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Mariners lose third straight at home game

The Central Coast Mariners have conceded their third loss in a row at home, going down 2-0 to Adelaide United.

The Mariners quite literally lost the game in the space of two minutes; both goals conceded in quick succession at the bottom end of the first half, courtesy of Pablo Sanchez.


However, it’s not the first time the Mariners have lost to Adelaide in recent weeks, having been defeated 3-2 last week in the FFA Cup.

They would have been hoping for revenge today, but alas, in front of 6,404 of their home fans, they just couldn’t do it.

The first half started off in fairly unspectacular form. The play, like the weather, was sporadic and looked like it might be threatening disaster in fits and bursts.

Patches of heavy rain and hurricane winds resulted in neither team looking fully comfortable on the ball, but the players showed some resilience in the face of adversity.

Sanchez had his first look at the goal in the 17th minute when he almost made it 1-0, but Josh Rose managed to save the Mariners by getting his bod between the ball and back of the net.

The best chance for the Mariners came in the 22nd minute from Mitchell Duke after a ripper of a run from Michael Neill. Duke, who incidentally holds the record for the most shots on goal this A-League season, didn’t manage to slip his shot past Adelaide custodian, Eugene Galekovic.

A nasty tackle courtesy of Adelaide’s Osaka Malick against Nick Fitzgerald almost resulted in a goal for the Mariners in the 36th minute, but Galekovic managed to tip Matt Sims’ penalty over the net.

Then, the dreaded goals: they came in the 39th and 42nd minutes, with the ball pommelled forward by Fabio Ferreira and Tarek Elrich respectively, and slotted past Liam Reddy by Sanchez.

The second goal was a result of some fairly abysmal defending, with the exception of Neill who managed to deflect Sanchez’s first attempt at goal, but not his second.

Phil Moss, who started off the game a good-natured bugger, having a laugh with the crowd when his brolly got blown inside out, looked ready to kill.

“I thought first 40 minutes we gave as good as we got; but then there were two sloppy minutes of defending and two inexcusable goals,” Moss said after the game.

The second half brought a weather change, and a few changes to the starting eleven. Isaka Cernak replaced Duke, and Richard Vernes came on for Matt Sim.

In the conspicuous absence of Malick Mane, the Hungarian seems to have finally been given a chance to make an impact on the Mariners goal tally. Despite having contributed minimally thus far, Vernes managed a neat little run in the 60th minute, but was taken out by the Reds’ defense.

Moss made yet another change in the 64th minute, deciding to replace captain John Hutchinson with Glen Trifiro. The Mariners veteran wasn’t impressed with Moss’s call, going straight down the tunnel to apparently “have a shower”.

“No look its not [a good look], but emotions were running high. Hutch is a ten year server of this club, and I love that about Hutch that he’s emotional and cares, but it wasn’t the time or the place,” Moss said after the game.

Despite Hutchinson being clearly unhappy with the call, Trifiro immediately made an impact, almost scoring in the 67th minute.

Things went from bad to worse for the Mariners, when replacement-captain Nick Montgomery was booked his second yellow card, and was subsequently sent off in the 70th minute. Like his captain before him, it was straight down the tunnel to have a shower.

The remaining Mariners didn’t give up, though. Anthony Caceres had a scramble in front of goal, but was not lucky enough to finish it off. Even Zac Anderson, who consistently underwhelms me, mustered up the energy to go for a run up the field from centre-back.

Late chances were created by Caceres and Fitzgerald, but, a man down and two-goals in arrears, the Mariners weren’t able to secure a goal at all.

Special mentions must be made for goal man Liam Reddy who quite literally risked everything, (leaving the goal entirely unmanned) to assist in a Mariners penalty, only to have to frantically run back down the pitch. He did stop a third goal, though.

Despite some brave defending, this marks the Mariners third loss at home, which will undoubtedly be a hard pill to swallow for Moss and the boys.

“I know there’s a bunch of boys in there that are hurting… it’s been a hard slog over the past two weeks,” Moss said.

Next week the Mariners face #F3Derby rivals Newcastle Jets away, who will undoubtedly be looking for pay-back after losing to the Mariners in the first game of the season.

“I can guarantee you that there will be fireworks next weekend,” Moss said.



