Hyundai A-League - 2011/2012 - Season 7

Sydney performance was embarrassing
By Stephen Webb

2011/2012 Hyundai A-League - Round 18
5 pm, Sunday 5 February, 2012
at Sydney Football Stadium

Sydney FC 2
(Hirofumi Moriyasu 47', Michael Beauchamp 72')
lost to
Newcastle Jets FC 5
(Nikolai Topor Stanley 22', Ruben Zadkovich 29', Jeremy Brockie 38', 87', Ali Abbas 96')


(Photo by Stephen Webb for BOTN)

Coach and captain have said the performance was embarrassing.

Sydney fans will have their own terms for that euphemism. Their team had no answers to a Newcastle that, for most of the match, outplayed them across the park.

The sun was finally shining on Sydney but it wasn’t shining on Sydney FC, with a coach on his way out and many players who should be anxious about their futures in a Sydney starting line-up. And their finals chances are dimming.

My Chinese friends to my right asked before the game if I thought Sydney would win the competition. They acted dismayed at my pessimism. “Come on! This is Chinese New Year.” As they walked away before the final whistle, they waved their good luck fantasy away. “Don’t worry about it.”

Emerton was out injured which, at first, seemed not such a bad thing. Fifteen minutes into the game we were praying for his return. Ryan Grant was right back. Hiro Moriyasu got a start at left midfield.

Newcastle started with three backs. For five minutes that seemed a huge mistake. Nick Carle made a quick impact, winning a free kick 26 metres from goal. Scott Jamieson found Michael Beauchamp free near the left post. Beauchamp could have — should have done better — if he realised the time at his disposal. But he glanced his header wide of goal.

Sydney maintained the momentum and all the possession. Mark Bridge with a run on goal from the right crossed far too early for Karol Kisel. Ben Kennedy tried to dribble the ball away from goal with Sydney all over him. They got the ball back to Bruno Cazarine, who lobbed over goal.

Jamieson crossed from the left just over Cazarine.

Newcastle got a break and Tarek Elrich, crossing from the left, found Ryan Griffiths just as he was crossing the line to the right of goal. Then Elrich hit a good ball across the face of goal but no-one was home.

Terry McFlynn won the ball but played a rubbish pass forward when Kisel was free to his right.

Jamieson kept chipping in crosses in Cazarine’s direction but Cazarine had little hope with Nicolai Topor Stanley and Tiago Calvano hovering over him.

Carle wide on the left found Bridge in the right corner but Kisel was not in time to meet his cross.

In the 18th minute Francis Jeffers got a break into the Sydney penalty area and missed a wonderful chance, pushing the ball outside the right post. Sarcastic howls of despair came from the guy in front of me.

Jeremy Brockie got to the line to the left of the Sydney goal but Beauchamp was quick to shut him down and put him off his cross.

Newcastle were beginning to look as likely to score as Sydney, even though they hadn’t been in the final third as often. But then ...

In the 20th minute Newcastle had a corner from the left. Liam Reddy stopped Griffiths but the ball bounced up for Topor Stanley to head inside the right post — which Moriyasu had left vacant. Sydney were losing again.

Fans around me couldn’t understand how Newcastle couldn’t even get the ball out of their half for ten minutes and now Sydney could hardly get a decent touch. “Have they gone to sleep?” “Don’t know but something happened.”

In the 30th minute Ruben Zadkovich was sent to goal by a clever header from Elrich on the left sideline. Zadkovich scored inside the right post. Now two former Sydney players had scored against their old club. Zadkovich emphasised the point to The Cove, who booed him henceforth.

“Pity Bridge can’t do that against his former team,” came a bitter voice from behind.

Bridge had a half chance but couldn’t beat Kennedy. Carle got through but just poked the ball through to the Newcastle keeper. Topor Stanley stopped another Bridge attempt and Bridge went down hurt.

“Take him off! Bring a striker on!” And that striker was to be Juho Makela.

By the 38th minute Newcastle were plonking the ball all around the pitch at will. The inevitable third goal came after another cross from Elrich, the ball popped on for Brockie to head home with Jamieson watching him.

Consensus emerged that Sydney were hopeless at basic defence. Straightforward football gets them every time.

With the second half under way, Jamieson got to the line and played across the face of goal. The box was full of players. No-one got a touch.

“Two more missed chances and Newcastle will score.”

But no. The ball was played out of the Newcastle penalty area and across to Moriyasu at the top left of the box. The shot came from nowhere but found target, beating Kennedy inside the right post.

“We’re back!” I detected more sarcasm.

