R16 Review: Most take advantage of second Brisbane stumble

by Jeremy Ruane:
with the compliments of www.sportswebsoccer.com

HAL Review

Three teams took advantage of a second successive loss for table-topping Brisbane Roar to leave the top five teams in the Hyundai A-League covered by just three points after the Australia Day weekend round of action.

League leaders Brisbane shipped four goals for the second successive round as they copped a 4-1 hiding from Adelaide United in front of 12,923 fans at Suncorp Stadium, where Corey Brown put through his own net twenty minutes into the contest to give the visitors a lead they maintained until the interval.

Soon after it, however, Brisbane were on level terms thanks to Henrique’s penalty, though it was one which referee Jarred Gillett shouldn’t have given, as the striker tripped himself up to earn it.

To say Adelaide weren’t best pleased is something of an understatement, but they channelled their aggression in the best possible manner, Bruce Djite ending a personal goalscoring drought some 23 matches long by restoring United’s advantage from the penalty spot in the 56th minute.

Just to prove he had regained his goalscoring touch, Djite bagged a second goal eleven minutes later before Marcelo Carrusca capped off Adelaide’s display with a gorgeous fourth goal in stoppage time, not long after Eli Babalj had to leave the field with a nasty-looking knee injury.

Brisbane’s stumble opened the door for Western Sydney Wanderers to take over at the top of the table, and they duly took full advantage, fending off Central Coast Mariners 2-1 at Central Coast Stadium, where 13,105 fans gathered to see former Liverpool star Luis Garcia make his debut for the bottom-placed club.

He began the match as a substitute, but soon after entering the fray in the second half played a critical part in Coast’s equaliser, Fabio Ferreira’s 67th minute strike bringing about parity after Mark Bridge had taken full advantage of a defensive blunder to plunder the opening goal eleven minutes into the contest.

In between times, Dario Vidosic hit the post for the visitors, while soon after levelling the scores, Ferreira spurned a great chance to give the home team a surprise lead against the former AFC Champions League winners.

Wests weren’t to be denied, however, and, aided in some part by Nick Montgomery’s studs-up tackle on Golgol Mebrahtu, which earned Coast’s skipper a red card, the visitors pinched the points late on, Brendon Santalab taking full advantage of another defensive mishap to clinch the win for Wests two minutes from time.

Two days later, Melbourne City overhauled Brisbane after overcoming Wellington Phoenix 3-1 in front of 10,825 fans at AAMI Park, where the victors produced some at times scintillating attacking football.

Bruno Fornaroli opened the scoring in the twelfth minute, in doing so completing the set – he has scored against all the other A-League teams, and has achieved the feat in just sixteen matches.

Harry Novillo doubled their advantage on the half-hour, and made the game safe four minutes into the second half with a thunderous strike. The post denied him a hat-trick soon afterwards.

The visitors had their moments in attack, and they deserved their 66th minute goal, which was well worth the wait – a Roly Bonevacia rocket which found the top corner of the net from fully thirty yards.

That defeat confirmed Wellington’s drop to eighth place on the table, a result of Perth Glory’s stunning come-from-behind 6-1 win at Newcastle Jets, the visitors becoming the first team in A-League history to score six goals on the road.

Buoyed on by 9,403 fans at Hunter Stadium, Newcastle began brightly, and richly deserved their lead when Milos Trifunovic headed home in the fourteenth minute. But it all went downhill for them after that, with Nigel Boogaard’s dismissal for two bookable offences on the stroke of half-time the nadir.

Perth were already in front by this stage, Chris Harold’s leveller half-way through the first spell being supplemented in style by Diego Castro on the stroke of half-time, the striker crowning a splendid seven-man, fifteen-pass move in fitting fashion to make it 2-1.

When Daniel Mullen put through his own net three minutes into the second spell, the writing was on the wall for Newcastle, and Harold, Alex Grant and Castro afforded the home team no respite as Perth leap-frogged both the vanquished and Wellington on the standings.

