Villa U21 3-5 Fulham U21: Youngsters lose eight-goal thriller
Villa finished up empty handed after table-topping Fulham scored three late goals in a ding-dong encounter at Bodymoor Heath.
The two sides somehow coped with the horrendous conditions to produce an eight-goal thriller at Villa's training headquarters.
Fulham's big-money deadline day signing Konstantinos Mitroglou conjured up two superb finishes to give the visitors an early lead.
But Gordon Cowans' team overturned the two-goal deficit thanks to a Liam Donnelly own goal, Callum Robinson's strike and a penalty from Daniel Johnson.
There was still plenty of time for more twists, though, and after getting back on level terms, Fulham added to further strikes including a freak goal from keeper Marek Rodak.
It took just 19 minutes for Greek forward Mitroglou to show his class when he fired past Benjamin Siegrist from the edge of the box.
Then six minutes later he added a second - a wonderful dipping 25-yard strike.
The hosts were handed a lifeline just before the half-hour mark when Donnelly's header from a Jordan Graham corner ended up in his own net.
Four minutes into the second half, Robinson was well placed at the near post to convert Jordan Bowery's cross from the right.
Bowery was instrumental in Villa's third goal too, winning a penalty after being fouled by Mananga Jonathan Buatu.
Skipper Johnson stepped up to score from the spot and give his side the lead.
Then came the late Fulham onslaught. Cauley Woodrow scored twice in the space of four minutes.
Firstly, he met Lyle Della Verde's corner on the volley to beat Siegrist 12 minutes from time.
Then Woodrow converted from close range after a good run and cross by Donnelly.
The final goal of the game arrived in bizarre circumstances.
Rodak's long clearance bounced once before catching the strong wind and carrying all the way into the Villa net.
VILLA: Siegrist, Webb, Kinsella, Stieber, Lewis, Toner, Graham, Robinson, Bowery, Johnson, Burke. Subs: Lyden, Watkins, Calder, Sellars, McKirdy.
FULHAM: Rodak, Donnelly, Richards, Della Verde, Buatu, Burgess, Roberts, Christensen, Mitroglou, Woodrow, Plumain. Subs: Oberschmidt, Brister, Evans, Sambou, Hyndman.
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