Central Coast Mariners starting XI: 2. Storm Roux 3. Joshua Rose 5. Zac Anderson 7. John Hutchinson (C) 8. Nick Montgomery 9.Mitchell Duke 10. Anthony Caceres 11. Nick Fitzgerald 12. Liam Reddy (GK) 15. Matthew Sim 21. Michael Neill

Central Coast Mariners substitutions: 1. Matthew Nash (GK) 17. Richard Vernes 18. Glen Trifiro 23. Isaka Cernak 25. Eddy Bosnar


Adelaide United starting XI: 1.Eugene Galekovic (GK) 2. Michael Marrone 3. Nigel Boogaard 5. Osama Malick 7. Pablo Sanchez 8. Isaias 9. Sergio Cirio 16. Craig Goodwin 18. James Jeggo 21. Tarek Elrich 22. Fabio Ferreira

Adelaide United substitutions: 4. Dylan McGowan 14.Cameron Watson 17. Awer Mabil 24. Bruce Kamau 30. John Hall (GK)
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W-League: Lady Reds, WSW play out entertaining draw

Adelaide United and Western Sydney Wanderers have fought out an entertaining 2-2 draw in their Sunday afternoon W-League clash at Adelaide Shores Football Complex, with both teams enjoying time in the lead.

Keelin Winters converted two penalties for the Wanderers, while Adelaide youngsters Emily Condon and Alex Chidiac did the damage for the home side, in a carnival-like atmosphere in which pride was on the line.


The Wanderers and the Lady Reds are last and second-last on the W-League ladder respectively, but with the standard of football on display one could have been fooled into thinking a spot on the top of the ladder was up for grabs.

Condon got the home side of the board in the third minute of the encounter, as she pounced on the rebound of Lisa-Marie Woods’ shot from a corner, and the 16-year-old’s chip flew over keeper Trudy Burke and into the top of the net.

The early wound got the Wanderers going though, and after a number of shots that cruised wide of their target, they were rewarded with a penalty for a push in the box by Kristy Moore in the 25th minute. Winters converted the spot-kick with ease, as Adelaide keeper Melissa Barbieri dived the wrong way.

The game remained locked at one apiece at the interval, but on the resumption the Lady Reds came out with every intention of pushing their opponents back. The plan worked as they drove in a number of strikes, but then all came unravelled when they again fouled in the box.

Monique Iannalla was the accused on the second occasion, with a poorly-timed challenge as the Wanderers had a rare moment up forward. Once again Winters was able to bury the penalty, this time using the right post to give her side the lead in the 63rd minute.

After a flurry of changes from Adelaide boss Ross Aloisi, parity was again restored as teenager Chidiac capitalised on an error to cheekily back-heel the game’s fourth goal in the 72nd minute. Burke had gone to smother a tame effort from outside the area, but the ball somehow bounced out of her clutches, and Chidiac was able to take advantage.

With the game all squared up the Wanderers started to push again, but the muggy conditions got the better of both sides, and the tired legs meant a draw was all that could be achieved.

After the game, Chidiac said she was pleased with her effort, but was frustrated by her team’s inability to take all the points.

“It was great [to score]… but it’s disappointing to only draw,” Chidiac said.

“It was a great game to play in, but we just couldn’t come up with the win.

“I think we did well, and hopefully we can get a win next week,” she said.

In the other dugout, Wanderers’ coach Norm Boardman was happy with a point away from home, but thought his team deserved take two more back to Parramatta Stadium.

“I think both coaches are a little disappointed no one got the three points… both teams really worked hard,” Boardman said.

“Our girls were out on their feet, but at the end [Adelaide] worked a little bit harder,” he said.

Adelaide will play its final game of the season away from home against Newcastle Jets on Saturday, while the Wanderers will host Brisbane next Sunday to end its 2014 campaign.



Adelaide United starting XI: 1. Melissa Barbieri (GK), 2. Monique Iannella, 3. Danielle Brogan, 6. Dylan Holmes (82’ off), 7. Katrina Pedersen, 8. Emily Condon (62’ off), 9. Lisa-Marie Woods, 12. Daila-Tais Borg, 14. Rachel Alonso (59 off’), 15. Jenna McCormick, 23. Kristy Moore (C)

Adelaide United substitutes: 10. Alexandra Chidiac (59’ on), 11. Isabel Hodgson (62’ on), 16. Katie Holtham (82’ on), 20. Sarah Willacy (GK)


Western Sydney Wanderers starting XI: 1. Trudy Burke (GK), 2. Caitlin Cooper (C), 3. Jessica Seaman, 4. Caitlin Jarvie (85’ off), 5. Helen Petinos, 6. Rachael Soutar, 8. Grace Henry, 9. Keelin Winters, 10. Michelle Carney (90’ off), 12. Hannah Beard (77’ off), 16. Linda O’Neill

Western Sydney Wanderers substitutes: 14. Demi Koulizakis (77’ on), 17. Laura Donnelly (90’ on), 19. Chloe O’Brien (85 on’), 30. Jessica Urquhart (GK)
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Sydney suffocates City with dominate win

Sydney FC has claimed a much-deserved 2-0 win over Melbourne City at AAMI Park to maintain its unbeaten start to the season.

Austrian international Marc Janko bagged a brace in the match where Sydney dominated from start to finish.


City were second best all night in front of their home fans, not for the first time this season.

