Manly United add further pain to Parramatta FC


IT wasn’t pretty, but it was job done for Manly United in Saturday night’s 2-0 PlayStation®4 National Premier Leagues NSW Men’s competition victory against Parramatta FC at Cromer Park.

The away side toiled from start to finish, but at times were chasing shadows with the gulf in class between the two squads obvious.

Manly carved out their first chance of the evening after 60 seconds.

Former Parramatta FC striker Marco Sama found some space on the edge of the area and fired goal wards, but Parramatta FC shot stopper Corey Finch held the chance.

On seven minutes a Sam Wilson cross from the left found Manly teammate Dejan Pandurevic, who volleyed well over the crossbar.

With 14 minutes played the visitors almost opened the scoring.

Dhari Alsaad unleashed a rocket which looked destined to nestle in the top corner, only to be denied by a fantastic fingertip save from Shaun Catlin, who was given an opportunity between the sticks for United with Dylan Mitchell injured.

Manly took the lead on 23 minutes.

Nikola Taneski produced a pinpoint set piece which Pandurevic headed home.

On 34 minutes United should have doubled their lead.

Attacking ace Brendan Cholakian, so often clinical in front of goal, blazed over from point blank range.

Moments later Parramatta FC tried their luck from a free kick, with Nikita Andricopoulos shooting just wide of the target.

Seconds after the break Cholakian had another chance to bulge the back of the net, but Finch was alert to the danger.

Pandurevic went close after 57 minutes but you got the feeling Parramatta FC were going to nick a goal as Manly failed to kill the contest.

Cholakian again got himself in a good position on 63 minutes following a cut back from Leigh Egger, but the playmaker skewed his shot wide with the goal at his mercy.

Both sides cleared their benches late on, and it was Manly substitute Dylan Macallister who came up trumps.

The journeyman pounced on a loose ball after a Taneski shot on 85 minutes, clipping over the scrambling Finch to seal the three points.

Parramatta FC battled until the final whistle, but there is no doubt they are a shadow of the team they were with Franco Cosentino in charge.

Manly skipper Jamie Lobb was content with the end result.

“In the first half we were in complete control and probably should have been a few goals up, not just the one,” he said.

“The longer it stayed 1-0 we knew they (Parramatta) would keep asking questions.

“It was good to kill it off at the end.

“Parramatta are a difficult team to play – they get five behind the ball and are hard to breakdown.

“Happy to also win at home, it was overdue.”

Parramatta FC skipper Hamish Galbraith, a Manly United junior, praised the effort from his team.

“It was on odd feeling playing against Manly, I’ve been here since I was 12,” he said.

“There are no hard feelings, I just saw an opportunity elsewhere and took it.

“Manly are a good team, I thought we did well across the 90 minutes.

“Our combinations will only get better before the year is out.

“We just need to keep working hard on the training pitch and rip in on game day.”

Match Stats

Manly United 2 (Dejan Pandurevic 23′, Dylan Macallister 85′)

Parramatta FC 0

Cromer Park, Saturday June 24, 2017

Referee: K.Patterson

Assistant referees: N.Wotton, A.Hosnani

Fourth official: M.Bailey

Manly United: 20.Shaun CATLIN, 2.Kieren PAULL, 3.Jamie LOBB, 4.Travis OUGHTRED, 6.Dom FERGUSON, 10.Brendan CHOLAKIAN, 11.Nikola TANESKI, 12.Leigh EGGER, 14.Dejan PANDUREVIC, (16.Sipan BERTI 65′) (13.Scott BALDERSON 90′) 15.Marco SAMA, (9.Dylan MACALLISTER 65′) 17.Sam WILSON

Substitutes not used: 28.Mitch ROOKE

Yellow cards: Nil

Red cards: Nil

Parramatta FC: 40.Corey FINCH, 11.Nikita ANDRICOPOULOS, 17.Victor ANYIMBA, 12.Marcus DONATIELLO, 20.Hamish GALBRAITH, 8.Ahmad HASANZADAH, (6.Abuzar  AWAZ 77′) 15.Johnny KONTOS, 10.Yuya SAMBA, 18.Adrian COCARO, 3.Nathan TSIOULOS, 7.Ryan BLAKELY (2.Bibek PANTA 70)

Substitutes not used: 1.Stefan GIGLIO, 9.Marko FILIPOVIC

Yellow cards: Donatiello 61′, Anyimba 76′, Alsaad 80′

Red cards: Nil