TeleChoice Premier League Round 8 Review


Played without the general public in the ground ? only the home-side members were allowed into the venue ? both sides exhibited a fine performance to demonstrate that football is far greater than the off-field tensions that have surrounded this fixture previously.
A strong start by the White Eagles resulted in Milorad Simonovic opening the scoring via a set-piece. The midfielder?s free-kick somehow found its way through the Sydney United wall and into the back of the net, sending the Bonnyrigg players into raptures. Sydney United?s response was slow initially, though well marshalled by Glen Trifiro in midfield as Ante Milicic, David Zdrilic and Luka Glavas battled hard in the attacking third. The League leader?s equalised moments prior to the break via the head of Elsid Barkhousir. The ?pocket rocket? was left totally unmarked inside the penalty-area as he headed home Mitchell Thompson?s in-swinging corner.
Despite both sides creating goalscoring chances, the scores remained level through until the final whistle; the point for each side the correct result on the scale of proceedings.
At Belmore Sports Ground Sydney Olympic made a timely return to form with an impressive show against Bankstown City. The Blues scored early via Matthew Mayora to get the ball rolling, as Bankstown City lost player/coach Peter Tsekenis through injury.
Bankstown?s hopes of getting back in the match were given a push as experienced winger Stefanos Liavas scored a 31? minute equaliser. Jordan Simpson scored the winning goal for Sydney Olympic moments prior to the break though, securing the Blues a spot in the Top-Five, meanwhile complicating the season of Bankstown City who sit three-points adrift.
Penrith-Nepean United went ahead courtesy of Ben Gough after 20? minutes at Cook Park in St. Mary?s after the attacking midfielder saw his spot-kick parried by Demons goalkeeper Michael Herbert; the rebound fell to the feet of Gough who converted from close-range. Blacktown City?s response was swift and within 15?minutes, Daniel Wilkinson drew the Demons level to secure a point from the encounter. The draw sees Penrith-Nepean slip-out of the Top-Five on goal difference, meanwhile Blacktown City Demons sit a further three points behind.
At Leichhardt Oval, Sydney Tigers? difficult moment continued as the side fell to a 3-1 loss against Sutherland Sharks. The Sharks confirmed their impressive return to form with a fourth consecutive win sending the side into second-spot on the ladder. Striker Brad Boardman opened his season account in Round 7, and the burly striker added a brace to his tally on Sunday. Despite Franco Parisi pulling a goal back for the Tigers after the break ? the Tigers? playmaker again scored a remarkable goal, worthy of a mention in the season?s best goals ? though any thought of a comeback was immediately quashed as Michael Katz combined well with Neil Jablonski to score past his former teammate Phillip Zabaks for the 3-1 win.
On Saturday evening, West Sydney Berries? torrid run of results continued as Marconi Stallions scored two unanswered goals for a 2-0 win at Lidcombe Oval. Matthew Gordon scored two first-half goals to seal the win as a special mention must be made of Vamara Diarra and Nahuel Arrarte?s performances. Lee Sterrey?s side administered their lead in the second-half with complete ease as the Stallions cut the gap on both Sydney United and Manly United FC after both those sides failed to secure maximum points in their respective matches.
Manly United FC?s late equaliser salvaged the Cromer Park side?s blushes against a Wollongong Community FC that has gone through a difficult start to the season. Following the Wollongong side?s 7-0 thumping at the hands of Marconi Stallions, coach Tony Pace was released of his duties further adding to the difficult moment at the club. Football Director Glen Fontana will be filling the hot-seat and his first up match produced a point against the highly fancied Manly United FC. Samet Kaynak scored the visitors opener on 33? minutes as the side certainly did dominate proceedings for large spells. Joey Schirripa scored late in the match to salvage a point, in anticipation of Manly United?s re-scheduled match against Sydney Olympic to be played on Wednesday evening.
-By Joseph Carlucci