Sydney dominated the first half and right from the onset showed their intent to chase the game.

All the possession took place in City’s defence half with Sydney looking threatening on each push forward.

They took a much deserved lead in the tenth minute when Janko was on hand to head home an inch-perfect Bernie Ibini post.

Even in these early moments of the game Ibini looked likely to hurt City with his sheer pace. He got into space in the right to send a ball straight on top of Janko’s head who had little to do to place the ball in the net.

City goalkeeper Andrew Redmayne was nowhere to be seen for the goal, stuck to his neat post when the middle of his goal was so isolated.

Even though it was a much deserved goal thanks to the good work of Ibini and Sydney’s dominace up to that point, Redmayne should have done better.

The Austrian International come ever so close to making it two in the 24th minute when he sent his header from a Pedj Bojic cross against the post.

After the opening barrage from Sydney, City did manage to get themselves into the game.

It looked as though they had a penalty just two minutes after conceding the opener when Damien Duff was clean on goal.

Duff broke the offside trap and was clean on goal with only Janjetovic to beat. Duff couldn’t get past the Sydney keeper and looked as though to be brought down but not was waved away. So convinced he was fouled in the box, Duff picked up the ball to place it on the penalty spot only to be called for a handball.

Janjetovic was in final touch in the first half, denying any threat City were able to conjure.

A diving save from a Mate Dugandzic header a particular highlight.

Sydney had two glorious opportunities to make it two close to the first half by Janko and Ali Abbas but both scuffed their line after becoming one-on-one with Redmayne.

Sydney put the cue in the rack in the second half, more than happy to sit on the one goal advantage.

City dominated the second half possession but couldn’t make it count.

Attack after attack went to nothing, due to Sydney’s defence being on top and City at times looking clueless.

The mountain of possession was wasted by City’s ineptitude up front.

Sydney made their profligacy in front of goal pay when Janko made it two in the 82nd minute.

Janko took advantage of a defensive mistake to stroll into the box to place the ball past a hopeless Redmayne

Eric Parrtalu did manage to bag a consolation goal from a corner before a frantic finish ensued.

Milos Dimijetrovic was given his marching orders just shy of the 90 to leave Sydney with 10 men and City the chance to grab a memorable point.

Just like the entire half, City had all the ball in the five minutes of added time but just couldn't find a way through Sydney’s defence, handing them all the points.

Not to take away from a fine Sydney performance, City were poor, again.

The main problem for City is that nothing has changed, and more alarmingly it doesn't look like changing anytime soon

Same problems up front and same problems in defence.

Something has to give, and fast.



Melbourne City: 1. Andrew REDMAYNE (GK), 3. Rob WIELAERT, 5. Erik PAARTALU, 28. Liam MILLER (25. Jacob MELLING 46’), 7. Iain RAMSAY, 6. Aaron MOOY, 11. Damien DUFF, 15. David WILLIAMS (14. James BROWN 66’), 23. Mate DUGANDZIC (26. Marc MARINO 77’), 24. Patrick KISNORBO (c), 17. Jason HOFFMAN

Unused substitutes: 20. Tando VELAPHI (GK), 27. Ross ARCHIBALD


Sydney FC: 20. Vedran JANJETOVIC (GK), 2. Seb RYALL, 4. Pedj BOJIC, 6. Nikola PETKOVIC, 8. Milos DIMITRIJEVIC, 21. Marc JANKO (9. Shane SMELTZ 90′), 11. Bernie IBINI-ISEI, 16. Alex GERSBACH, 17. Terry ANTONIS, 14. Alex BROSQUE (c), 22. Ali ABBAS (23. Rhyan GRANT 69’)

Unused substitutes: 1. Ivan NECEVSKI (GK), 13. Chris NAUMOFF, 25. Aaron CALVER
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W-League: Red-hot Victory shoots down Jets

Melbourne Victory has cemented its place in the W-League finals series with a resounding 4-0 win over Newcastle Jets at Kingston Heath Reserve on Saturday afternoon.

It was a ‘win and in’ situation for Victory who played their last regular season match before heading off to Japan to compete in the Women’s Club World Cup next week.


After going through a run of four games without a win, it looked as though the defending champions would not qualify for the finals and defend their title.

A Racheal Quigley proved too hot to handle in the scorching heat for the Jets, netting a well-deserved hat-trick.

It was a match Victory dominated from start to finish, never really being pressured by the traveling Jets.

An early scare ripped through the side early when start player Lisa De Vanna went down grabbing her ankle. The match came to stop as she received treatment but was able to retake her place on the field

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The breakthrough came for Victory in the 23rd minute when Quigley was on hand to tap home after a deflected De Vanna shot fell invitingly to her.

Gema Simon was forced off the field in the 25th minute which brought Beatie Goad into the action.

The youngster wasted no time making a statement in the game as she scored in just her sixth minite of the field.

