Hyundai A-League - 2012/2013 - Season 8

Record crowd enjoys Sydney’s
second consecutive defeat
By Stephen Webb

2012/2013 Hyundai A-League - Round 2
5 pm, Saturday 13 October, 2012
at Sydney Football Stadium

Sydney FC 2
(Allessandro Del Piero 26', Blake Powell 73')
lost to
Newcastle Jets FC 3
(Ryan Griffiths 11', Emile Heskey 41', Craig Goodwin 62')

(Photo by Stephen Webb for BOTN)

At the press conference after Sydney FC lost 2-3 to Newcastle Jets, Newcastle coach Gary van Egmond seemed more disappointed than Sydney’s Ian Crook.

And so he should: Newcastle easily could have won by two or three goals more.

Some commentators have tried to tell us that for neutrals it was a wonderful exhibition of football. Over 30,000 Sydney fans might not agree.

Sydney were disappointing, especially in the first half, when they played as though they had never even heard the word “defend”.

Alessandro Del Piero was again seen with his hands over his head, on his hips or gesturing at dozy teammates.

According to Crook, Sydney turned the ball over too easily and then were left chasing the game.

True, they created some chances toward the end but — usual story — too little too late.

Emile Heskey, Craig Goodwin and Ryan Griffiths had it all too easy for so long that if Sydney had salvaged a point it would have been an injustice.

Brett Emerton performed to better effect in the second half when he was moved forward. But it didn’t make up for his contribution to Sydney’s defensive blunders in the first half.

Captain Terry McFlynn, whose announcement in the team line-up was not warmly received by the crowd before the game, was cheered off when he was replaced by Paul Reid in the second half. Not with the appreciation the Sydney fans cheered off Heskey but because they were glad to see him go. Harsh perhaps. But no amount of hard work and saving spoils in the thick of play can make up for missing crucial tackles that result in goals to the opposition.

The signs weren’t good when Del Piero lost the ball to Heskey straight from Sydney’s kick off.

Goodwin skinned Emerton, Ali Abbas went in too hard, Heskey stole the ball off McFlynn’s toes and Heskey, amid Newcastle’s high press, forced Ivan Necevski to kick the ball out.

Fans around me — regular season ticket holders — were impressed by the “unbelievable” crowd; how the upper stand around the corporate boxes was nearly full.

Some were a tad cynical about the sudden appearance of “football fans”.

Abbas was robbed by Ruben Zadkovich and Newcastle broke away and won a corner. The failed clearing header by Trent McClenahan allowed Ryan Griffiths to shoot home and Sydney were losing after only 11 minutes.

Adam Griffiths gave the ball away and Goodwin got away from Emerton and fired a shot at the right post.

On a Newcastle free kick from the right sideline near the corner Heskey headed wide.

A good tackle by Josh Mitchell stopped Mitchell Mallia, a linesman copped a serve from the stands for incorrectly calling Dimitri Petratos offside, and Kruno Lovrek wouldn’t jump for an Emerton cross.

Ryan Griffiths easily dispossessed Adam Griffiths and Del Piero hit a poor, high shot. (The crowd cheered excitedly anyway.)

Del Piero won more applause for a neat back-heel pass and then for winning a free kick.

Newcastle were playing long balls — the sort of balls normally frowned upon — but they only had to fall within 15 metres of Heskey for the former England striker to keep Newcastle on the offensive.

Tiago Calvano earned a yellow for studs up on Del Piero. The greater sin was conceding a free kick within striking distance of goal. Del Piero took the kick and it was a ripper — over the wall and beating Ben Kennedy to the top left corner.

Thirty-five thousand people rose to their feet. This is what they had come for.

Adam Griffiths tumbled Heskey and Del Piero gave Mallia a little talk about the need to run off the ball.

Lots of spite had entered the game, which was broken by frequent fouls.

Heskey won another header and Goodwin beat two Sydney defenders before missing a great chance, shooting wide to the right of goal.

Jobe Wheelhouse ran unmarked into Sydney’s penalty area but stumbled over his shot. Then Heskey scored thanks to some fine finishing, a good pass from Ryan Griffiths and more ridiculous defending on Sydney’s part.

Newcastle could have scored a couple more before half time.

Bar queue talk was about Sydney’s poor defence, when was Bosschaart coming back, and how well Heskey held up the ball.

Goodwin almost presented Newcastle with another goal shortly after the break; only good fortune prevented Sydney going further behind.

Emerton was beaten by Goodwin and then fouled him.

Sebastian Ryall replaced Petratos, allowing Emerton to play further forward.

