Melbourne City win comprehensively

By Corinthian (Paul Green):

Hyundai A-League – Season 10 – 2014/2015 – Round 13
5pm, Tuesday 30th December 2014 – Hunter Stadium, Broadmeadow

Newcastle United Jets FC 2 (Montano 71′, Jeronimo 79′)
lost to
Melbourne City FC 5 (Mooy (pen) 4′, Koren 9′ 63′, 74′, Duff 24′)


Playing a game three days after their massive effort in Melbourne against Victory proved beyond the beleaguered Newcastle Jets on Tuesday evening, at Hunter Stadium, as they went down comprehensively to the much improved Melbourne City side.

The visitors gave marquee man, Slovenian striker, Robert Koren, his starting debut, after two separate outings off the bench in earlier matches and the move by shrewd coach, John Van’t Schip, paid off in spades.

Not only did Koren shine, but he clearly brought out the best in the club’s other man import, on the attacking side at least, Damien Duff, who had taken some time to settle at his new Australian club.

The match could not have got off to a worse start for the home side, as an ill-judged tackle from behind on Damien Duff by Jets’ defender, Allan Welsh, earned the City team a penalty, after less than three minutes.

It was  a terribly rash tackle so early in the match and the offender would have had few complaints.

Aaron Mooy, left out of Ange Postecoglou’s Socceroos‘’ squad, but in red-hot form all the same, dispatched the spot-kick perfectly to give his side the early lead.

He completely sent Ben Kennedy the wrong way, the keeper diving to his right when the ball was clinically placed in the opposite corner by dead-ball specialist Mooy.

“Aaron has been playing well every week, he’s very consistent,” said his coach Van’t Schip after the game.

“I know Ange must have found it difficult to leave him out of the squad, but we’ll certainly make the best of his availability now we know he’s staying.

“He doesn’t have one good game and one bad game; he’s working hard and playing well every time,” enthused Van’t Schip.

Mooy was instrumental in the game, of that there was no doubt, but so were many others in the opposition ranks, former Jets’ man James Brown also an important figure on the flank for City.

Mooy sent Brown away down the left in the ninth minute and when Jets’ defender, Adrian Madaschi, made a hash of stopping the former Newcastle player’s attempt at a shot, the ball fell in the path of Koren, who was able to finish tidily and effectively sink any hopes Newcastle might have had of controlling the match.

“They did trouble us with their overlapping runs,” admitted Newcastle coach, Phil Stubbins, later.

“But we had no answer to them at that stage and before we knew it we were three down.

“It was difficult to come back after that and it’s obvious that the huge effort we put in down south against Melbourne Victory had left the players drained.

“I tried to freshen the side up and I had to bring on my regular captain, Kew Jaliens, at half-time to add some stability,” he went on.

“I also sent on Jeronimo and he’ll definitely start in Sydney on Saturday,” revealed the coach.

Duff, who had been the man first brought down, was a lively presence from the start and drew extra confidence and daring from having Robert Koren playing alongside him.

The two combined well and before long both had scored in general play, though the Newcastle defence has to shoulder some of the blame for being somewhat indecisive when clearing any danger.

Duff extended the lead for the visitors in the 24th, when he drilled the ball past a cluster of defenders in the goalmouth, after Patrick Kisnorbo had laid the ball in his path once Mooy’s corner had been won by the City skipper in the air, whose own effort was stopped on the line.

The ball was then relayed back to Duff and the blond-haired striker rifled it past Kennedy, who barely got a glove to it as it snaked over the line.

Holding a 3-0 lead at the break Melbourne City pressed on and made it four around the hour mark, through the unshakable Koren.

Koren netted in the 63rd, after first doing some sterling work in the middle and then releasing substitute David Williams, whose return pass, squared into the area, was put away superbly by the Slovenian.

The Jets managed to pull one back in the 71st and that did not go down too well with Van’t Schip.

