Round 7 Review – PS4 NPL 2 NSW Men’s

PlayStation®4 National Premier Leagues 2 NSW Men’s Round 7 match between North Shore Mariners  FC and Central Coast Mariners FC at the Northbridge Oval on April 17th, 2016.(Photos by Nigel Owen). The game ended 1-1.

SYDNEY FC showed their class when they demolished Macarthur Rams 7-0 at Lambert Park on Saturday night, sending out a warning to every other team in the competition.

Bankstown City kept apace of the young side with a 2-1 win at Mt Druitt, while dark horses Marconi showed their true quality with a 4-1 win over Fraser Park. Mounties also stayed in the hunt with a 3-2 win over Northern Tigers, while in the last game of the round, Western Sydney on Sunday night defeated Bankstown Berries 3-0 to maintain their place in second position. Here’s the full Round 7 roundup.

Mt Druitt Town Rangers 1 Bankstown City 2

A COMPOSED BANKSTOWN City maintained their place at the top of the table with a solid 2-1 victory over a courageous Mt Druitt Town Rangers, who battled bravely with 10 men after having a player sent off in the 64th minute.

The Lions’ winner had a hint of controversy about it as captain Michael Beauchamp floored a Mt Druitt opponent before the ball eventually spilt to rangy striker Gerard Ouffoue, who slotted home from close range.

Mt Druitt coach Aidan Desmond wasn’t happy with the referee’s decision not to penalise the former A-League hard man, especially when the incident led to the goal that would ultimately decide the game.

Bankstown City played with composure in the first half, with fullbacks Beauchamp and Todd Halloran launching numerous raids from deep and creating a number of chances for their teammates. Halloran also fired several long passes to the lively Kojiro Hori, who created havoc down the right flank with his footwork and speed.

Bankstown dominated the early stages of the first half. In the eleventh minute, Beauchamp set off on a surging run and from inside the box, passed to Dean Bereveskos, who missed from in front a golden opportunity he’d normally tuck away with ease.

Hori and Bereveskos then unleashed shots in rapid succession, only to see their efforts thwarted by impressive Mt Druitt goalkeeper Justin Biega.

In the 18th minute, rangy Mt Druitt striker Abraham Majok chased a through ball into the box and forcefully shouldered Halloran out of the way, conceding a free kick and the wrath of the opposition. A moment later, Beauchamp served up his own form of justice, upending Majok in what was fast becoming a willing battle between the former A-League defender and the tall and dangerous number nine.

For all of Bankstown’s dominance they had nothing to show on the scoreboard and against the run of play, it was the home side that opened the scoring from a swift counter-attack in the 27th minute, with Ardle slotting home for an unlikely 1-0 lead.

The goal seemed to rejuvenate the home side. Ardle just missed with an effort from outside the box, while Majok let loose with a rasping long range bomb that Bankstown goalkeeper Dion Shaw saved before diving bravely at the feet of an incoming opponent chasing the rebound.

Against the odds, Mt Druitt went to the sheds 1-0 up at halftime.

Whatever Bankstown coach Leo Carle said to his side during the break seemed to work, with the Lioms reinvigorated and going about their work with an intensity that was missing in the latter stages of the first half.

Halloran tried a long range speculator and Hori continued to toy and harrass down the right. But it was Huseyin Jasli, the pacy winger, who in the 55th minute, let rip with a long range rocket that left Biega stranded for a fantastic equaliser.

The visitors then launched attack after attack. Ouffoue rose above the defence to head a corner wide, and between them, Hori and Dhari Alsaad tormented their opponents down the right.

Then in the 64th minute, disaster struck for Mt Druitt when dangerman Majok raised his knees into goalkeeper Shaw, receiving a second yellow card and his marching orders from referee Fisher.

Bankstown did their best to take advantage of having an extra man, confidently stroking the ball around and playing with width. They dominated the midfield through Hudap and Gomez, and created chances, but Mt Druitt proved to be a tough nut to crack, refusing to lie down and playing some good football. Indeed, there were moments when it was easy to forget that they were one man down.