A piercing run down the wing by De Vanna allowed Goad to get on the ball and put away Victory’s second.

Victory dominated the remainder of the half with the Jets unable to make any meaningful attacks on goal.

Victory’s third came just moments into the second half when Quigly made it two for the day for her with De Vanna once again providing the assist.

Just like the hosts, the Jets themselves were desperate for a win to keep its finals chance alive but didn’t display the desperation like the Victory did.

With the result all but wrapped up, Victory took the foot off the gas with an eye on Japan.

It mattered little anyway with Jets unable to get near the Victory goal.

Quigley grabbed her hat-trick with 20 minutes to play, taking advantage of a tired Jets defence who appeared to be felling the full effects of a hot Melbourne afternoon.

Victory manager Joe Montemurro has pleased his side will be in the final series.

"I think we can go all way," Montemurro said.

"As I said I'm proud of the way the players have comported themselves and the way they have gone about things. It's been fantastic.

"We set ourselves the target to get into the finals and as I've said all along, it's one game at a time, one situation and one team at a time and I think we just gained some nice momentum so it's good."

Victory will depart for Japan on Thursday as the Australian participant in the International Womens Club Championship on Thursday and will take on local outfit Okayama Yunogo Belle on November 30.



Melbourne Victory: 1. Brianna DAVEY (GK), 2. Hannah BREWER, 5. Lauren BARNES, 6. Gema SIMON (16. Beattie GOAD 25'), 7. Stephanie CATLEY (C), 9. Racheal QUIGLEY (29. Caitlin FRIEND 72'), 10. Christine NAIRN, 11. Lisa DE VANNA (17. Gulcan KOCA 63'), 12. Ella MASTRANTONIO, 15. Emma CHECKER, 18. Elli REED

Unused substitutes: 20. Cassandra DIMOVSKI (GK)


Newcastle Jets: 1. Hannah SOUTHWELL (GK), 2. Georgia YEOMAN-DALE, 3. Hayley CRAWFORD (24. Brooke MILLER 67'), 5. Katherine REYNOLDS, 6. Angela SALEM, 7. Victoria HUSTER, 8. Amber NEILSON (17. Grace MACINTYRE 84'), 9. Tara ANDREWS, 10. Emily VAN EGMOND (C), 11. Rhali DOBSON (18. Claire WHEELER 86'), 16. Cassidy DAVIS

Unused substitutes: 20. Claire COELHO (GK)
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Wanderers held to 1-1 stalemate

The Western Sydney Wanderers put out what was considered to be one of their strongest line-ups yet this season, yet it did not give them the ability to score more than one goal to secure the win, rather playing out a 1-1 draw with Newcastle Jets.

The Wanderers began the game with an explosive start with this season’s signing Nikita Rukavytsya sprinting down the wing until he was called offside.


Wanderer Vitor Saba similarly entered the field with a fiery passion, trying to bounce the ball into the goal but it simply just bounced onto the top of the net.

Newcastle’s Edson Montano sprinted past the Wanderers defence, particularly Shannon Cole, who in a last minute attempt stretched his leg to stop the ball but almost ended us in the splitz. Thankfully for him, Montano sent the ball straight on top of the net.

A spectacular corner by Saba sends the ball straight to Tomi Juric who volleyed the ball straight into the back of the net. This led to the Wanderers taking the lead 1 – 0 in the 12th minute.

Romeo Castelen then passed the ball to Rukavysta who was then unable to attribute to the goals scored whilst moments later there were calls for handball by the Newcastle with the crowd erupting with profanities.

The Wanderers lead was ended in the 27th minute, with David Carney passing the ball to Marcos Flores who send the ball with his right foot into the centre of the box straight past Wanderers keeper Ante Covic.

Following this Rukavystya goes for a fantastic run and pushes past the defence and sends the ball straight to the keeper, this was followed by Shannon Cole taking a free kick for the Wanderers except he over curved the ball.

Jeronimo followed a similar attacking path by curving the ball towards the goal, but this was sent straight into the arms of Ante Covic.

The second half saw the first change of the game with Hamill coming on and Alessi coming off.

Rukavytsya started the second half off in a similar manner going for a brilliant run but passing the ball into enemy territory.

Castelen similarly went for a run but sent the ball high and wide away from goal which consequentially saw him coming off and being replaced by Bridge.

The Wanderers almost took the lead by an assist from Juric to Rukavysta who shot the ball straight over the top post. This followed with Newcastle taking off Jeronimo and bringing on Hoole.

David Carney was gradually becoming a threat to the Wanderers sending a perfect cross to the middle of the play, but the rest of his team mates were unable to interput the shot.

Juric then made another spectacular run only to try to pass the ball to Rukavystya who was a few steps behind with another opportunity squanderered for the Wanderers.

