Hyundai A-League - 2011/2012 - Season 7

Reds' ship steadied in the Harbour city
By Stephen Webb

2011/2012 Hyundai A-League - Round 12
7:30pm, Thursday 22 December, 2011
at Sydney Football Stadium

Sydney FC 2
(Karol Kisel 19' pen, Dimitri Petratos 66')
drew with
Adelaide United FC 2
(Daniel Mullen 7', Dario Vidosic 56')


This is the game where John Kosmina would come to the rescue of one of his former teams and prove his worth against another of his former teams.

Notwithstanding some half-hearted jeering from Sydney fans whenever the famous visage appeared on the big screens at each of the stadium, Kossie was successful.

Adelaide didn’t have much to offer in attack — most serious threats coming from the dead ball — but had an answer for every simple question posed by Sydney (too often involving a long ball).

Sydney had lost something: Nicky Carle. Adelaide had gained something: self-belief. Adelaide got into Sydney’s faces, backs and ankles. And at the end of the game all of Sydney’s hard running come to nothing for another significant lack: ideas.

Rain earlier in the day had cleared and the evening was fine. The ground looked chopped up, the Cove had turned up to do battle with several red Santas at the other end, but the 10,000 must have been a disappointment.

Sydney had the better of the opening minutes (Shannon Cole again looked sharp) but conceded early. Terry McFlynn rushed his mopping up of a Sydney tackle and gave away a corner from 25 metres up the park. Daniel Mullen challenged strongly for the ball close to the goal line and was rewarded for his efforts.

Fans behind me grumbled about Liam Reddy’s reaction to the threat but the general response was ... as if nothing had happened. Disbelief that Sydney was behind so early? Or a common malaise: this was just what they had come to expect?

Zenon Caravella was allowed a shot. Blocked. But Adelaide got another corner and nearly a second goal.

Sydney returned to pushing the ball around but Adelaide kept the pressure on. Mullen earned his yellow for banging into Bruno Cazarine (who surely must have been missing Carle’s provision of short balls to feet).

Brett Emerton played a one-two with Karol Kisel and with the return got a soft shot in to Eugene Galekovic.

Iain Ramsay down the left got a decent ball across Sydney’s penalty area and at the other end Cole got a ball in to Cazarine, who turned Nigel Boogaard and won a penalty. Kisel sent Galekovic the wrong way and scores were level.

Halfway through the first half and it was apparent to everyone but Sydney players that Adelaide’s fullbacks had a significant height advantage over most players at the end of Sydney’s long balls. Cazarine perhaps. But Dimitri Petratos? But Adelaide were giving as good as they were getting. So much so that someone behind me said, “It’s like watching tennis.”

Adelaide settled and Sydney started playing rubbish.

McFlynn gave away another free kick, this time for a pretty good slide tackle but with studs showing. A guy behind me asked if anyone could tell him if McFlynn ever tackled without studs up.

Adelaide’s defence was well-organised. They held their lines and Sydney’s one-two chips were ineffectual. Yet in the 37th minute Petratos flicked on for Cazarine who shot to Galekovic.

A marvellous McFlynn pass got Jamie Coyne into the right corner. Coyne’s cross was good but was not rewarded with contact by a Sydney player. Another good ball to Coyne led to another fine cross and this time Cazarine put a gentle header on target.

In the 44th minute Cazarine seemed free on goal but instead of shooting at the first opportunity cut inside Fabian Barbiero, who got the slightest touch on the ball but sufficient to rob Cazarine and make things safe for Adelaide.

Right on half time Cazarine got his head on another cross, this time from the left; it was soft but at a good angle and Galekovic had to dive to hold.

Adelaide’s approach had been so physical that fans around me were wondering which player would be sent off first.

