Spirit FC’s hold on the PS4 NPL NSW Men’s 2 title continued with a 3-1 win over Mount Druitt Town Rangers, their six point lead over Central Coast maintained following the Coast’s 3-1 victory at home to Macarthur Rams.
Hakoah Sydney City East, as well as the Coast, have helped keep the challenge honest after moving to third following their 1-0 defeat of Northern Tigers at Mills Park.
Fraser Park v Mounties Wanderers
There were chances galore at Fraser Park, with enough opportunities for either side to win three games but both the home team and the visiting Mounties Wanderers had to settle for a point apiece as this enthralling game finished 1-1.
With the match starting in blustery conditions, the wind travelling straight down the pitch towards the railway end, it was somewhat difficult for both sides at the start. As the early stages progressed though, it Mounties who began to settle the better. None were more influential was Neftali Gonzalez, who along with Jacob Carluccio was commanding in the midfield. It was through the pair that the Mounties looked to create the chances, and the first came via the industrious work of the duo, but Gongjun Lee, who was the recipient of their work, shot too weakly to trouble Wayne Estavao.
There was clear desire by Mounties, who came to Fraser Park with only victory on their minds. Equal bottom with Sydney University, and with club championship points on the line, there was no chance that a draw was going to suffice. Reid Taylor and Jake Ingle, up front and wide, were making nuisances of themselves with their pace. In fact, Taylor really should have put Mounties up after eighteen minutes, a Mark d’Alessandro through ball falling into the path of Taylor, who then shot wide, with only Estavao to beat.
A narrow escape for Fraser Park, who took until the half hour mark to have a shot of their own. It was through Hussein Akil that their first chance came, the attacking midfielder doing well in taking on the defence, neatly bypassing a number of Mounties defenders, before striking over. No real trouble for Ali Akbal, but maybe a sign that Fraser Park were getting themselves into the game.
Four minutes later, and Nikola Todoroski drew a good save from Akbal, the game now toing and froing. Taylor tested Estavao again, down the other end, before with three minutes of the half remaining, Fraser Park struck the lead. As Mounties cleared, the ball rebounded off referee Jerry Bitas, and won again by Fraser Park. Stefan Jovanovic did well, speeding past the defence to strike a sweeping curler away from Akbal.
A well taken goal and a good lead for Fraser Park, who, fifth before the weekend, had seen themselves drop to seventh after Saturday’s results. If Mounties needed the win for their own reasons, so did Fraser Park for their own ambitions.
That lead was almost doubled right on half time, after Nikola Todoroski was fouled by James Letta just outside the box. Akil again, with a direct freekick, was inches wide of the upright.
But a welcoming lead for Fraser though it was, that lead lasted merely moments after the restart. It took only thirty six seconds after the re-commencement for Mounties to draw level.
Ingle received the ball, as good as unmarked on the edge of the area, and turning nicely, shot low across Estavao. A crucial lapse in concentration for Fraser Park, who now had to do it all again.
They certainly tried, but so did Mounties. Neither were going to be satisfied with just a point and the chances flowed thick and fast. Lee for Mounties sliced wide with a good chance, and Akil once more looked certain to score. Skirting past Akbal, the leading scorer was pushed wide and the angle became too much, the shot just passing the upright, yet again.
Ten minutes later, and Akil came even closer. Two chances inside a minute. The first rolled against the post, but Fraser collected. A cross from the right fell back to Akil, who took one touch too many, allowing a desperate Mounties to tackle.
Gonzalez and Taylor then combined to give Lee another pop for Mounties, not taken, while Jovanovic flashed a cross across the face of goal for Fraser, eluding everybody.
Lee then was wide again, but it fell to Taylor ten minutes before full time, who should have sealed it for Mounties. A bit too casual perhaps, and Estavao pulled off a point-saving save.
Taylor still had time to hit the post a couple of minutes after that, but that second goal was just not coming.
A draw, shared points, neither side too happy with that, but certainly an open and rewarding game for the spectators.
Fraser Park 1 (Stefan Jovanovic 42’) v Mounties Wanderers 1 (Jake Ingle 46’)
Sunday 26 July 2015
at Fraser Park
Referee: Jerry Bitas
Assts: Alex Goodhew and Jack Bell
Fraser Park: 1. Wayne Estavao 3. Davide Talone 4. Alex Veljanovski (20. Kim Daisan 72’) 5. Nick Dimitropoulos 7. Kevin Oliviera 8. Hussein Akil 11. Stefan Jovanovic 13. Pat Cappuccio 15. Rocci Gabey (16. Marko Micevski 77’) 17. Nikola Todoroski 18. Aleksandar Todoroski.