Substitutions continued with Celeski coming off and Pepper coming on, Rukavystsya being replaced by Haliti coming on.

A yellow card was given to Madaschi, which followed with the final with the shot in the game with Haliti almost securing a win for the Wanderers with a shot that was sadly deflected for the Red & Black away from goal.

The score settled at 1-1 with the Wanderers' next challenge being the Sydney Derby next Saturday evening.


Western Sydney Wanderers starting XI: Nikolai TOPOR-STANLEY, Shannon COLE, Mateo POLJAK, Tomi JURIC, Vitor SABA, Nikita RUKAVYTYSA, Matthew SPIRANOVIC, Romeo CASTELEN, Iacopo LA ROCCA, Daniel ALESSI and Ante COVIC (GK).

Western Sydney Wanderers substitutes: Brendan HAMILL, Labinot HALITI, Mark BRIDGE, Kearyn BACCUS and Dean BOUZANIS (GK).


Newcastle Jets starting XI: Kew Raffique JALIENS (C), Adrian MADASCHI, JERONIMO, Marcos FLORES, Edson MONTAO, Billy CELESKI, Allan WELSH, Samuel GALLAWAY, David CARNEY, Nicholas COWBURN and Ben Kennedy (GK).

Newcastle Jets substitutes: Zenon CARAVELLA, Joel GRIFFITHS, Andrew HOOLE, Jacob PEPPER and Mark BIRIGHITTI (GK).
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Own goal hands Victory win over Brisbane

Melbourne Victory has kept its unbeaten start to the year intact with a dour 1-0 win Brisbane Roar at Etihad Stadium on Friday night.

In a match the never really hit any heights, it was an own goal by Roar defender Jade North that proved the difference.


Chances were at a premium all night, so much to the point it seemed that each team’s final third decided to have a night off.

Pre-match the talk surrounded one man – Besart Berisha.

This was billed as the fiery contest between the Albanian forward and his former employee that promised to deliver fireworks and goals from the big man.

Not quite.

While still having a massive presence on the game, Berisha’s impact was minimal but to be fair to the man he wasn’t alone in that department.

Both sides struggled to get into the match at all. This game had all the makings of a nil-all draw if not for North’s misdemeanour in front of his team’s goal.

The first 10 minutes of the half was a demonstration in errant passing by both sides.

With the Ange Postecoglou mantra of ‘pass, pass then pass some more’ still prevalent in Victory and Roar from the Socceroos former time in charge of both clubs, the two teams tried to show the other who is top dog is the passing game.

Neither are, so it would seem.

The first real chance of any meaning in the game came in the 15th minute when Archie Thompson headed wide a perfectly delivered cross by Mark Milligan.

Berisha entered the game in the 22nd minute when he was denied a goal against his former side thanks to a great save by Jaime Young with his legs.

The half ended in deep concern for the Victory when Milligan went down after a challenge with

The second half has much like the first; more physical than beautiful.

The heavy tackles were flying in by both sides. The constant fouling by both sides didn’t at all help with the flow of the match either with the stop and starts ruling out any real chance of a contest.

It appeared as though Victory had found the breakthrough just shy of the hour mark when the ball found the net from a rehearsed free kick move.

Gui Finkler played a ball on the ground to Milligan who in turn sent a cross close too Young in goal who collected the ball but was bundled over the goal line.

Confusion reigned shortly after whether the referee and called for a foul on Young or if a Victory player was deemed offside, the latter proving to be the case.

With the match drawing to an inevitable draw, Victory were handed a gift of an own goal turned into three points.

A Berisha header from a Fahid Ben Khalfallah looked like it was going wide until North took an unfortunate touch guiding the past Young.

The Roar gave very little in the remaining 15 minutes as the search for an equaliser never materialised.

It was the Victory who looked more likely to score and should have in the death when Ben Khalfallah made the mess of a one-on-one chance with Young after a swift counter attack.

Victory manger Kevin Muscat spoke post-game the frustration with the games flow.

"There was no momentum in the game, no-one was allowed to create any momentum," he said.

"During the first half the stoppages to take free-kicks were excruciatingly long. I almost got bored at times. In the second half, when a team scores a goal, all of a sudden you have to hurry up.

"I'm going to have get that clarified. Because at 0-0 apparently you can take as long as you like on free-kicks and slow the game down. We'll have to look at it.

"I don't know if they were time-wasting but it seemed like a long time to me, you must have felt the same."

This was a text book ugly win by the Victory. No flash and no nonsense. It was a win they needed to have to further enhance their championship winning credentials.

Winning easily is one thing, but to win when you’re not at your best and your opposition is hell bent on nothing more than getting a draw is another.

 It wasn’t a pretty when, but they will take it.



