny Bradley 74), Gwion Edwards (Bobson Bawling 60), Jimmy Smith, Izale McLeod (Collins John 60), Josh Simpson (capt) (Ryan Richeford 80), Joe Walsh (Connor Essam 74), Lewis Young (Emmett O’Connor 70)
Fulham: Jesse Joronen, Tim Hoogland, Kostas Stafylidis, Shaun Hutchinson, Scott Parker, Cauley Woodrow, Hugo Rodallega, Lass Vigen Christiansen, Chris David, Cameron Burgess, Ryan Williams
2nd half - Marcus Bettinelli, Alex Kacaniklic, Moussa Dembele, Adam Taggart, Patrick Roberts, Eslad Zverotic
ATTENDANCE: 3,390 (1,712):
REFEREE: Tim Robinson
MAN OF THE MATCH: Josh Simpson