Sydney Olympic punish weakened Sharks


Goals to Matthew Mayora and Chris Triantis sealed the win, and have set the Blues onto the right path following a disappointing 2009.
After a minute?s silence for former Socceroo Ian Gray?s tragic passing, the action began with Sutherland pushing forward in the early exchanges.
Sutherland?s intentions to play a tough game was shown in the 3? minute when Sharks midfielder Nick Stavroulakis tackled Anthony Doumanis leaving the Olympic captain clutching at his ankle.
The Sharks dominance continued in the 9? minute as a great through ball over the top released Chris Price down the left-hand touchline. With the Olympic defence back pedalling, Tayfun Devrimol had no option but to cut him down to thwart the chance.
Bad luck struck Sutherland in the 13? minute however, as influential leader George Souris was stretchered off with a bad back injury with the ambulance called in for the 40-year-old defender.
On 19? minutes, a mix up in the back for Sydney Olympic could have cost them the opening goal as a miscommunication between goalkeeper Zaim Zanelli and Josh Lawson almost allowed Huseyin Jasli to get a shot on target.
Sydney Olympic?s attacking third then began to find their feet as a great through ball by Andre Gumprecht picked out former Sydney FC defender Nik Tsattalios to test the goalkeeper with a cross-turn-shot. The Sharks Nathan Denham magnificently punched the ball away.
With the wind behind their sails, Sydney Olympic continued to attack with Chris Triantis almost opening the scoring in the 25? minute.
A great solo run into the middle was followed by a strong low-drive, forcing Nathan Denham to dive to his right and deny the Blues the opening goal.
Sydney Olympic?s midfield began to dominate with new buys Phillip Makrys and Andre Gumprecht working well in the middle of the park, pinning the Sharks in their own half for several minutes.
As the first-half went on, the game turned into an up and down midfield battle.
Sutherland finally produced their first chance of the game in the 38? minute as Neil Jablonski struck a great volley from 20-yards; Zanelli produced an impressive save, diverting the ball over his crossbar.
Sydney Olympic started the second-half on the front foot with Matthew Mayora running the ball down the by-line, pestering the Sharks defence.
The home-side?s authority continued in the 55? minute as a Nik Tsattalios cross had the Sharks scrambling to clear before Matthew Mayora got to the ball.
The best chance of the match however, was to follow in the 63? minute when Tsattalios cleverly got around his marker to cut the ball back into the Sharks six-yard box, though again the Sharks managed to deny the Blues.
The pressure finally did crack Sutherland two minutes later. A cleverly floated cross was headed by James Monie across goal for 2009 NSW Premier League top goalscorer Matthew Mayora to open Sydney Olympic?s account with a fierce volley, leaving Denham helpless in the Sharks goal.
The goal seemed to spur Sydney Olympic into their best football of the evening, with sublime short passes keeping the ball away from Sutherland who continued to struggle after the loss of influential captain George Souris.
Moved into a more central role after Anthony Doumanis departed the game, Chris Triantis began to show why he made his debut in the A-League last season as he beautifully created a number of chances before narrowly sending a curling free-kick inches over Denham?s crossbar.
Sutherland?s best chance of the match arrived in the 73? minute when a Jablonski through ball was met by Jasli?s shot from outside the box, though his effort went straight into the waiting hands of Zanelli.
Sydney Olympic finished off the Sharks on 75? minutes as Matthew Mayora turned provider with a fine cut-back into the path of Triantis. The Blues midfielder buried the ball into the bottom right-hand corner, sending the home fans into hysterics.
To their credit, the Sharks didn?t give up and found the back of the net in the 80? minute, only to be called up by the linesman for offside.
The Sharks again beat Zanelli moments later, though the post was his saviour ensuring Sydney Olympic kick-started 2010 with a win.
Following the match, Sydney Olympic striker Matthew Mayora expressed his delight with the win:
?It was a good win for us.
?First-half we were a bit scrappy but in the second-half I thought we played some really great football so it is great to start the season with a win. It was good to be at home in front of a big crowd as well.??
The mood however was a very different one from the Sharks, with dynamic midfielder Nick Stavroulakis explaining the Sharks problems:
?Today was obviously different to our championship winning match last season. We lost our captain in the first 5? minutes or so, which is a major loss, and might have distracted us a bit.
?What can you do, I mean we had a few chances as well but we just have to bounce back from this one.
?Next week we have another away game against the West Sydney Berries, so if we can get the maximum three points there it would be great.??
In the Under 20s match, the Sutherland Sharks came from behind to defeat last year?s runners up Sydney Olympic in a tight tussle.
The winning goal came from the boot of Sharks midfielder Michael Svircevic in the final 15 minutes.
Match Details:
Sydney Olympic 2 (Matthew Mayora 65?, Chris Triantis )
Sutherland Sharks 0
Sunday, 28th February, 2010
Belmore Sports Ground, Belmore
Referee: Peter Vrtkovski
Assistant Referees: Lance Greenshields & Steven Nguyen
Fourth Official: Roger Doenau
Crowd: 1350
Sydney Olympic: 1.Zaim Zanelli (GK), 4.Josh Lawson, 5.Tayfun Devrimol, 6.Andre Gumprecht, 7.Peter McPherson, 8.Chris Triantis, 9.James Monie, 10.Anthony Doumanis (C) (23.Luke Gearin 53?), 11.Phillip Makrys, 15.Matthew Mayora (12.Cedric Ramirez 90?), 33.Nik Tsattalios
Yellow Cards: Nil
Red Cards: Nil
Sutherland Sharks: 1.Nathan Denham (GK), 2.George Souris (C) (3.Kyle Stuart 15?), 5.Adam Faour, 6.Chris Price, 7.Jim Bakis (16.James Lawrence 60?), 11.Ben Spruce, 12.Neil Jablonski, 14.Nick Stavroulakis, 18.Tyson Rhodes, 19.Huseyin Jasli, 22.Yianni Fragogiannis
Yellow Cards: Jim Bakis 31?
Red Cards: Nil
Player Ratings:
3 – Chris Triantis (SO)
2 – Nik Tsattalios (SO)
1 – Nick Stavroulakis (SS)
-By Christopher Georges