Melbourne Victory starting XI: 1. Nathan COE, 5. Mark MILLIGAN, 6. Leigh BROXHAM, 7. Gui FINKLER, 8. Besart BERISHA, 10. Archie THOMPSON, 14 Fahid BEN KHALFALLAH, 15. George GEORGIEVSKI, 21. Carl VALERI, 23. Adrian LEIJER, 24. Scott GALLOWAY

Melbourne Victory substitutes: 20. Lawrence THOMAS, 9. Kosta BARBAROUSES, 11. Connor PAIN, 16. Rashid MAHAZI, 22. Jesse MAKAROUNAS


Brisbane Roar starting XI: 21. Jamie YOUNG, 2. Matt SMITH, 3. Shane STEFANUTTO, 10. HENRIQUE, 13. Jade NORTH, 14. Daniel BOWLES, 17. Matt McKAY, 18. Luke BRATTAN, 22. Thomas BROICH, 23, Dimi PETRATOS, 28, Brandon BORRELLO
Brisbane Roar substitutes: 30. Matt ACTON, 6. George LAMBADARDIS, 8. Steve LUSTICA, 15. James DONACHIE, 34. Shannon BRADY
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Lowe stays grounded as Glory’s purple patch continues

Perth Glory boss Kenny Lowe has played down suggestions that his players might feel pressure from leading the A-League following their 2-1 win over the Wellington Phoenix on Friday night.

It was Glory’s sixth success from seven games, their best start to a Hyundai A-League campaign, but Lowe won’t be paying any attention to the ladder until much later on in the season.


“I don’t think there’s any pressure [from being in first place], we just go about our business,” he said afterwards.

“We’re not interested in league tables, especially after [seven] games. I might be interested after 27.”

Teenage sensation Daniel De Silva gave the majority of the 9233 spectators something to celebrate early on with a goal inside 90 seconds following some great work on the right by Youssouf Hersi.

Irish international Andy Keogh notched his fifth league goal on the hour mark before Roy Krishna pulled one back for the visitors from the penalty spot with five minutes remaining.

Following Keogh’s goal, Ruben Zadkovich replaced Rostyn Griffiths but just 17 seconds later he was sent off by referee Lucien Laverdure for a challenge on Vince Lia.

Replays showed that Zadkovich went over the top of the ball and connected with Lia, and while it initially looked like Laverdure was only going to produce a yellow card, he pulled out the red after consulting his assistant.

“I’m 45/50 metres away so I’ll say it was definitely not a red, as any coach would,” said Lowe of the incident with a laugh.

“I don’t know, I haven’t a clue. Ruben doesn’t go in with a feather duster, when he goes in he goes in.

“I think he took some of the ball, maybe he took some of the guy, I don’t know. I’ll have to have a look.”

When asked if there would any possibility of the red card being overturned by FFA, Lowe joked that there was more chance of six inches of snow next week.

Lowe also said that he was pleased with how his side controlled the game, even with the numerical disadvantage, and was “not one little bit” nervous in a frantic ending made longer by five minutes of injury time.

“It was never in doubt with the character they’ve got really, it just emphasised the type of people that they are,” he said.

De Silva’s goal was his first in the A-League having notched one in the FFA Cup quarter final win over Melbourne Victory last month, and Lowe is satisfied with the AS Roma-bound youngster’s efforts as a first team regular.

“He’s done alright, runs out of petrol a little bit but he’s only 12 so that’s probably why,” he said.

Just like last weekend’s contest with the Western Sydney Wanderers, Glory created enough chances to put the game out of sight as Nebojsa Marinkovic forced a stunning one handed save out of Glen Moss and struck an upright from long range.

Josh Risdon was again superb at right back, and it was from his right wing cross that Keogh ended a run of four games without a goal.

For their part, the Phoenix created little aside from the penalty as Roly Bonevacia, Nathan Burns and Krishna all failed to find the target with efforts on goal.

Coach Ernie Merrick admitted that his side were second best on the night, but he was still disappointed not to take something from the game having lost late on against Adelaide United in the previous round.

“It took a while to find our grove and the passing was poor but that’s what happens when you concede a goal within two minutes and you’re on the back foot,” said the Scot.

Michael McGlinchey’s absence due to the birth of his daughter was a massive blow to the Kiwis in the build up to the game and they have now won just once in their last eight road trips.

The Phoenix must now pick themselves up for the visit of Melbourne City next weekend, while Glory head to Brisbane to take on the Roar.



Perth Glory starting XI: 1. Daniel VUKOVIC, 5. Rostyn GRIFFITHS, 6. Dino DJULBIC, 7. Youssouf HERSI, 9. Andrew KEOGH, 10. Nebojsa MARINKOVIC, 11. Richard GARCIA, 19. Joshua RISDON, 20. Daniel DE SILVA, 21. Scott JAMIESON, 23. Rostyn GRIFFITHS.