But despite Mt Druitt’s heroics, the visitors sealed the match in the 77th minute, when the ever-dangerous Ouffoue slotted home what was a messy goal started by Beauchamp after he’d floored a Mt Druitt defender in the leadup. As Mt Druitt protested, Bankstown celebrated and notched yet another win to hold onto their place at the top of the table.

Mt Druitt coach Aidan Desmond said he was disappointed that the winning goal was allowed but rather than stew over the negative, chose instead to focus on the courage and bravery of his team.

“Bankstown is an excellent team, they’re at the top of the table for a reason, but I’m really proud of my boys, they played their best and never backed down,” Desmond told Football NSW. “After Abraham (Majok) was sent off they dug deep and refused to give up. I’m proud of them for that.”

Meanwhile, Bankstown coach Leo Carle was pleased with his side’s performance.

“I think we dominated that game but they scored against the run of play from a counter attack,” Carle told Football NSW. “Good luck to them though, they had one chance and they took it. But I do think we were composed and in control. I expected them to be tough and they were. But we were solid and we got the three points, so I’m happy for that.”

Mt Druitt Town Rangers 1 (Shayne Ardle 28’) Bankstown City 2 (Huseyin Jasli 55’, Gerard Ouffoue 77’)

Saturday 16 April

Popondetta Park, Emerton

Referee: C Fisher

Assistants: D Allatt, B Wright

Mt Druitt Town Rangers FC1. Justin Biega (GK), 2. Lord Darkoh (10. Patrick Dixon 64’), 3. Brian Griffin-Colls, 6. Nicholas Trimble, 7. Luke Clifford, 8. Matthew Clowes, 11. Abraham Majok, 23. Shayne Ardle

Unused Subs: 5. Mubarak Saeed, 12. Jamie Dib, 44. Christopher Moore (GK)

Yellow Cards: 18. Scott Goodwin 40’, 11. Abraham Majok 45’ 64’, 6. Nicholas Trimble 78’

Red Cards: Abraham Majok 64’

Coach: Aidan Desmond

Bankstown City FC1. Dion Shaw (GK), 2. Todd Halloran, 5. Michael Beauchamp (C), 8. Dominic Hudap, 9. Gerard Ouffoue, 10. Christopher Gomez, (12. Steven Veleski), 11. Huseyin Jasli, 13. Dhari Alsaad, 14. Dean Bereveskos (22. Kyohei Kimura), 16. Kojiro Hori (3. Tayfun Buyukkopru 75’), 23. Grant Lynch

Unused Subs: 4. Mate Lucic, 26. Nicholas Carosi

Yellow Cards: 11. Huseyin Jasli 44’, 10. Christopher Gomez 64’

Coach: Leo Carle

Spirit FC 0 St George 0

SPIRIT AND ST GEORGE fought out a physical nil-all draw at Christie Park on Saturday night, a result that went some way towards making up for heavy defeats suffered by both sides last week.

Spirit copped a 3-0 hiding to Bankstown City, while St George were on the receiving end of a 5-0 beating by Sydney FC.

“Clean sheet, don’t concede, don’t lose, that’s important,” St George co-coach Nass Martino told Football NSW. “That’s part of getting back on the horse.”

St George’s injury woes this season have been well documented so to travel to Marsfield with an understrength side and to come away with a draw was a good result. 

So how tough was the game?

“It was physical but we just didn’t take our chances,” St George co-coach Nass Martino told Football NSW. “We hit the post twice and had one disallowed for offside at the end.

“To Spirit’s credit they battled and could have pinched it but our keeper stood firm and our defence stood firm.”

When asked who stood out for his side, Martino said “Everyone put in the same shift to be honest. Nick Rouca put in a good shift out wide, Bruno Pivato, when we put him up top in the second half, ran amock and put pressure on their defence. Jacob Sullivan was constantly probing and trying different things. Everybody put in an effort. Both teams battled, there was no rest. As expected, they were strong and physical. Christie Park is never an easy place to visit.”