“We did slacken off considerably after going 4-0 up and I don’t think that was too helpful.

“We let them score twice today and we can’t afford to do things like that.

Darren Carney took a leaf out of the opposition’s book in dancing down the left flank and putting over a decent cross for Jeronimo to nod on to big striker, Edson Montano whose header flew past Velaphi.

Koren completed his hat-trick ten minutes later to make it 5-1, before earning a rest, but then the Jets netted a second through substitute Jeronimo, who had been a refreshing presence up front after emerging from the bench.

Koren’s goal came after a good cross from another substitute, Mate Dugandzic, from the left, with the finish once more a highly polished one.

Jeronimo finally bundled one home in the 79th, from an initial Andrew Hoole’s cross, after Kisnorbo failed to clear amid much excitement from the home crowd, who nevertheless had booed the team off the field at half-time and did exactly the same at the end.

The pitch was a little sandy in some sections, but neither team seemed inconvenienced by it and the passing nature of Melbourne’s game and the stronger attacking showing by the Jets, later in the game, was not brought about by any shortcomings of the pitch in bringing about major mistakes from defenders.

The decent-sized crowd of almost 10,000 that turned up on an early Tuesday evening, at a stadium bathed in sunshine, on a warm day in the Hunter Valley, certainly got their money’s worth, entertainment-wise at least, but they hardly received the result they were looking for.

Whether they’ll turn up in similar numbers after the Asian Cup in February is another matter,
as their beloved Jets look well off the pace of most of their rivals at the moment.

City may well go and challenge for the title and should at least figure in the top-six Finals’ series but their coach dismissed any talk of a title surge on the strength of this result.

“Yes it was a good result for us and there were plenty of positives, but I’m not going to hail this as the start of a big run for us, as we conceded twice and we still keep making mistakes.

“Koren played well and he’ll only get better, with more game time. Damien Duff played off him well and that was pleasing.

“We’ll have to see where we go from here, after this.

Koren, himself, was more forthcoming.

“Our team started really well today. We scored an early three goals and then the game was easier to control. We showed that we are a good team and we can win games. We want to be on the top of the league, everything looks really good at the moment and hopefully we can keep it going.”

Match details

Crowd:  9,935

Newcastle Jets FC:  20. Ben KENNEDY (gk); 18. Allan WELSH, 6. Adrian MADASCHI (7. Jeronimo NEUMANN 61′), 2. Scott NEVILLE (16. Jacob PEPPER 67′);   11. Andrew HOOLE, 17. James VIRGILI (4. Kew JALIENS (C2 46′); 5. Ben KANTAROVSKI, 8. Zenon CARAVELLA; 9. Joel GRIFFITHS (C1), 23. David CARNEY; 13. Edson MONTANO,
Subs Not Used:  1. Mark BIRIGHITTI (rgk), 19. Mitch COOPER
Yellow cards: James Virgili 20′, Joel Griffiths 26′
Red cards: Nil
Coach: Phil Stubbins

Melbourne City FC:  20. Tando VELAPHI (gk),  4. Connor CHAPMAN, 24. Patrick KISNORBO (C); 3. Robbie WIELAERT, 19. Benjamin GARUCCIO, 5. Erik PAARTALU; 6. Aaron MOOY, 25. Jacob MELLING (15. David WILLIAMS 55′); 10. Robert KOREN (7. Iain RAMSAY 74′), 11. Damien DUFF, 14. James BROWN (23. Mate DUGANDZIC 65′)
Subs Not Used: 1. Andrew REDMAYNE (rg),  27. Ross ARCHBALD,
Yellow cards: Jacob Melling 13′, Damien Duff 58′, Erik Paartalu 75′
Red cards: Nil
Coach: John  van ‘t Schip

Points and ratings
Player points:
3. Robert Koren (MC)
2. Aaron Mooy (MC)
1. Damien Duff (MC)
Match 7/10
Pitch 5/10
Referee:  Steven Lucas 8/10