Perth Glory substitutes: 8. Ruben ZADKOVICH, 13. Diogo FERREIRA, 14. Chris HAROLD, 17. Mitchell NICHOLS, 18. Jack DUNCAN.


Wellington Phoenix starting XI: 1. Glen MOSS, 2. Emmanuel MUSCAT, 4. Rolieny BONEVACIA, 9. Nathan BURNS, 11. Jeremy BROCKIE, 13. Albert RIERA, 17. Vince LIA, 18. Benjamin SIGMUND, 19. Thomas DOYLE, 21. Roy KRISHNA, 22. Andrew DURANTE.

Wellington Phoenix substitutes: 5. Michael BOXALL, 7. Kenny CUNNINGHAM, 8. Alex RODRIGUEZ, 12. Tyler BOYD, 20. Lewis ITALIANO.
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W-League: Glory women setting the pace in WA

Perth Glory’s success in the Westfield W-League this season has provided a huge boost to not only the women’s game but to all levels of football in Western Australia.

The women’s team claimed the W-League premiership last weekend to secure the Glory franchise’s first piece of silverware in a decade, dating back to when coach Jamie Harnwell was at the height of his playing career in the now-defunct National Soccer League.


As it stands, all three Perth Glory teams – men, women and youth – are top of their respective leagues and the game is finally gaining some much-needed momentum in WA after a number of years being left in the wake of the success of other sporting codes.

How football is now viewed by the local sporting community contrasts starkly with the last few years of the NSL when Glory was the one and only powerhouse in Australian football, both on and off the field.

The men’s team was making grand finals and winning championships in the early 2000s, but it was the bumper crowds which packed into Perth Oval (now nib Stadium) to watch the likes of Harnwell and Bobby Despotovski strut their stuff that showed the rest of the country how successful the game could be in Australia.

A whopping 43,242 people – a then-record crowd for a domestic football match in Australia – packed into Subiaco Oval in June 2000 to watch Perth’s heartbreaking grand final loss to Wollongong.

But when the NSL folded after Glory’s second title in 2004 and the A-League formed less than two years later, Perth was seemingly left behind and aside from a grand final appearance by the men’s team in 2011-12, local football fans have had very little to get excited about and crowd figures are a fraction of what they used to be.

However, the Glory women have finally given success-starved local football supporters something to cheer about by conquering all before them in one of the most dominant seasons in recent memory – and it’s still not over.

Harnwell’s side has two regular season matches to play before they host a semi-final at nib Stadium on December 13 or 14 and potentially a grand final the following weekend.

The Glory girls’ success comes less than two years ago after ruthless Perth Glory owner Tony Sage cut all funding for the women’s team as the side languished near the bottom of the W-League.

Now the ladies in purple have set a pace for their male counterparts to follow.

The significance of what the women’s team has achieved this season is certainly not lost on Harnwell, who also works as a development officer for local sporting body Football West, which now oversees the women’s programme.

“The whole season has really been a huge boost for women’s and girls’ football in this state,” Harnwell said.

“These girls have taken the league by storm and really opened up people’s eyes to women’s football, in particular, and it’s only going to be of benefit to us in future years when we get more and more girls playing and aspiring to be Perth Glory women players.”

Harnwell, who played a record 256 games for Perth Glory in the NSL and A-League and is one of WA’s most respected football identities, hoped the success of the women’s side would rub off on both the men’s and youth teams.

“It’s been a great start to the season for the men and for the youth league as well, but I don’t think they’re under any illusion about to how difficult their task is to stay on top of the table,” Harnwell said.

“It’s a nice thing for all three teams to be doing well right now, but it’s more important for all three teams to be doing well at the business end of the season when it comes around to the big games in finals.”

If Harnwell’s all-conquering women’s team can add the W-League championship to the club’s newly reopened trophy cabinet next month, it will provide yet another huge – and timely – boost to the game in WA.

And then, perhaps most importantly, Perth football fans can start thinking about a possible return to the “glory days” of football in the west.
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W-League: Glory subs in line for more game time

Perth Glory coach Jamie Harnwell will weigh up whether to give some of his bench players more game time in the final two regular season matches before the Westfield W-League finals.

Harnwell has used the same starting XI for the past fortnight and is unlikely to make any changes to his preferred line-up for the club’s home semi-final next month unless a player is unavailable due to injury or suspension.


But the coach hinted he may give the likes of Carys Hawkins, Gabe Marzano and Elisa D’Ovidio more time on the pitch in Glory’s final two games against Sydney FC and Canberra so they are ready to fill a void if one of their teammates is ruled out.

“We need to maintain momentum and we want to keep winning games because it’s a good habit to be in and not something we want to break,” Harnwell said.

“But we’ve got to be mindful there are some players who haven’t played a huge amount of football this season, but may be called upon in either the semi-final or the grand final if we get there.