Subs not used: 22. Riley Keayes 10. Paulo Oliviera
Yellow Cards: Davide Talone 26’, Pat Cappuccio 51’, Rocci Gabey 59’
Coach: Mile Todoroski
Mounties Wanderers: 1. Ali Akbal 3. Neftali Gonzalez 6. Aleksandar Tomic 15. Shane Webb 18. Mark D’Alessandro 20. Reid Taylor 26. Jacob Carluccio 27. Gongjun Lee 28. Leon Faria (23. Nathan Attard 63’) 29. Jake Ingle (24. Mitchell King 79’) 32. James Letta
Subs not used: 30. James Stojcevski 8. Rory McGeown 11. Daine Merrin
Yellow Cards: James Letta 44’
Coach: Louis Contigiani
Sydney University v Bankstown Berries
It took a late goal in time added on for Bankstown Berries to claim a narrow 2-1 victory over Sydney University, as they maintained their finals push. A free kick from just outside the box resulted in Matthew Trotter striking low beyond the wall to secure the win, and consigning Uni to their third consecutive loss.
Uni were without the injured Tayfun Buyukkopru and Marton Vass, as well as the suspended Adrian Porcu, while the Berries welcomed back Liam McKenna from suspension. Nicholas Paras though, the Berries leading goalscorer, made his return to action in the Under 20s.
The better chances of the first half fell to the Berries, Ilkay Gurbuz drawing two excellent saves from Marko Bozic, the second right before half time but Uni responded well in the second period, Nathan Sansom coming close, only being denied by a finger tipped save from Michael Frost.
Just after the hour, Joel Anscomb hit the side netting, but it was Uni who were to put themselves in front minutes later. After coming close with two earlier headers, Gyubeom Kim finally headed home after a cross from Khushaba Khushaba, giving the home side the lead after sixty eight minutes.
That lead lasted just four minutes, Jake Bradshaw bringing the Berries level after evading Bozic. Bradshaw almost had a second three minutes from time, but this time the Uni keeper was equal to the task.
It looked like finishing all square, until up stepped Trotter.
Berries coach, Wally Savor, felt that his team had perhaps been a little flat overall, but finished strongly.
“I sent on a fresh striker with fifteen minutes to go [Tommy Taylor for Ilkay Gurbuz] and I think that made the difference for us, although I thought overall we could have played better”.
“I think it worked out well for both clubs tonight”, continued Savor. “We got the win in first grade to keep us in the hunt for the finals and twelve points for the Club Championships, and they got nine points from the early games to help them with their relegation issues”.
Uni may have other thoughts, as they were definitely seeking three wins, and none were more devastated that Bozic at the end. The final month looks likely to be a tense one indeed.
Sydney University 1 (Gyubeom Kim 68’) v Bankstown Berries 2 (Jake Bradshaw 72’, Matthew Trotter 91’)
Sydney University: 1. Marko Bozic 3. Nathan Sansom 4. Gyubeom Kim 8. Khushaba Khushaba 10. Santiago Rodriguez (24. Jacob Blundell) 13. Alexander Sopina 14. Daniel Mifsud 17. Stefan de Jesus 19. Matthew Fsadni 23. Nathan Preston 40. Peter Crevani.
Subs not used: 21. Patrick Ferrara 6. Dario Borovickic 34. Christopher Phillips
Yellow Cards: Santiago Rodriguez 19’, Matthew Fsadni 27’, Nathan Preston 34’, Peter Crevani 74’
Bankstown Berries: 1. Michael Frost 3. Liam McKenna 7. Kyle Ewart 10. Jun Kato 11. Joel Anscomb 12. Mitchell Davidson 16. Milan Zoric 17. Ilkay Gurbuz (8. Thomas Taylor) 18. Matthew Trotter 21. Peter Dimitropoulos (4. Omar Saadi) 22. Jake Bradshaw.
Subs not used: 41. Stefan Giglio 2. Andrew Vitucci 6. Shivan Swamy.
Yellow Cards: Milan Zoric 85’
Northern Tigers v Hakoah Sydney City East
Hakoah Sydney City East left Mills Park cock-a-hoop after a vital 1-0 win allowed them to leapfrog over Northern Tigers into third.
