Round 17 Review – State League Men’s


Answers, finally answers and plenty of goals. Yes, things have become clearer in terms of whose going to be competing for the Top five positions in this years State League Men’s competition after Round 17 action. But four teams don’t go into two so plenty of story to tell across the next five weeks.

However, it was a table topping affair which had our attention this weekend and didn’t that have a surprise in the works. It’s game on in the premiership race as well!

Match of the Round: Central Coast United v Fraser Park

You can’t win a football match within five minutes, but you can definitely lose one. And that’s exactly what happened in our match of the round this week.

Fraser Park scored three goals within a five-minute period around the half hour mark to secure a valuable three points at Pluim Park. Their goals came in quick fire fashion through Christian Soares and Matthew Nezval with an own goal sandwiched in between the two.

The away sides intention was clear from the outset as they pressed Central Coast United onto the back foot during the opening five minutes.

However, most chances were coming at the other end after the hosts broke through on occasion. Firstly, the hosts were unable to take advantage of a three on two situation after Daniel Mcfarlane broke free on the left. With striker Adam Woodbine able to get a shot off on the end of it.

Mcfarlane then tried to do it himself with a shot rocketing past the left-hand facing post. The Central Coast captain was proving to be a handful. However, when he hooked a shot wide after wrestling the ball into his control inside the box, you felt it was going to cost the home side.

And it proved to be a few minutes later when a beautiful switch of play found Eric Tomesek on the right. His delivery deflected into the feet of Christian Soares who took a touch and hit a low shot which snuck under the keeper.

It wasn’t one goal for too long though, Fraser Park doubled the advantage when an opportunistic ball from midfield caught Graham Toope by surprise, his headed back pass finding its way into their own net.

The home crowd was stunned; however, it was just about to become worse. Shu Torihara pounced on a loose ball inside the centre circle. Torihara then sent a pin-point ball into the path of Matthew Nezval who wasn’t going to miss from that position. Nezval caressing the ball into the far bottom corner.

At this point, everyone was stunned, and the game coasted towards the half time break with neither team really creating opportunities.

As the second half opened and began to flow, it looked like getting worse for the hosts. Cam Philpot opened the half in terms of chances with his powerful effort just missing the target.

It’s been a while since Thomas Lyons has hit the net for Central Coast and maybe that’s why when an opportunity fell his way, the ball was skied over the bar from close range.

Fraser Park were comfortable at this point, they could have been more comfortable though had Luiz Lobo taken his chance after finding space inside the box to the left-hand side. However, his shot, suffered a similar fate.

Central Coast United kept searching for a way back into the contest, they just couldn’t create the chances. Which made a save from Fraser Park keeper Ian Johnson more vital. Corey Atkinson snuck in by the byline on the right-hand side before unleashing an effort which was well parried out of danger.

The only over chance of note in the late stages came from Daniel Mcfarlane who hit the crossbar from a free kick in injury time.

It’s a vital win for Fraser Park who may just have given themselves a sniff in relation to the premiership and club championship.

Fraser Park coach Renato Jelen was delighted with the performance. “I thought the boys fought hard and really deserved the win, normally we create our goals but tonight luck was on our side.”

“First ten to fifteen minutes we were dominating the game but then they grew into it, they had the momentum, then we scored and from then on I felt it was our game.”

Central Coast United coach Stu Davis was disappointed. “Just five minutes of madness cost us the game. You can’t make individual errors like that, gift your closest rival three goals and expect to win a football match. Simple as that.”

 Match Stats

Central Coast United: 0

Fraser Park: 3 (Soares 28’, Toope (OG) 31’, Nezval 33’)

Central Coast United: 1. Jack O’Mally, 2. Jack Ragen (23. Cayleb Murray), 8. Scott Mcginley, 10. Alexander Arbelo (73. Jakeb Brownlow), 12. Graham Toope, 14. Geordie Howe, 20. Yuki Morikawa, 24. Daniel Mcfarlane, 30. Adam Woodbine, 94. Oscar Torres Inchaustti, 99. Thomas Lyons (7. Corey Atkinson).

Subs: 21. Tom Marsh

Fraser Park: 1. Ian Johnson, 2. Talan Myers, 4. Alexis Wenzel, 7. Christian Soares, 8. Dominic Siu ((3. Lionel Glorieux) 29. Bellal Kaamouchi), 10. Luiz Lobo, 13. Rodrigo Cataldi, 15. Cam Philpot, 16. Eric Tomesek, 18. Shu Torihara, 45. Matthew Nezval.

