Uninspiring Olympic victory at Belmore


Blacktown City, with seven first team regulars out through suspension or long-term injury, and even some of the coaching staff on crutches, fielded an almost youth team in order to fulfill this fixture but it was the home side who laboured away for the win.
Blacktown City had the first good opportunity of the game in the eighth minute when Jordan Simpson crossed for Chris Bedzo who could only manage to slice the ball wide before Olympic finally looked to be making a game of it. Chris Triantis fired in a corner that eventually landed at the feet of Iain Ramsay and fired a shot through a mass of bodies only for Demons? goalkeeper Ivan Necevski to react late to snuff out the danger.
It was Necevski again moments later who was able to tip over a Wither header from a Peter Zorbas free-kick from the halfway line, but it was just a sign of things to come for the relegation battling visitors.
It was in the 43? minute when Iain Ramsay looped in a pin-point cross from the right, instead of his customary position on the left, for Wither to rise above the pack and head home almost uncontested.
It was a cruel blow for the Demons who were once again found wanting at set pieces.
It didn?t get any better at the start of the second period when losing Luka Dukic to yet another suspected AC joint and another long-term injury in prospect.
In probably the best moment of the game for Blacktown it was near Man-of-the-Match Luke Austin who sent over a precision free-kick only to see Tyler Simpson side-foot the ball across the face and harmlessly out for a goal kick when the net was at his mercy.
That, as it transpired, would be the defining moment of the game as from then on it almost became a match where neither side could retain possession, nor really threaten with any worthwhile chances, and not all of it could be put down to the weather.
Olympic substitute James Kovas could have added insult to injury for the visitors but his wayward blast from the impressive Ramsay was, in truth, well in keeping with the match.
With Olympic in a mini-slump of form and showing signs of the heavy fixture toll of the last few weeks and Blacktown staring down the barrel of the wooden spoon, this was an intriguing if somewhat disappointing 90-minutes. 
?We had good possession in the first-half and for the first 15-minutes of the second but after that we seemed to drop off in intensity and direction and it turned into what I can only describe as an ?ugly? game,? a refreshingly open Olympic coach Milan Blagojevic stated afterwards.
?We didn?t really get into the match and I have to look at the six games we have played in the past two-weeks and say it has had an effect but at the end of the day we have taken the three-points and it keeps us in the hunt for a top four finish.
?That?s about the only thing I am happy about after this match,? he concluded.
Demons coach, Ken Schembri, admitted afterwards to the frustration of yet another 1-nil defeat but said:
?It?s the same as last week, we had a player ring in sick this morning and had to reshuffle the pack yet again but Olympic get a corner and somebody isn?t doing their job and we are a goal down again.
?I?m happy with our kids but they need more experience and are not quite ready for this level yet although they did battle to the end but it wasn?t a good display,? he finished.
Match Stats
Sydney Olympic 1 (Paul Wither 43?)
Blacktown City Demons 0
Venue: Belmore Sports Ground
Referee: Atila Stibinger
Assistant Referees: Brett Woodford, Dale Fuda
Fourth Official: Michael Clisdell
Crowd: 989
Sydney Olympic: 1. Michael Herbert; 16. Nathan Sherlock, 4. Mirko Jurilj, 5. Michael Cindric, 11. Carlo Musumeci, 22. Peter Zorbas, 18. Chris Triantis, 6. Roger Galayini (9. Anthony Hartshorn 61?), 10. Anthony Doumanis (15. Matthew Mayora 83?), 17. Iain Ramsay, 8. Paul Wither (12. James Kovas 90?)
Substitutes Not Used: 37. Siraj Al-Tall, 21. Nestor Tsioustas
Yellow Cards: Nil
Red Cards: Nil
Blacktown City Demons: 1. Ivan Necevski; 3. Paul Karbon, 7. Tyler Simpson, 8. Chris Bedzo, 12. Brendan Maroney, 18. Jessie Pinto (11. Nicholas Ruoco 80?), 19. Agyei Akwasi (9. Bruno Salas 61?), 21. Luka Dukic (14. Tim Rassmussen 49?), 25. Jordan Simpson, 29. Matt Lewis, 33. Luke Austin
Substitutes Not Used: 20. Matt Nemes, 32. Nick Fitzgerald
Yellow Cards: Nil
Red Cards: Nil
Player Ratings:
3 ? Paul Wither (SO)
2 ? Luke Austin (BCD)
1 ? Peter Zorbas (SO)
-By Micky Brock