Ryan Griffiths had a great turn and shot from the edge of the Sydney penalty area — but straight to Ivan Necevski.

Newcastle had a free kick from a similar position to Del Piero’s goal but Necevski made a good save.

Reid replaced McFlynn and Sydney’s transformation was nearly complete. Sydney spent more time in Newcastle’s half and I saw less of the game because the crowd around me spent more time on their feet.

A great ball from the centre found Ryall on the right and then something good happened. Sydney had a chance.

It was looking better going forward but still pretty dismal at the other end. Adam Griffiths apparently hurt his hamstring when Sydney unsuccessfully played for offside as Goodwin was beautifully played into the penalty area by Ryan Griffiths for a simple shot over Necevski.

Sydney continued to pick up, however. Or was it Newcastle tiring? A fitness question?

Del Piero got into the Newcastle penalty area but poked the ball to the left of goal.

Adam Griffiths was replaced by Blake Powell, who shone as Sydney continued to dominate.

A good long ball from Reid won Sydney a corner. Newcastle countered with Scott Neville beating a host of players before Powell cleaned him up as he was about to shoot.

Reid broke away and won a free kick. Sydney crossed from the right and a great shot called a good save from Kennedy.

Powell on a long ball missed with a volley but almost lobbed under the crossbar heading his second attempt.

Ryall played wide to Emerton who crossed to Powell on the left. Powell headed back inside the right post and Sydney were only losing 2-3.

Goodwin missed a good free shot from the left of Sydney’s penalty area after some fine build up work by Newcastle down the right.

Fabio, who like Emerton almost made amends for a poor first half, won a corner down the left. Newcastle cleared off the line.

There was huge applause for Heskey as he was replaced by Michael Bridges.

A lovely ball from Fabio almost found Del Piero on goal but Tiago and Newcastle’s back line were effectively intercepting such efforts.

Newcastle substitute Bernardo Ribeiro also weaved his way through Sydney’s defence and shot on target. Necevski fended the ball away and Fabio stopped the shot from the rebound.

After the game Del Piero said there had been some improvement on the previous week’s game and the fans would be proud of Sydney at the end of the season.

2011/2012 Hyundai A-League - Round 2
5:30pm, Saturday 13 October, 2012
at Sydney Football Stadium

Sydney FC 2
(Allessandro Del Piero 26', Blake Powell 73')
lost to
Newcastle Jets FC 3
(Ryan Griffiths 11', Emile Heskey 41', Craig Goodwin 62')

    Crowd: 35,419


    Sydney FC :
    Player listing:
    1. Ivan Necevski (gk), 3. Fabio, 7. Brett Emerton, 8. Adam Griffiths (12. Blake Powell +63’), 10. Alessandro Del Piero, 11. Dimitri Petratos (2. Sebastian Ryall +47’) 14. Mitchell Mallia, 15. Terry McFlynn (c) (9. Paul Reid +57’), 18. Trent McClenahan, 19. Kruno Lovrek, 22. Ali Abbas.

    Substitutes not used: 20. Vedran Janjetovic (rgk)

    Coach: Ian Crook

    Yellow Cards: Petratos, Ryall, Abbas
    Red Cards: Nil

    Newcastle Jets FC :
    Player listing:
    1. Ben Kennedy (gk), 2. Scott Neville (6. Ben Kantarovski 70’), 3. Tiago Calvano, 4. Josh Mitchell, 5. Dominik Ritter, 8. Ruben Zadkovich, 9. Emile Heskey (19. Michael Bridges 77’), 15. Craig Goodwin, 16. Jobe Wheelhouse (c), 17. James Virgili (10. Bernardo Ribeiro 64’), 23. Ryan Griffiths.

    Substitutes not used: 30. Jack Duncan (rgk)

    Coach: Gary van Egmond

    Yellow Cards: Tiago, Ryan Griffiths, Kantarovski
    Red Cards: Nil

    Referee: Chris Beath tba/10
    Assistants: Brad Hobson, Scott Edeling; 4th Official: Tim McGilchrist

    BOTN Player Points:
    3. Del Piero (Sydney FC)
    2. Heskey (Newcastle Jets)
    1. Goodwin (Newcastle Jets)

    Pitch rating: tba/10

    Game rating: tba/10

    Match report, photos and ratings: Stephen Webb

(Earlier Unicef charity game)

(Earlier Unicef charity game)

Disclaimer: The content of this report is the responsibility of the writer. Stats are either as recorded by the writer at the game, or as supplied by FFA, or a mixture - no responsibility can be taken for their compete accuracy although we do strive for that. Any photos used here, unless attributed, are as implicitly supplied by FFA and used by assumed permission.

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