Spirit FC 0 St George 0

Saturday 16 April

At Christie Park, Marsfield

Spirit FC1. M. Nelson, 2. D. Cunningham (C), 3. H. Wells, 4. M. Streeter, 5. A. Robertson,8. G. Cornwell, 10. K. Changyu, 13. P. Reilly, 14. J. Mcleod, 15. A. Doyle, 16. M. Mcalpine, 17. R. George, 18. B. Gibson, 19. T. Lovell, 20. N. Jagelman, 51. D. Lowery (GK)

Coach: Mark McCormick

Yellow Cards: 8. G Cornwell

St George FC1. George Bouropoulos (GK), 2. Daniel Kamel, 3. Ali Nasreddine, 4. Jonathan Kontalis, 5. Billy Darwich, 6. Reuben Lagos, Stefan De Jesus, 8. Tarik Ercan, 9. Stevan Ilic, 10. Nicolas Rouco, 13. Peter Vassillis, 15. Nicolas Perez, 17. Bruno Pivato, 19. Daniel Tini, 25. Jacob Sullivan, 50. M. Stivic

Yellow Cards: 8. Tarik Ercan, 2. Daniel Kamel, 3. Ali Nasreddine, 38.  Jacob Sullivan

Coaches: Nass Martino and Ivo De Jesus

Sydney FC v Macarthur Rams

SYDNEY FC PUT Macarthur Rams to the sword 7-0 at Lambert Park on Saturday night in a performance that coach Robbie Stanton described as “ruthless”.

“They weren’t bad, we were just extremely ruthless,” Stanton told Football NSW. “They started quite compact, quite disciplined, very well organised as you’d expect from a team coached by Lee Sterrey, and we had to work hard to break them down.”

It took 35 minutes for FC to score their first goal, one that Macarthur coach Lee Sterrey said was an “absolute defensive blunder”.

“We coughed the ball up 25-30 yards from goal, our keeper saved at his feet a shot from point-blank range, and the ball deflected off Kevin Ly and back into the net,” Sterrey told Football NSW.

“At that stage, we were playing extremely well. We were holding them, they hadn’t had a shot at goal, they were going backwards and sidewards and had some possession dominance but weren’t doing a lot with it. We were frustrating them, we probably had three counter-attacks where we could of scored but didn’t.”

FC scored again to take a 2-0 lead into the sheds, but Sterrey was confident his side had the ability to come back and make a game of it. Unfortunately for the Rams,  disaster struck immediately after the break when the young Sky Blues scored three quick goals for an unbelievable 5-0 lead after 52 minutes.

“It was basically a give-up, an attitude result, not an ability result,” Sterrey said.

“It was very disappointing, because one thing Macarthur always prides themselves on is the ability to play hard with a certain amount of attitude. I’ve gone from last week and being very proud of them to this week and being absolutely filthy. It’s just not good enough for a first grade team.”

Stanton told Football NSW that after halftime his side focused on maintaining their intensity and stretching Macarthur as much as they could.

“They weren’t as compact as they had been earlier in the first half, and we knew that they’d chance their hand a bit at 2-0 down,” he said. “In the end I think our conditioning, speed and ball movement kept prying them open. The scoreline probably doesn’t truly reflect the effort they put in in the first 30 minutes and it might sound like an easy game, but the reality was, games can turn quickly and it did. If you’re off a bit, especially against good teams, you get hurt, and that’s what happened to them.

“Not getting carried away but it was coming at some stage where we would really take a lot of our chances, and I guess last night was our night. We came out of our blocks and it was just quick, quick, quick. We made some good choices. It was one of those days where everything goes well for you but it could’ve been a close game as well. No doubt about that.”

Sydney FC 7 (D. Araujo, M. Burgess, C. Lokolingoy 3) Macarthur Rams 0 (2 own goals)

Saturday 16 April

At Lambert Park, Leichhardt

Sydney FC1. Mitchell Evans (GK), 2. Brendan Curtis, 3. Patrick Flottmann, 4. George Timotheou, 5. Yianni Spyrakis (C), 6. Nicola Kuleski, 7. Daniel Araujo, 8. Max Burgess, 9. Bai Antoniou, 10. Aaron Avery, 12. Charles Lokolingoy, 14. Cristian Gonzalez, 16. Tom Slater, 17. Chris Zuvela, 19. Matt Green, 22. Duro Dragicevic