“That being said, you’ve got to stay true to players who have done the job week in, week out so we’ll sit down and see how everyone’s travelling physically, what situations are with yellow cards and things like that, and put together a plan so we’re hopefully peaking at the right time in the semi-final.”

Glory claimed the W-League premiership before last Saturday’s 5-0 win over Western Sydney when Canberra United failed to claim maximum points against the Newcastle Jets earlier in the day.

It was the first time a Perth Glory outfit has secured a piece of silverware since Harnwell tasted victory as a player with the men’s side in the final season of the now-defunct National Soccer League.

Harnwell gave all of his players three days off training following their historic premiership win and he hopes the short respite will give his team an edge in the finals.

"It’s been pretty full on for them because they’re all studying, working or doing other things as well,” Harnwell said, adding the rest was predetermined given Glory has a bye this weekend.

“It’s not just about the football so it’s important they get a bit of time off for their own sake and then they can come back refreshed and re-energised.”

A proud Harnwell, who has coached the women’s team for the past four seasons, said his all-conquering side deserved everything that came their way following a record-breaking season in which Glory has lost just one game to date.

Harnwell was initially not going to pose for a photo with the happy team as they celebrated with a commemorative premiership shield at the end of last Saturday’s game until he was reluctantly coaxed in the victory shot by a couple of the players.

“The players deserve it, they’re the ones who go out on the park and work hard and put the effort in,” Harnwell said.

“What we do as coaches, at times, has pretty minimal effect and I’ve had my time in the sun as a player and the group we’ve got at the moment and deserve every accolade that they get.”

Harnwell has the rare honour of being involved in all of the major triumphs at Perth Glory, including two NSL championships as a player with the men’s team in 2002-03 and 2003-04, and could add another title to his individual resume next month if his side can win the W-League grand final for the first time.

“To have had success a player and then as a coach of the women’s team of the same club is a nice feeling, but it will be even better if we can add a championship to that as well,” he said.

“I’m not sure there will be too many people who have both coached and played in championships at a national level, but we won’t get ahead of ourselves because there’s a lot of work to do before we can worry about that.”
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Cirio the man at Coopers Stadium

When Adelaide United boss Josep Gombau was coaching Kichee in the Hong Kong Premier League, there was one player he always wanted to bring over from Europe; one small, nimble winger who has pace to burn and provides energy to a whole squad, but Gombau could never make it happen.

That is until the tiki-taka tactician came to Adelaide and within two months, his transfer target had put ink on the dotted line.

Sergio Cirio. Image provided by Adelaide United.
That man is Sergio Cirio, who has taken Coopers Stadium and the A-League by storm in his second season. The 29-year-old has become one of the most dangerous assassins in the competitions and is fast becoming the key to Adelaide’s early success in 2014.

Speaking exclusively to The Football Sack, the Spaniard says that his own good form, which includes eight goals in 10 league and cup games, is down to the positive mood and good form of the entire Adelaide camp.

“I think all the team is playing very well, defending well and attacking well,” Cirio said.

“We start to know each other… and this means I am scoring more goals, because the team is playing better."

Another part of the Cirio success story is his adaptability. Like many Australian clubs, depth up front is a problem for Adelaide United, and with their first options in Bruce Djite and Pablo Sanchez spending a good deal of time with the medics, it’s been Cirio that has moved into the number 11 spot.

This isn’t a just a role he is comfortable with, it’s a role he actually prefers, but just being on the pitch is good enough for the goal-sneak the Red Army has fallen in love with.

“I prefer to play like a number 11, rather than a winger, because I have the ability to go inside with my right foot,” he said.

“But I play with my team mates, Marcelo [Carrusca], Isaias, Pablo [Sanchez], Jimmy [Jeggo] and Bruce [Djite]… so I can play 11, or seven, nine or 10.

“What I like most is to play though, so I don’t care about the position."

Cirio – who was born in Barcelona – is part of a pageant of Spaniards at Coopers Stadium who fill roles in the dugout, in the backroom and on the pitch.

This mix didn’t work wonders last year, but the Catalonians have gelled this year more than most would have dared to dream, and now find themselves undefeated in the league and hosting the FFA Cup final in December.

Cirio says that this is because the attacking mentality of the Spaniards is now settled amongst the rest of the Adelaide squad, and each part of the side is pulling in the same direction.

“I think we are better this because now we have different formations to play, and we have been playing together for one year,” he said.

“We know our movements, we know better what we have to do in defending actions; we know better what we have to do in attacking actions.

“We have the same mentality to play football… and the Spanish players and the Australian players know very well what we have to do.”

With six games gone and not a defeat to speak of, it’s hard to argue with the pacey 29-year-old, but as he says himself, the year is still young so anything can happen.

At the moment, only good things are happening and as long as Cirio keeps confusing his markers like he has over the last few months, it’s hard to see anything changing.
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