Cazarine was still Sydney’s most likely as the second half began. Five minutes in and another header hit the right post. Kisel put a ball through for Petratos, who was just offside. Emerton was about to make a rare break down the right but Petratos could not deliver the requisite ball. (Or a shit ball, in the words of the guy behind me who didn’t want Sydney to score because it would ruin his betting options.)

In the 56th minute Reddy fouled Bruce Djite. Reddy saved the penalty kick but Dario Vidosic had no trouble putting away the rebound. Sydney were trailing again.

Pascal Bosschaart played a clever ball to Kisel who hit a fine shot that was nevertheless easy for Galekovic to collect.

Rhyan Grant had been unable to make any mark this week and was replaced by Juho Makela, who created a good chance off a corner as soon as he came on. Cazarine created another chance and crowd expectations were still high.

In the 66th minute, after several half chances and another cross from Coyne, Sydney levelled thanks to a bouncing shot from Petratos that found target in off the left post.

With 20 minutes to go Sydney were running hard. Galekovic cleared over Cazarine and Kisel shot high. Makela was almost played into Adelaide’s penalty area as Sydney attacked and attacked and attacked. And still got seven players back against Adelaide’s three when the visitors had a rare chance to counter.

Cazarine got a deserved ovation when he was replaced by youngster Mitchell Mallia, who was not perturbed by the opposition.

In the 80th minute Reddy made a good save following some tormenting Adelaide play around Sydney’s penalty area.

Mallia got in a good cross, Ramsay saw red, Mullen saw red blood running from his brow and Galekovic proved a master at running down time.

I couldn’t bring myself to attend the after-match press conference. There are few things less alluring that Kossies that are too smug.



2011/2012 Hyundai A-League - Round 12
7:30pm, Thursday 22 December, 2011
at Sydney Football Stadium

Sydney FC 2
(Karol Kisel 19' pen, Dimitri Petratos 66')
drew with
Adelaide United FC 2
(Daniel Mullen 7', Dario Vidosic 56')

    Crowd: 10,212

    MATCH STATS:

    Sydney FC :
    Player listing:
    1. Liam Reddy (gk), 3. Jamie Coyne, 4. Pascal Bosschaart, 5. Michael Beauchamp, 7. Brett Emerton, 8. Karol Kisel, 9. Bruno Cazarine (24. Mitchell Mallia ‘79), 11. Dimitri Petratos, 12. Shannon Cole, 15. Terry McFlynn (c), 23. Rhyan Grant (18. Juho Makela ’59)

    Substitutes not used: 2. Sebastian Ryall20. Ivan Necevski [rgk]

    Coach: Vítezslav Lavicka

    Yellow Cards: Terry McFlynn 43, Liam Reddy 55, Pascal Bosschaart 64, Bruno Cazarine 71
    Red Cards: Nil

    Adelaide United FC :
    Player listing:
    1. Eugene Galekovic (gk), 3. Nigel Boogaard, 5. Daniel Mullen, 7. Zenon Caravella (2. Osama Malik ‘79), 10. Dario Vidosic (16. Spase Dilevski ‘64), 11. Bruce Djite, 14. Cameron Watson, 17. Iain Ramsay, 18. Fabian Barbiero (12. Antony Golec ‘82), 21. Francisco Usucar, 22. Milan Susak.

    Substitutes not used: Mark Birighitti (rgk)

    Coach: John Kosmina

    Yellow Cards: Daniel Mullen 13', Nigel Boogaard 19', Iain Ramsay 34', 88'
    Red Cards: Iain Ramsay 88'


    Referee: Jarred Gillett tba/10
    Assistant Ref 1: Murray Wilson, Assistant Ref 2: Allyson Flynn; 4th Official: Kurt Ams

    BOTN Player Points:
    3. Bruno Cazarine (Sydney FC)
    2. Daniel Mullen (Adelaide United)
    1. Karol Kisel (Sydney FC)

    Pitch rating: 6/10

    Game rating: 7/10

    Match report, photos and ratings: By Stephen Webb



















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