Young Demons Down Tigers


The goal came from a stunning free kick off the boot of Brian Vanega in the 80? minute, which sailed past A.P.I.A.-Leichhardt goalkeeper Matthew Nash. 

Blacktown began the game with most of the possession, it was a unique style of passing, control and structure in the centre of the park that allowed Blacktown to control the pace of the game early on. 

The chances were few in the first-half, however Blacktown went closest when Brendan Maroney?s header struck the left side post.Vanega could have had a double in the game but a wasted free-kick from just outside the 18 yard box kept the game goalless. 

A.P.I.A.?s opportunities became crucial mistakes when Stephen Kayes? great run down the right-hand side ended with a complete miss hit, causing no threat to Blacktown goalkeeper Matt Nemes. 

Just before half-time A.P.I.A. ?s Daniel Clifford made a strong run down the middle striking the ball towards the left side of goal, however Blacktown goalkeeper Matt Nemes was alert, and produced a splendid save to keep the scores locked at the break.

The second-half began with both sides showing much more aggression and determination. The pace of the game increased as both teams shared the opportunities.

Blacktown?s Brendan Maroney again in the thick of it nearly slotted away the opener only to slip onto the ground after his foot failed to connect with the ball. 

A.P.I.A.-Leichhardt?s Stephen Kayes who was trying to make up for his earlier chance held valuable possession in the mid-stages of the second-half, and it almost paid dividends when Joe Bruni?s  sensational strike 20-meters out nearly made its way in, only to be saved by the in-form Blacktown keeper Matt Nemes. 

A.P.I.A. started to lose control of the game and chances turned into crucial missed opportunities, Franco Parisi failed to connect with the ball for a header.

Soon after A.P.I.A.?s Daniel Clifford launched the ball way over the bar from 35 meters out. 

The game was slipping away from the defending champions as Blacktown saw most of the possession in the last 15? minutes.

Stand-out playmaker Nick Roucco played a major role down the left side showing fast paced speed along with some superb ball skills. This proved the turn around in Blacktown?s favor. 

Blacktown?s possession began to frustrate the A.P.I.A. defence and it
proved costly when a free-kick was awarded 20 meters out, with no hesitation Brian Vanega slotted the ball into the back of the net to seal all three points. 

Following the match Blacktown coach Ken Schembri was delighted with the performance of his new squad, but stressed it was only the beginning:

?I was very impressed with the team, we played well under the pressure, I thought our defence was solid and our possession allowed us to control the game.

?It?s a good start, but there is a long way to go, but I?m very happy with the effort and courage the boys showed out there?. 

Match Stats

Blacktown City Demons 1  (Brian Vanega 80?)
A.P.I.A.-Leichhardt Tigers 0
Sydney Athletic Centre, Sunday 27th January, 2008

Blacktown City Demons: Matt Nemes, Daniel Wilkinson, Paul Karbon, Ryan Walsh, Ken Chun, Chris Bedzo, Brian Vanega, Nick Roucco, Brendan Moroney, Ray Raawt, Damir Prdanovic

A.P.I.A.-Leichhardt Tigers: Matthew Nash, Michael Galluzzo, Christian Cevenini, Daniel Clifford,  Stephen Kayes, Ian King, Peter Peralta, Joe Bruni, John Kelso, Franco Parisi, Anthony Mondello. 

Player Ratings
3 -Nick Roucco (BCD)
2 – Stephen Kayes (AL)
1 – Brendan Maroney (BCD)