Midgley goal keeps Manly United on top


The only goal of the game arrived in the 55? minute when Manly side was awarded a penalty following a foul by Macarthur defender Matt Toogood, adjudged as holding back Manly United FC forward Craig Midgley inside the penalty-area.
Midgley slotted the ball easily past Macarthur goalkeeper Roy Bell to give his side the three-points.
Macarthur started off the stronger of the two sides, eager to repeat the solid performance that saw them pick up their first win of the season last weekend, against Penrith.
However, despite the early effort, Manly FC had the first chance of the match at the back of some great lead-up work by Manly?s Joey Schirripa. His bursting run down the left-flank saw him play a cross onto the head of in-form striker Robbie Cattanach, however the attempt just sailed over the bar.
Manly was posing a threat with their dominance of possession, clearly turning the tide into their favour. Midfielder Ashley Ryan, along with Schirripa and Cattanach, were linking up very well, creating some solid attacking set pieces.
Macarthur?s defence was fragile in the first-half and it nearly proved costly in the 8? minute when Manly midfielder Ashley Ryan picked up on a loose ball, initially intended for Macarthur defender Matt Toogood.
Despite the early scares, and a lack of possession, Macarthur had a great chance to sneak in the first goal of the match – and their first goal at Campbelltown Sports Stadium this season.
Hugo Coronel and Jason Lewis linked up in the middle with a great one-two, the move continued with a sensational through-ball for Wellington Phoenix forward Costas Barbarouses, who found himself one-on-one with Manly United goalkeeper Brad Swancott. Despite the great opportunity, Swancott stood firm and made a great save to keep the game goal-less.
In the 14? minute Manly United FC could have opened the game up when midfielder Michael Williams put in a great cross from the right side. Williams picked out Craig Midgley in the middle, he showed great acrobatic skill to pull-off a splendid volley, however it lacked power and ended up straight into Roy Bell?s hands.
In the 37? minute Macarthur defender Paul Crisp made a burst down the left side of the field ? Crisp struck a sensational shot at Brad Swancott, however the keeper pushed it away to safety.
Macarthur?s Craig Cooley and Barbarouses were in great touch throughout the first-half, however that nearly all came undone just before the break. Manly United defender Joey Schirripa struck a shot with venom beating Macarthur goalkeeper Roy Bell, however despite the good attempt the ball just sailed over the cross-bar to take the two teams level into the break.
The second-half began with Manly United on the attack, looking to collect the valuable three points away from home after their disappointing defeat against Sydney United last weekend.
In the 46? minute Joey Schirripa was again in the thick of it down the left-flank, this time providing a deadly ball into the box from a free-kick. Richard Williams latched onto the cross, however his attempted header was well saved by Roy Bell.
Macarthur was again sloppy in defence; however Michael Brown and David Gardiner were more involved in the attacking set-up. Barbarouses was showing great effort chasing down in attack and defence, trying to motivate his side.
However it was Manly who took all the motivation on offer in the 55? minute, Craig Midgley nicely put-away a penalty beating Macarthur Goalkeeper Roy Bell with ease.
Manly could have scored a couple of more goals following this point, however Robbie Cattanach shot in the 60? minute just past the right side of goal. The visitors Michael Williams and Richard Williams were having a great second-half, and both went close to putting the match beyond Macarthur?s reach.
Macarthur?s Stephen Old and Hugo Coronel carried their side?s hopes, and it nearly proved effective when Hugo struck a thunderous shot 10? minutes from time, however Manly goalkeeper Brad Swancott made a sensational save to give his side all three-points and a share of top spot in the TeleChoice Premier League.   
Manly United Assistant Manager Les Macedo was pleased with the effort; however he said that the team needs to remain consistent:
?We?re proud of the effort today, I thought last week we didn?t play too bad but didn?t get any points at the end of that, but today I thought we worked the ball real well.
?I thought we created great chances, and I thought our defence was solid when it needed to be, we would have liked more goals but in the end, we got the three-points and now we?re looking forward to the upcoming fixtures.?
Macarthur Rams 0
Manly United FC 1 (Craig Midgley 55?)
Venue: Campbelltown Sports Ground
Referee: Andrew Best 
Crowd: 400 approx.

Macarthur Rams: 40. Roy Bell; 2. Craig Cooley (14. Daniel McCann 58?), 4. Jason Lewis (27. James Young 69?), 5. Michael Brown, 6. David Gardiner, 7. Matt Toogood, 9. Stephen Old, 12. Shannon Hankin, 13. Costas Barbarouses (16. Steven Baveas 80?), 18. Hugo Coronel, 19. Paul Crisp.
Substitutes Not Used: 1. Brody Crane

Yellow Cards: Paul Crisp 36? minute
Red Cards: Nil.

Manly United FC: 1. Brad Swancott; 3. Andrew Mailer, 5. Pascal Julliard, 6. Brad Groves (33. Chris Payne 73?), 7. Ashley Ryan (15. Cameron Jones 65?), 8. Michael Williams, 9. Robbie Cattanach, 11. Craig Midgley, 16. Joey Schirripa, 18. Beau Bush, 19. Richard Williams.
Substitutes not used: 21. Luke Femia, 12. Michael Lloyd-Green, 2. Adam Israel
Yellow Cards: Joey Schirripa 26?
Red Cards: Nil
Player Ratings:
3 – Joey Schirripa (MU)
2 -Craig Midgley (MU)
1 – Jason Lewis (MR)
-By Johnny Casni