Jeffers received the ball unmarked outside Sydney’ penalty area in front of goal but cleared the top left corner.

Carle almost found Makela on the edge of the Newcastle box. Jamieson, Cazarine and Carle all had half-chance shots. Carle and Kisel exchanged passes until Kisel appealed in vain for a penalty.

McFlynn finally hit a good ball, this over to Kisel on the left of the box but Kisel’s cross was half cleared and Sydney couldn’t take advantage. A Sydney corner from the right was cleared to Kisel, who skied high over goal from 11 metres.

Moriyasu on a break found Makela on the left of the box. Makela punted a bomb to nowhere.

“Seriously, Newcastle could come off and we still wouldn’t score.”

“Square ball across the box! Square ball across the box!”

McFlynn was replaced by Joel Chianese, with Moriyasu taking McFlynn’s defensive position. Jamieson made a good run into the Newcastle box but was stopped by Jacob Pepper. Chianese made a great run down the left, cut in and crossed behind a line of Sydney strikers. Sydney came again and Grant shot high.

Michael Bridges came on for Jeffers. Bridges added an element of stability for Newcastle ... and the ability to tease Sydney’s defence some more.

Then came some great keeping from Kennedy, twice denying Chianese on another break from the left

Bridges fouled Kisel 26 metres from goal. Jamieson’s kick was played away for a Sydney corner. The corner was cleared but a fine ball back into the box found Cazarine at the left corner of the goal box. Cazarine headed down and Beauchamp scored his first A League goal.

Game on. Briefly.

Some nice skill on receipt of a ball from Ryan Griffiths saw Bridges turn the defence and shoot across goal just outside the left post.

Kennedy was good again stopping Makela, coming into the right side of the Newcastle penalty area.

In the 88th minute Sydney fans appealed for a handball but the game continued. Substitute Ali Abbas shot, Liam Reddy made a good save but Brockie got his second goal on the rebound.

Newcastle players started hanging back during the six minutes of time added, comfortable they had the three points. Even so, the fifth goal came sweetly and easily. Reddy failed to make it to the feet of Brockie and Newcastle’s passing phase continued to Abbas who made no mistake.

Sydney fans around me who five minutes earlier held some faint hope for a miracle recovery up and left. There’s only so much embarrassment even the hardiest fan can take.



2011/2012 Hyundai A-League - Round 18
5 pm, Sunday 5 February, 2012
at Sydney Football Stadium

Sydney FC 2
(Hirofumi Moriyasu 47', Michael Beauchamp 72')
lost to
Newcastle Jets FC 5
(Nikolai Topor Stanley 22', Ruben Zadkovich 29', Jeremy Brockie 38', 87', Ali Abbas 96')

    Crowd: 10,232

    MATCH STATS:

    Sydney FC :
    Player listing:
    1. Liam Reddy, 4. Pascal Bosschaart, 5. Michael Beauchamp, 6. Hirofumi Moriyasu (22. Nathan Sherlock ‘78), 8. Karol Kisel, 9. Bruno Cazarine, 10 Nick Carle, 15. Terry McFlynn (c) (16. Joel Chianese ‘64), 19. Mark Bridge (18. Juho Makela ‘36), 21. Scott Jamieson, 23. Rhyan Grant

    Substitutes not used: 20. Ivan Necevski (rgk)

    Coach: Vitislav Laviska

    Yellow Cards: Terry McFlynn 23'
    Red Cards: Nil

    Newcastle Jets FC :
    Player listing:
    1. Ben Kennedy, 2. Taylor Regan (13. Sung-Hwan Byun ‘72), 4. Nikolai Topor-Stanley, 5. Tiago Calvano, 8. Jeremy Brockie, 10. Ruben Zadkovich, 11. Tarek Elrich (22. Ali Abbas ‘72), 12. Jobe Wheelhouse, 23. Ryan Griffiths, 24. Francis Jeffers (9. Michael Bridges ‘67), 25. Jacob Pepper

    Substitutes not used: 19. Matthew Nash (rgk)

    Coach: Gary van Egmond

    Yellow Cards: Taylor Regan 54, Jacob Pepper 67'
    Red Cards: Wheelhouse 85'


    Referee: Matt Gillett/10
    Assistants: Ryan Gallagher, Lance Greenshields; 4th Official: Matthew Cropper

    BOTN Player Points:
    3. Nicolai Topor Stanley (Newcastle)
    2. Ben Kennedy (Newcastle)
    1. Jeremy Brockie (Newcastle)

    Pitch rating: 7/10

    Game rating: 7/10

    Match report, photos and ratings: Stephen Webb



















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