Westfield W-League - 2011/2012 - Season 4

Sydney saved from profligacy embarrassment!
(Refer Macquarie Dictionary)
By Stephen Webb

2011/2012 W-League - Round 2
3:00pm - Saturday 29 October, 2011 - Leichardt Oval

Sydney FC 2
(Kylie Ledbrook 9’, Megan Rapinoe 83’)
Melbourne Victory FC 1
(Jodie Taylor 63’ pen)

United States international guest Megan Rapinoe saved Sydney FC from the embarrassment of its profligacy with a late goal at a steamy Leichhardt Oval on Saturday.

Sydney dominated the first half and squandered several good chances during a more even second half.

Victory could easily have copped another 5-1 hiding but might consider themselves unlucky not come away with a point.

Sydney drew first blood in the ninth minute after a stretch of easy possession.

A ball played back from the left of goal found Kylie Ledbrook on the edge of the area. Ledbrook almost casually lobbed the ball over the crowded box and beyond keeper Brianna Davey.

Victory’s Ashley Brown played a nice ball, meeting the run of Jodie Taylor, who was just offside.

A foul on Sydney captain Danielle Brogan drew Aaaaaws from the home crowd. Rapinoe’s free kick was not far over the crossbar.

Teigan Allen was often free on Sydney’s right — in fact Sydney seem good at creating space on both wings — but her team mates seemed not to trust her.

Davey at first seemed nervous and lacking in confidence but Melbourne would be glad of her by game’s end.

But Taylor was Victory’s stand out performer.

She was good down the left before crossing towards Kendall Fletcher at the far post.

Louisa Bisby had a shot blocked after Renee Rollason turned over possession in the middle of the park.

With Sydney again on the attack, Rebekah Stott was strong denying Rapinoe another chance but then fouled Rapinoe on a break chasing a long clearance from Allison Lipsher.

From 30 metres, Rapinoe’s free kick beat Davey but hit the crossbar.

On 35 minutes Taylor received the ball in Sydney’s penalty area to the right of goal and it took a good tackle and desperate collect by Lipsher to stop her.

Two minutes later Taylor was running into the Sydney penalty area, beating one defender before another fine tackle blocked her shot.

Teresa Polias was free on the right of the Melbourne goal to receive a long cross from the left. Polias’ lovely ball back across goal found Rapinoe, who met the ball sweetly with her head but directed it just left of goal.

In time added on Sarah Walsh was sent through on the left by Rapinoe. Walsh’s well-placed shot to the far post was just fended away by the diving Davey. From the corner, Ledbrook’s shot was blocked and a header by Brogan was palmed over by Davey.

Davey was called into action early in the second half, coming off her line to again stop Walsh with a good chance. Victory’s defence regrouped in time to prevent Rapinoe benefitting from the rebound.

A long ball by Servet Uzunlar on the right fell to Rapinoe near the Melbourne goal box but Rapinoe could react in time to capitalise on her good fortune.

Sydney players roamed around the Melbourne penalty area, with the panicked Davey constantly calling, “No shots! No shots!” It wasn’t clear that her team mates understood they were meant to be blocking the shots, with a Sydney player allowed a free dig from 25 metres, almost squeezing the ball into the top left corner.

Lipsher had her work cut out for her, too, needing to dive at the feet of an opponent.

Rapinoe and Walsh got in each other’s way down the left, Rollason was again dangerously slow on the ball and Sydney hit long balls for Walsh, who wasn’t quick enough for the chase. Rollason was good getting to the line and pulling back for Polias, who made a poor effort in front of goal, sliding and pushing the ball wide.

Walsh was replaced by Caitlin Foord.

A nice ball through for Allen was too close to Davey and Melbourne countered with a great ball for Taylor, who skilfully beat a defender and seemed certain to score in the top right corner — but for a spectacular save from Lipsher.

Taylor soon found the net, with much more ease, sending Lipsher the wrong way and converting a penalty.

Sydney reacted by picking up the pace.

Rollason missed an easy chance on a Sydney corner, Allen was replaced by Brittany Whitfield after skying a shot from the right of the penalty area and Stott was good denying a powering Whitfield.

The effect of Melbourne’s improved pressure on Sydney this half was Sydney hitting too many long balls — and getting drawn into physical contests for which they were more often penalised.

A good Sydney build-up down the left saw them with possession in the middle where Ledbrook found space. Her response to Davey’s “No shot!” was to shoot poorly.

Rollason was replaced by Heather Garriock.

Foord down the left found the Melbourne goal line, cut in and crossed for Rapinoe but Davey was down to intercept.

Rapinoe’s winner came as the ball again was played from the left to right across the box; from Foord to Whitfield and on to the energetic American. Davey appeared to have her measure, getting her body behind the ball, but Rapinoe lifted the ball over the supine keeper and into the back left corner of the net.

Sydney came again, with Garriock pushing the ball to the left of goal on a Rapinoe corner from the right. Then Davey was just good enough to get the ball before Whitfield on a cross from Rapinoe on the right of the penalty area.

Melbourne’s final flourish came of course from Taylor, penetrating into the left of the Sydney penalty area and going and going before shooting from a near impossible angle, the ball just rolling beyond the right post.

Sydney play well out of defence but, even with Rapinoe, struggled for ideas in the final third. Melbourne will be an even more difficult proposition in their next encounter.

2011/2012 W-League - Round 2
3:00pm - Saturday 29 October, 2011 - Leichardt Oval

Sydney FC 2
(Kylie Ledbrook 9’, Megan Rapinoe 83’)

Melbourne Victory FC 1
(Jodie Taylor 63’ pen)

    Crowd: tba


    Sydney FC :
    Player listing: 1. Allison Lipsher (gk), 2. Teresa Polias, 3. Danielle Brogan, 4. Renee Rollason (7. Heather Garriock +77’), 5. Estelle Johnson, 6. Servet Uzunlar, 9. Sarah Walsh (8. Caitlin Foord +59’), 10. Kylie Ledbrook, 12. Teigan Allen (13. Brittany Whitfield +70’), 15. Thea Slatyer, 18. Megan Rapinoe

    Substitutes not used: 20. Monique Jackson (rgk)

    Coach: John Stajic

    Yellow Cards: Caitlin Foord 73’, Megan Rapinoe 75’
    Red Cards: Nil

    Melbourne Victory FC :
    Player listing: 1. Brianna Davey (gk), 6. Rita Mankowska, 7. Stephanie Catley, 10. Jodie Taylor, 4. Kendall Fletcher, 2. Rebekah Stott, 8. Ashley Brown (9. Georgie Koutrouvelis +81’), 15. Amy Jackson, 16. Louisa Bisby (13. Katrina Gorry +63’), 5. Danielle Johnson, 11. Caitlin Friend (19. Laura Spiranovic +86’)

    Substitutes not used: 20. Cassandra Dimovski (rgk)

    Coach: tba

    Yellow Cards: Rebekah Stott 31’, Katrina Gorry 67’, Jodie Taylor 75’
    Red Cards: Nil

    Referee: /10
    Assistants: ; 4th official:

    BOTN players to watch:
    3. Megan Rapinoe (Sydney FC), 2. Jodie Taylor (Melbourne Victory FC), 1. Brianna Davey (Melbourne Victory FC) or Danielle Brogan (Sydney FC)

    Pitch rating: 7/10

    Game rating: 7/10

    Match Report, Photo and Ratings: Stephen Webb

No other photos

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