In a game of few chances, a lone goal by Paul Orgad in the 73rd minute did the damage for Hakoah. Orgad did best in getting onto the end of a Joseph Dingwall cross, before striking home past Matt Nemes.
A send off to Deklan Gilmartin, with twelve minutes left, had little bearing on proceedings.
Northern Tigers 0 v Hakoah Sydney City East 1 (Paul Orgad 73’)
Northern Tigers: 1. Matt Nemes 2. Samuel Ryder (5. Robin Freiberger) 3. Lucas Dawson 4. Michael Rolston 6. Paul Davies 7. Matthew West 9. Liam McConaghy (11. Mitchell Smith) 10. Shervin Adeli (14. Julian Lim) 12. Russell Farrell 16. Steven Baveas 18. Tai Smith.
Yellow Cards: Michael Rolston 27’, Liam McConaghy 29’
Hakoah Sydney City East: 1. Matthew Symes 2. Remy Wolanski 4. Bradley Walker 5. Michael McCrory (21. German Cabrera) 8. Paul Orgad 9. Neil Jablonski 10. Deklan Gilmartin 11. Gavin Rae 17. Joseph Dingwall 19. Jacob Esposito 44. Nicholas Mouzourakis (16. Brad Paikin).
Yellow Card: Deklan Gilmartin
Red Card: Deklan Gilmartin
Spirit FC v Mount Druitt Town Rangers
Spirit FC once again earned all three points with their thirteenth win of the season, keeping a tight hold at the top of the premiership race. A 3-1 win over Mount Druitt Town Rangers kept Spirit well ahead of the chasing pack, a lead which could be extended even more when they travel to St George on Wednesday night.
Goals to Ossama Zaki, Henry Wells and Brad Gibson were answered only by Elsid Barkhousir.
Spirit FC 3 (Ossama Zaki, Henry Wells, Brad Gibson) v Mount Druitt Town Rangers 1 (Elsid Barkhousir)
Central Coast v Macarthur Rams
Central Coast kept to within six points of the leaders Spirit FC with a 3-1 win over Macarthur Rams at Pluim Park, nineteen club championship points also adding gloss to the day.
Goals to Louis Bozanic, Trent Buhagiar and Steve Whyte helped seal the result against the Rams, whose sole reply was from Ben Cornish. The loss all but puts paid to Macarthur’s already slim finals hopes.
Central Coast 3 (Louis Bozanic, Trent Buhagiar, Steve Whyte) v Macarthur Rams 1 (Ben Cornish)
St George v Bankstown City
Early goals to Domenic Hudap and Chris Gomez set Bankstown City on the way to a 3-0 win against St George, the Lions keeping up the pressure on those clubs just above them in the ladder.
Hudap’s strike from outside the area drove high into the roof of the net, before Gomez doubled the lead midway through the first half. It was a sweet strike by Gomez, the shot curling past Aaron Liddell.
Hopes of a comeback for the Saints reduced considerably when Joseph d’Elia received a second yellow card on sixty six minutes for another bookable offence, the ten men of St George then conceding a third just minutes later, Gomez again finding the net.
St George 0 v Bankstown City 3 (Domenic Hudap 14’, Chris Gomez 24’, 69’)
St George: 1. Aaron Liddell 3. Emmanuel Elali (44. Thomas Menton) 5. Daniell Zeleny 7. Matt Sadler 8. Tarek Ercan 10. Michael Yarnold 11. Wassim Hijazi (45. Jacob Sullivan) 12. Tom Slater (19. Stevan Ilic) 14. Andrija Petkovic 15. Peter Pelekanos 16. Joseph d’Elia
Subs not used: 17. David Hamilton 6. Ali Nasreddine
Red Card: Joseph d’Elia 66’
Bankstown City: 1. Dion Shaw 3. Grant Lynch 4. Aaron D’Mello (12. Steven Veleski) 5. Michael Beauchamp 6. Reuben Lagos 8. Dean Heffernan 9. Chris Gomez (9. Gerard Ouffoue) 10. Domenic Hudap 11. Huseyin Jasli (77. Brandon Stojcevski) 20. Alvaro Malmierca 22. Ko Kimura
Subs not used: 30. Nicholas Carosi 2. Todd Halloran
Source FNSW website - by Peter Rowney, PS4 National Premier Leagues NSW Men's 2 Reporter
Additional reporting by Paul Green