Sydney not troubled by challenging Jets

By Corinthian (Paul Green):

Westfield W-League – Season 8 – 2015/2016 – Round 13
2:15pm, Saturday 9th January 2016 – Sydney Olympic Stadium

Sydney FC 2 (Kyah Simon pen 33, Leena Khamis 59)
Newcastle Jets FC 0

Sydney FC had no real problems in defeating Newcastle Jets in the curtain-raiser match played at the Sydney Olympic Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

Their 2-0 win was achieved with minimal fuss, although one of the goals came from an early penalty-kick and the other, in open play, an hour into the game.

The win, in their penultimate match of the season, ensured that the Sky Blues will finish third on the ladder, no Finals’ home matches for them, this year, unfortunately, but a Finals’ berth is theirs all the same.

Their season has been one of a few ups and downs, after a very slow start, but they were quite dominant here and the usually strong Jets, also hoping to sneak into the top four, were seldom a threat, against a team boasting a world-class goalkeeper, admittedly, and a very sound defence, at least on this occasion.

Newcastle had their moments, of course, beginning the game encouragingly enough, with a Gema Simon corner nodded wide by Hannah Bromley after only three minutes.

A couple of minutes later they also pressed strongly, the impressive Caprice Dydasco making a good run down the left and getting in a shot from close-range that Michelle Betos got down to well to effect a fine save.

After that early assault on the Sydney goal the home team took over, Kyah Simon getting through to set up Nicole Bolger for a shot that barely cleared the crossbar in the 18th.

Leena Khamis was always to the forefront and did well in the 26th to feed Princess Ibini, whose abundant speed had been put to good use.

The teenager then laid on a pass for the equally speedy Jasmyne Spencer, who saw her goal-bound effort brilliantly plucked out of the air by Jets’ keeper, Hannah Southwell.

In the 32nd Khamis was sent sprawling by Newcastle defender, Hannah Bromley, who got a card for her trouble and a penalty was awarded to the Sydney side.

Kyah Simon, who’s put a few spot-kicks away this season already, put the ball well beyond the keeper’s reach in convincing fashion.

In the 42nd Bolger dashed clear, but was denied by a smart reaction from Southwell, who raced off her line to boot clear and prevent a second goal before the break.

Southwell also had to tip over another Bolger effort in the 44th, a right-footer from the left, that was well on-target.

Newcastle began the second-half brightly, Dydasco again getting into scoring range, but once more Betos having her measure.

In the 59th Spencer, who was her usual exuberant and mobile self, found some room on the left and crossed nicely for Khamis to enjoy the benefit of a free header, close to goal, making no mistake in the execution.

At 2-0 Sydney were clearly on top and looking like staying there.

A full-length diving save from Betos, in the 61st, again kept Dydasco off the scoresheet; this time, however, the Jets’ midfielder had only tried one hopefully from long-range.

Both teams made substitutions and the Jets probably fancied their chances of pulling one back over the final 15 minutes or so.

Their hopes rose in the 76th, when they won a free-kick on the edge of area, after a handball had been spotted by referee, Kate Jacewicz.

Skipper Gema Simon stuck her shot low, but again Betos was equal to the task and made sure nothing got past her on this important afternoon.

Another late save by Betos, from substitute, Elizabeth Copus-Brown, in stoppage-time, ensured the scoreline remained unchanged.

Sydney FC wind up their season with a match in Melbourne, against Melbourne City, the hosts already acclaimed as runaway title-winners; but having lost to the City team on the opening day of the season, 6-0, we would expect the Sydney team to go all out to ‘balance the books’, even though they may need to come to Melbourne again for the Final, should they beat second-placed Canberra United in their challenging semi-final match.

Newcastle Jets still have a chance of finishing fourth if they can beat Brisbane Roar at home in the live televised fixture next Sunday at Hunter Stadium, but a point is all the visitors need to retain their three point margin over the Novocastrians.

An Adelaide win over Canberra, could unsettle them both, however, with The Reds capable of overtaking the two teams, if they can win well in the South Australian capital.

Match details

Crowd: 2,650

Sydney FC:  1. Michelle BETOS (gk); 2 Elizabeth RALSTON , 14 Alanna KENNEDY; 15 Teigen ALLEN, 6 Teresa POLIAS (c), 11 Natalie TOBIN (16 Hannah BACON 90); 7 Nicola BOLGER (12 Olivia PRICE 85), 19 Leena KHAMIS;  5 Jasmyne SPENCER, 17 Kyah SIMON,  9 Princess IBINI (4 Sunny FRANCO  67)
Sub not used: 18 Shamiran KHAMIS (rgk)

Yellow cards: Nil; Red cards: Nil
Coach: Daniel Barrett

Newcastle Jets FC: 1. Hannah SOUTHWELL (gk); 7 Gema SIMON (C), 19 Hannah BROMLEY, 4 Megan OYSTER, 14 Brooke MILLER;  5 Caprice DYDASCO, 6 Cassidy DAVIS (16 Siahn BOZANIC 74); 17 Jenna KINGSLEY (15 Elizabeth Copus-Brown 63), 10 Rhali DOBSON (18 Claire WHEELER 63), 12 Chloe LOGARZO; 9 Tara ANDREWS
Subs not used: RGK 20 Claire COELHO

Yellow cards: Brooke Miller 47, Hannah Bromley 82; Red cards: Nil
Coach: Craig Deans

Referee: Kate Jacewicz
Assistants: Sarah Ho and Lily David; Fourth Official: Kelly Jones

Ratings and points

Referee: 9/10
Match: 7/10
Pitch: 6/10

Players noted: Kyah Simon (SFC) Michelle Betos (SFC), Alanna Kennedy(SFC), Caprice Dydasco (NJ), Gema Simon(NJ), Chloe Logarzo (NJ)

By Corinthian