Coach: Robbie Stanton

Macarthur Rams FC1. Nikodin Matic, 2. Craig Cooley (C), 4. B. Cornish, 5. Elsid Barkhousir, 6. Kevin Ly, 7. Eli Squillacioti, 8. Cristian Leiva Martinez, 9. Anthony Schmidt, 12. David McMurray, 13. Daniel Carrozza, 14. Hayder Jasim, 16. Mason Versi, 17. Anthony Nicola, 19. Damien Travis, 20. Jair Fernandez

Coach: Lee Sterrey

Yellow Cards: 13. Daniel Carozza, 19. Damien Travis

Marconi 4 Fraser Park 1

MARCONI SHOWED their class with a 4-1 victory over Fraser Park at Marconi Stadium on Sunday.

Fraser Park played well for the first half hour and led 1-0 through a Nathan Sansom goal, but Marconi struck twice before halftime to lead 2-1.

“We had opportunities in the first half and actually led 1-0 but they scored two goals in the space of five minutes,” Fraser Park coach Branko Culina told Football NSW. “In the second half the game was even until we made a mistake and gave the ball away in the middle of the park. We didn’t clear and they scored for 3-1. We then conceded a fourth goal from what looked like a clear offside but again it doesn’t matter because at the end of the day when things aren’t going your way, those things happen.”

Fraser Park was missing key men Jeffrey Issa, Kevin Oliveira and David Talone, and being a small squad, covering such influential personnel is a huge challenge.

“Missing key players like that doesn’t help, especially when we have such a small squad, but it gives their replacements the opportunity to prove they’ve got what it takes to step up,” Culina added. “I was disappointed by the blowout in the scoreline and I thought the game was a lot closer than 4-1, but at the end of the day the scoreline doesn’t lie either.”

Despite the loss, Culina said his players put in a good effort and played with heart against a side boasting some quality individuals capable of turning a match in a twinkling. 

“Marconi have so many quality individuals like Rooney, Jesic, Pavlovic and Giannaros, who are all A-League players,” Culina said. “We don’t have players of that quality and when you come across those kinds of teams they’ll punish you even if they don’t play well, because the individuals can turn a game.”

In the next fortnight, Fraser Park face Western Sydney Wanderers and Sydney FC, so the competition doesn’t get any easier for the Marrickville club. “As you saw by Sydney FC’s 7-0 result against Macarthur, things are going to be tough. I know (Macarthur coach) Lee Sterrey pretty well and he’s a very good coach, but it doen’t matter how good you are as a coach, if the opposition has got more depth and quality than you, they’ll hurt you.

“The positive thing about a loss like this is that we know what needs to be done if we want to compete with the better teams. We’ve got to keep the ball better and we’ve got to make fewer mistakes but that’s something we’re learning and hopefully we can learn qucikly enough to limit those mistakes in the future.”

Marconi 4 (Sean Rooney 2, Marko Jesic 2) Fraser Park 1 (Nathan Sansom)

Sunday 17 April

Marconi Stadium, Bossley Park

Marconi Stallions FC1. Chad Taylor (GK), 2. S. De Oliveira, 4. Simon Valastro, 5. P Pelekanos, 6. R. Colletta, 7. Mirjan Pavlovic, 8. Sean Rooney, 10. Marko Jesic, 11. Sam Perre, 16. Noah Chianese, 17. Steven Drewery, 18. Brandon Vella, 21. Kristian Sekutkoski (GK), 22. Emmanuel Giannaros, 23. Christopher Nunes (C), 24. Christopher Godoy Bascur

Yellow Cards: 11. Sam Perre

Coach: Jeff Suzor

Fraser Park1. Wayne Estevao (GK), 4. Peter Crevani, 5. Nicholas Dimitropoulos (C), 6. A Todoroski, 8. Zac Ribeiro, 11. Jordan Roberts, 13. Pasqualino Cappuccio, 14. N Todoroski, 15. Daisan Kim, 16. Nicholas Mouzourakis, 17. Nathan Sansom, 18. Askin Oygur, 19. Joseph Delia, 20. Adem Kir, 38. Marshall Hastings 

Yellow Cards: 8. Zac Ribeiro, 13. Pasqualino Cappuccio, 20. Adem Kir

Coach: Branko Culina

North Shore Mariners 1 Central Coast Mariners 1

NORTH SHORE MARINERS and Central Coast Mariners played out a scrappy one-all draw at Northbridge Oval on Sunday.