Subs: 9. Alexander Nicolosi, 32. Maurilio BorriJunior, 94. Everton Vendrasco.

 Hurstville FC 2-1 Western Condors

Home win, tick. Jesse Gagro goal, tick. Adrian Livio goal, tick. Solidified third place, tick. Things are looking good for Hurstville FC with another performance full of character to overcome Western Condors.

It was a fast start for the hosts as they opened the scoring within the first few minutes. Nicholas Kougious broke down the right and delivered a perfectly weighted cross which found Adrian Livio at the back post. The lead was then doubled before the clock hit twenty minutes, a fluid passing combination saw Jesse Gagro on the end of it. Gagro who suddenly has found his goal scoring form once again finished off.

In classic Hurstville FC style though, they then closed shop backing themselves defensively. The Western Condors sensing opportunity, started to play the football we know they are capable of. And they were rewarded with a Gabriel Gomes free kick which curled around a poorly placed wall into the bottom corner.

Scores could have been even after the interval if not for a crucial save from Matthew Massarotto, saving a shot from point blank range. The Condors then went down to ten and Hurstville FC then regained the advantage creating chances which could have secured the result.

In the end though it finished as another win for Hurstville FC, who now have a five-point gap over fourth place.

Nepean FC 2-1 UNSW

Maybe they should start ten every week? A red card has jolted Nepean FC into action against rivals UNSW FC on Saturday night.

It wasn’t looking positive for the hosts. The opening half was a tight one with the visitors claiming the lead courtesy of Nima Beik. The striker dinked the keeper from inside the six-yard box after a throw in found its way to him.

Nothing participates in dry July as well as the Cook Park pitch. Every game played on there is decided by a combination of heart and desire. Fortunately for the hosts, they showed just that in their second half performance.

After being reduced to ten men, they collectively stepped up with a bit of help from the bench. Having not started the match, Jamie Dib played a part in both goals. Firstly, beating his man down the right side before cutting it back to Nathan Ralph who finished off. Then later delivering a corner a nice area which was coolly finished off by a cooperating UNSW defender.

Nepean coach Magdy Andrawes was ecstatic with his team’s victory, “I’m very proud of the side, they showed heart which we haven’t seen from them since round one”.

Whilst for UNSW FC, this about puts the nail in the coffin of their disappointing season.

South Coast Flame 3-3 Prospect United

It wouldn’t be a round of State League without a high scoring epic. Yes, plenty of late drama in this one saw South Coast Flame take a point with a late penalty against Prospect United.

In case you didn’t realize, Saturday was a very windy night and no more so than down the coast. South Coast Flame took advantage of the wind at their back with a goal just before the half time break. Julio Mushaba scored his first goal since returning to the club scoring from an outrageous angle off the post.

The second half took a while to get going in a clash with two teams with contrasting styles. With the home side preferring a possession-based style in comparison to Prospect’s counter attacking.

And it looked to swing Prospect’s way when Daniel Vukovic and Josh Roffael both scored goals within a sixty second period during the second half.

In response, the Flame lifted and were rewarded when Hiroaki Ushijima capitalized on a parried Louis Connel shot. 2-2

Momentum was swinging like a newtons cradle. And Prospect were awarded a penalty with ten minutes to go which was saved heroically by South Coast captain Matthew White.

The visitors kept pushing and thought they had the winner when Stephen Vukovic scored in the 93rd minute after a good build up down the right.

But there was one more twist yet when just a minute later the Flame were awarded a penalty. Up stepped birthday boy Matthew Mazevski who converted to earn his side a draw.

Balmain Tigers 4-3 Hurstville City Minotaurs

Well, they don’t do things the easy way, but Balmain Tigers have another win as they continue their resurgence up the table.

It was Hurstville City Minotaurs who opened the scoring though through a powerful free kick from Angelo Vagenas. Another fixture, another game with crazy changes of momentum.

Manuel Angelopolous leveled the scores for the home side with a great solo effort in which he split the defense. An effort only to be topped in the fixture by his other goal after the break where he found the top corner after a quality build up.

However, the Minotaurs were the team ahead at the break courtesy of another free kick which was headed in by Keifer Dotti.

But back to Balmain and Angelopoulos’s second was followed by a quick-fire double to Frank Calgano who displayed his strikers’ instincts with both too make it 4-2.

Hurstville City Minotaurs weren’t about to go down without fighting though and Seif Eser managed to score a consolation (with another chance also hitting the post).

So, breathe, pretty crazy weekend of State League Men’s competition and without writing anybody off yet. Looks like it’s a four-horse race for the final two positions in the five.

By Justin Smith (@smiththejustin)