All the struggling teams are a long way adrift of the play-off spots, where Melbourne Victory eased ahead of Sydney FC on goal difference after Matt Jurman’s own goal eleven minutes from time clinched a hard-earned 1-0 victory for the home team at Etihad Stadium, to the undisguised delight of 30,493 Melburnians who witnessed a match of few chances as defences largely held sway.

Wests and Melbourne City kick off seventeenth round action at Pirtek Stadium on Friday evening, while Adelaide and Newcastle wrap things up at Coopers Stadium on Sunday night.

In between times, there’s a triple treat on Saturday, with Christchurch’s AMI Stadium hosting the clash of Wellington Phoenix and Central Coast to kick off the night’s activities.

That match is followed by Sydney’s battle with Brisbane at Allianz Stadium, before Perth and Melbourne Victory renew their rivalry at NIB Stadium in a repeat of the 2015 FFA Cup Final, which Kevin Muscat’s side won 2-0.

Match details:

Brisbane Roar FC 1 (Henrique (50 pen)) – Adelaide United FC 4 (“oggie” (19), B. Djite (56 pen, 67), M. Carrusca (90)); HT 0-1

Central Coast Mariners FC 1 (F. Ferreira (67))  – Western Sydney Wanderers FC 2 (M. Bridge (11), B. Santalab (88)); HT 0-1

Melbourne City FC 3 (B. Fornaroli (12), H. Novillo (31, 49)) – Wellington Phoenix FC 1 (R. Bonevacia (66)); HT 2-0

Melbourne Victory FC 1 (“oggie” (79)) – Sydney FC 0; HT 0-0

Newcastle Jets FC 1 (M. Trifunovic (14)) – Perth Glory FC 6 (C. Harold (24, 54), D. Castro (45, 88), “oggie” (48), A. Grant (74)); HT 1-2

Ladder

P    W    D    L    F    A    GD    Pts

Western Sydney Wanderers    16    9    3    4    25    16    +9    30

Melbourne City    16    8    4    4    40    27    +13    28

Brisbane Roar    16    8    4    4    23    20    +3    28

Melbourne Victory    16    8    3    5    25    18    +7    27

Sydney FC    16    7    6    3    21    14    +7    27

Adelaide United    16    6    5    5    23    21    +2    23

Perth Glory    16    4    4    8    23    26    -3    16

Wellington Phoenix    16    4    4    8    19    28    -9    16

Newcastle Jets    16    4    4    8    13    25    -12    16

Central Coast Mariners    16    2    3    11    20    37    -17    9

By Jeremy Ruane

Westfield W-League – Season 8 – 2015 /2016 – Semi finals

Sydney FC join Premiers Melbourne City FC in the final next week.

Match details

Canberra United FC 0 – Sydney FC 1 (Jasmyne Spencer 62’)
at McKellar Park, Canberra – Sunday 24 January 2016  (Attendance: 2,131)

Brisbane Roar FC 0 – Melbourne City FC 0  (City win 5-4 on penalties)
on Monday 25 January 2016 – AAMI Park, Melbourne

Ladder:  http://www.w-league.com.au/ladder/w_league

Westfield W-League 2016 Final
Melbourne City FC v Sydney FC
AAMI Park, Melbourne – Sunday 31 January 2016
Kick-off: 2pm  (LIVE on Fox Sports and ABC TV)

Foxtel National Youth League – Version 2 – 2015/20106 – Final

Match details

Sydney FC have been crowned Foxtel National Youth League Champions for the third time thanks to a 5-2 Grand Final win over Adelaide United at Central Coast Stadium, Gosford.

Sydney FC (Mullen 12’,49, Zuvela 23’, Burgess 40’, Gonzalez 56’) defeated Adelaide United FC (Tratt og 32’, Altundag 61’)

Ladder:  http://www.y-league.com.au/ladder/y_league