In a match that both coaches agreed wasn’t a great spectacle, it ended up being a torrid battle between two committed sides intimately familiar with one another.

“It wasn’t the best game, I expected a bit more from both teams but we ended up getting the draw,” North Shore coach Joe Haywood told Football NSW. “They’re probably the more dominant team on paper with the A-League players they’ve got, but it was our home game and we’ve got some good players as well. So overall I’m happy to take a point.”

Central Coast opened the scoring midway through the first half when striker Trent Buhagiar struck home a great half-volley. Buhagiar was a constant menace to the North Shore defence, finding plenty of space behind their high-pressing back four.

“Trent was able to exploit them, he was dangerous throughout,” Central Coast Mariners coach Ben Cahn told Football NSW. “He was probably our biggest threat, but Liam O’Dell and Reece Papas were pretty resilient too.”

Despite being down 1-0 at halftime, Haywood believed his side had the better of the first half. “They were tryng to catch us out on the counter-attack and used their speed to try to get at us,” he said. “That’s their main threat and they caught us out on numerous occasions with that counter-attacking threat.”

In the second half Haywood made ome slight changes to his side’s shape and personnel, a move that seemed to make a difference. “We equalised through Marquin Smith with about 25 miutes to go,” Haywood said. “We had a goal disallowed and their striker Josh Bingham had a great chance but it was saved by Stefan Giglio with about five (minutes) to go. All in all, they had chances, we had chances, they had some of the ball, we had some of the ball. The game was a bit scrappy, but overall we were happy with the result. They wre probably the better team on the day but we also put up a fight and had our chances as well.”      

For North Shore, Michael Cole showed his experience, making a difference when switching from right wing to centre midfield, while goal-scorer Marquin Smith had a good game from midfield and Zac Sfiligoi was solid in central defence. 

“It wasn’t a brilliant spectacle or an aesthetically pleasing game of football,” said Ben Cahn. “But it was a good battle. The pitch isn’t really conducive to good football, it’s small and has a pretty average surface. North Shore are quite organised and they came to stop us from controlling the game.”

Cahn said he was proud of his young side, which also included a few players from the under-20s.

“Our first grade side is made up completely of under-20 players but we also used three or four others from our actual under-20s that managed to survive a pretty physical enounter against an experienced team full of players with much more experience than ours. It’s a shame we couldn’t hang on, the goal they scored was probably the clearest chance they had. We had a couple and punished them with one early on. It was a similar story to our season so far, we usually create enough chances to win games but we’re just having a bit of trouble converting them.”

Cahn admitted that although a draw was probably a fair result, he wasn’t happy, but there were aspects of the game that pleased him.

“There were some pleasing aspects to the performance. I have had massive doubts whether our team could cope with experienced physical sides but today we showed that we can still grind out chances in games like that and we can still be resilient defensively. Ultimately we missed two very, very good chances and their goal was probably the only clear chance they had all day.”         

North Shore Mariners 1 (Marquin Smith) Central Coast Mariners 1 (Trent Buhagiar)

Sunday 17 April

At Northbridge Oval, Northbridge

North Shore Mariners1. Anthony Zecchinati (GK), 3. Chris Lindsay, 6. Ricky Woodward, 7. Tadhg Purcell, 10. L. Everett, 12. Nicholas Chapman, 13. Marquin Smith, 14. Jake Mavin, 15. J. Mbakwe,  17. M. Cole, 19. Joseph Esposito, 20. Zac Sfiligoi, 21. Marley Peterson, 28. Gianni Fabbro, 35. J. Aguirre, 36. Stefan Giglio

