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Fulham's Under-19s to face Fluminense in semi-final of Dallas Cup

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Steve Wigley's Under-19s must see off tough opposition in the form of Brazilian outfit Fluminense if they are to progress to the final of the Dr. Pepper Dallas Cup

Michael Steele

The recent progression of our academy is one of the few tangible positives to have come from the club over the past few years.

Although perhaps still considered by some to be a feeder club for the likes of the top four, or just Tottenham, Fulham’s recent overspill of young quality has seen the likes of Matthew Briggs, Kerim Frei and Alex Kacaniklic test the water of the Premier League.

Domestically our under-21s and under-18s have exceeded expectations, with the latter being crowned Academy League Champions under the guidance of Kit Symons.

And with the appointments of Malcolm Elias, Steve Wigley, Huw Jennings and Stewart ­Henderson, Southampton’s former quartet who were behind the likes of Gareth Bale, Theo Walcott and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, there is the potential for us to harness and produce further quality.

So far Fulham’s electric form has carried over State side with the boys defeating last year’s champions Coritiba (3-1), L.A. Galaxy (2-1) and Eintracht Frankfurt (5-0) in the coveted Dallas Cup.

Competing for the first time, Fluminense, whose youth system has nurtured the likes of Real Madrid left back Marcelo, topped their group with some impressive displays of typical Brazilian football.

Tomorrow’s match will be no easy task for the boys in white, but given the confidence that comes with an unbeaten run of form, we’ll certainly be up for it.

Kick off: Friday 29th March - 7:30pm (local time)