Our under-21s suffered a narrow 2-1 away defeat to Fulham on Friday night.
On the road for the third straight league game, Ali’s side started positively with Catalin Cirjan firing an early effort just over the bar.
Our next opportunity came with Mauro Bandeira driving up the pitch to play in Charles Sagoe Jr, but the latter's strike just missed the target.
Soon after, Matt Smith’s delightful defence-splitting pass found Khayon Edwards but the striker was unable to bring the ball down with the goal at his mercy.
However, it would be the hosts to break the deadlock five minutes before half time when Oliver Sanderson headed home the rebound after Hubert Graczyk brilliantly denied the preceding effort.
Mehmet Ali brought on Amario Cozier-Duberry at the break and the winger made an immediate impact from the bench - firing home an equaliser from Sagoe Jr’s cutback just 40 seconds after the restart.
We would only remain level for a short time before Luke Harris’ effort snuck past Graczyk to restore the Whites’ lead.
Despite the setback, we never let our heads drop and Cozier-Duberry was causing problems for Fulham down the right hand side. On one occasion he easily beat his marker but Sagoe Jr failed to connect with his cutback.
Edwards almost rescued a point late on when he made a darting near post run but he diverted his effort agonisingly wide from Sagoe Jr’s cross.
WHAT IT MEANS
The result sees us remain in seventh place with 29 points after 22 games.
We return home for an important fixture against Brighton & Hove Albion on Friday, April 14.
Kick-off at Meadow Park is at 7pm (UK).
Arsenal: Graczyk, Sweet, Monlouis, Awe (Lewis-Skelly, 63), Jeffcott, Smith, Bandeira, Cottrell, Sagoe Jr, Cirjan (Cozier-Duberry, 46), Edwards
Subs not used: Cooper, Nichols, Gower
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