Yellow Cards: 7. Tadhg Purcell, 17. M. Cole

Coach: Joe Haywood

Central Coast Mariners FC1. Andrew Pearce (GK), 2. Brian Jamba, 3. Reece Papadimitrios, 4. Cooper Boswell, 5. Daniel Tuddenham, 6. Liam O’Dell (C), 7. Lachlan Wales, 8. Cade Mapu, 9. Josh Bingham, 10. Ryan Peterson, 11. Christopher Hurley, 12. Trent Buhagiar, 15. Nathan Hundley, 18. S. White, 20. T. Heward-Belle (GK)  

Yellow Cards: 10. Ryan Peterson

Coach: Ben Cahn

Mounties Wanderers 3 Northern Tigers 2

MOUNTIES WANDERERS SCORED a 3-2 victory over Northern Tigers in an exciting encounter at Valentine Sports Park on Sunday.

Despite having several players sidelined by injury, the youngsters brought up from the Mounties’ Under-20s performed with distinction.

According to Mounties coach David Perkovic, his side dominated the first 45 minutes and deserved a 1-0 halftime lead after Christian Torelli scored from a rehearsed move from a corner. “They (Northern Tigers) didn’t really ask any questions of us in the first half,” Perkovic told Football NSW. “I felt we were quite comfortable and creative when we had the ball, while all of the Tigers’ possession was in their own half. We were quite happy for them to have it there.”   

The game got a little bit livelier in the second half, as the Tigers surged forward to equalise through Liam Mcconaghy, who capitalised on some great work by Braden Cheng.

“I thought that at one-all we could go on to win the game,” Tigers coach Steve Hurd told Football NSW. But his hopes evaporated as Mounties responded by re-taking the lead through 18-year-old Josh Viera, before Reid Taylor slotted home a penalty to give his side a 3-1 advantage. The Tigers’ Cheng-Mcconaghy combination again worked a treat, with Mcconaghy bridging the gap to 3-2. But despite a frantic finish, Mounties held on for the win.

Perkovic was delighted with his side’s performance.

“It was a good peformance by us, especially when we’ve had so many players out,” he said. “But the young boys from the Under-20s like Christian (Torelli), Josh (Viera), James Letta and Gandor Bah, all stepped up to the plate and contributed to the win. It was a great effort.”

Meanwhile, Hurd said he was frustrated by the result. “Mounties were very well organised, disciplined and hard to break down, but their gameplan was to stop us playing,” he said. “They were no threat offensively at all and yet they ended up scoring three goals. Just one of those things really.

“I was confident at one-all that we could beat them. Cheng was causing them plenty pf bother down the right-hand side; Mcconaghy was on, and Josh Ward had a great first grade debut at the back. It was really a game we should never have lost.” 

Mounties Wanderers 3 (Christian Torelli, Josh Viera, Reid Taylor) Northern Tigers 2 (Liam Mcconaghy 2)

Sunday 17 April

At Valentine Sports Park No. 2, Glenwood

Mounties Wanderers FC1. Daniel Sadaka (GK), 2. James Letta, 4. Gandor Bah, 5. Patrick Gatt, 6. Aleksandar Tomic, 7. Neftali Gonzalez, 8. Emanuel Elali, 11. Juan Chavez, 20. Reid Taylor,  22. Wade Oostendorp, 25. Christian Torrelli, 27. Joshua Viera, 28. M. Cklamovski, 29. Jake Ingle, 30. James Stojcevski

Coach: David Perkovic

Northern Tigers FC2. R. Farrell, 3. W. Foristal, 5. M. Glanville, 6. P. Davies, 7. J. Hardwick, 9. L. Mcconaghy 2, 10. L. Dawson (C), 11. M. Smith, 12. B. Cheng, 13. J. Arima, 14. J. Lim, 15. J Ward, 16. S Saveas, 19. A. Brown, 20. R. Keayes, (GK), 21. N. Polinsky

Coach: Steve Hurd

Western Sydney Wanderers 3 Bankstown Berries FC 0

WESTERN SYDNEY WANDERERS remain in second place on the table after a 3-0 victory over Bankstown Berries at Popondetta Park on Sunday night.

The win keeps them in the hunt just two points behind Sydney FC and Bankstown City, who lead the competition with 18 points from a possible 21.

Wanderers coach Trevor Morgan was delighetd with his team’s performance. “It was quite a good result for us,” Morgan told Football NSW. “We’ve had a very heavy training week, we pushed them very hard and they still managed to concentrate and do well in the game. I was quite pleased with them tonight.”

Morgan said his side bombed two very good one-on-ones in the first half, but made no mistake the third time around when Tariq Maia finished a cut back from Josh Macdonald to give the Wanderers a 1-0 lead.

The Berries competed well but were made to rue some silly mistakes that proved costly.

“We done a few things right, it was a big improvement on last week,” Berries coach Rod Williams told Football NSW. “But again, three silly mistakes against a team like that is going to punish us. We got in behind them a a couple of times, hit the crossbar and their goalkeeper coughed up a couple of short balls that we should have punished. But in the end they’re a good side and they make you pay for your mistakes. I was happy with the way we played, it wasn’t too bad, but again we’ve just got to stop the mistakes.”

Wanderers led 1-0 at halftime after Maia’s strike but Williams was confident his side would continue to compete in the second half. But unfortunately for the Berries, a couple more defensive errors just after the break saw Western Sydney extend the gap to 3-0, a lead that proved to be insurmountable.

“After they scored their third, we started to play a bit more football and started to come together,” Williams said. “But it was just too little too late.”

When asked who performed well for his side, Williams made spcial mention of Nicholas Paras, young Kyle Ewart, Garang Awac and Gavin Forbes, who held his own up front.

“We made a couple of real silly mistakes again, schoolboy type errors and we got punished for them. They’re one of them teams that if you give the ball away, especially in key areas, you’re going to get turned over and that’s what happened. We’ve got to learn from that but the last 25 minutes I was very happy with the boys. But we’ve got to play 90 minutes like that, not just in fits and starts.”  

Morgan meanwhile wasn’t just pleased with his side’s performance, but also with the opportunity to give debuts to a couple of talented youngsters.

“Tonight I think it was a pretty good group performance to be honest. Jonathan Aspropotamitis played, which had a good impact on us, he’s not always going to get to play because he’s with the first team so much. I think Lachlan Scott was very good tonight, even though he didn’t score. Josh Macdonald played the best game I’ve seen him play for a while and he deserved a goal.

“To be fair, it was a good team performance and probably the most pleasing thing was we were able to give two boys their debuts tonight. Two young ones, Jordan Morfitis, who’s only 18 got a bit of time; and we played a young boy, Ramy Najjarine, who’s 15. We think he’s a bit special, and because the game was going so well, we gave him an opportunity and he did very, very well. We like to give young kids a go and he got a half an hour on the pitch. It was a great night in that way.” 

Western Sydney Wanderers 3 (Tariq Maia, Mario Shabow, Josh Macdonald) Bankstown Berries 0

Sunday 17 April

At Popondetta Park, Emerton

Western Sydney Wanderers FC 1. Nicholas Suman, 2. Lachlan Roberts, 5. Jackson Bandiera, 6. Keanu Baccus, 8. Cameron Devlin, 9. Lachlan Scott, 10. Tariq Maia, 11. Mathieu Cordier, 14. Brenton Fox, 15. Ramy Najjarine, 16. Jordan Morfitis, 18. Matthew Symes (GK), 22. Jonathan Aspropotamitis, 23. Shayne D’Cunha, 33. Josh Macdonald, 34. Mario Shabow, 36. Liam Youlley          

Yellow Cards: 22. Jonathan Aspropotamitis

Coach: Trevor Morgan

Bankstown Berries 2. Andrew Vitucci, 4. Alexander Becerra, 5. Liam Mckenna, 6. Peter Dimitropoulos, 7. Kyle Ewart,  9. Gavin Forbes, 10. Nicholas Paras, 11. Tai Smith, 12. Garang Awac, 14. James Ralston, 15. Riccardo Milano, 19. Dimitrios Zakilas, 40. Christopher Becerra (GK), 44. Michael Skourtis, 16. Steven Stavroupolis, 18. Jake Bradshaw

Yellow Cards: 10. Nicholas Paras

Coach: Rod Williams