Round 5 Review – NPL 3 NSW Men’s


We delve deep into all the highlights from around the grounds in what was another glorious weekend of NPL 3 football.

Another entertaining set of fixtures kept us occupied in the latest round of the NPL 3 Men’s competition.

Stanmore Hawks and Bankstown City were involved in a five goal thriller; Inter Lions edged out Sydney Uni by the odd goal; Rydalmere maintained their perfect record with a win against Central Coast; Canterbury Bankstown recorded their fourth straight win at home to Dunbar; Bankstown United and Dulwich Hill endured a stalemate while Gladesville Ryde Magic enjoyed a routine win over Macarthur Rams.

Stanmore Hawks FC – Bankstown City FC 2-3

Stanmore Hawks fell to a 3-2 defeat against Bankstown City at Arlington Oval on Saturday night.

It was Stanmore who broke the deadlock with a bomb of a free kick from Conor Quilligan.

However, the home side went down a man shortly after when centre back Ollie Stickland was dismissed for a last-ditch challenge.

Ante Tomic compounded the Hawks’ woes when he stepped up to convert the resulting free kick.

The reigning 2019 Premiers regained their lead after the interval through another peach of a free kick, this time from the boot of Gabriel Lopez.

Once again Bankstown drew level as Tomic turned provider for Jonathan Grozdanovski as his cross found his teammate in space at the back post.

The visitors then went on to score the winning goal in the final five minutes of the match through Grozdanovski after he slotted the ball past Stanmore’s goalkeeper after being played in by Nikola Todoroski.

The three points puts Bankstown on nine points as they leapfrog Dunbar into 4th spot on the league ladder while the Hawks drop down one position into 3rd with 10 points to their name.

Stanmore will be hoping to return to winning ways when they meet Dunbar next round whilst Bankstown will be going in search of back-to-back wins when they host Magic next Sunday.

Inter Lions FC – Sydney University SFC 1-0

Inter Lions recorded a 1-0 victory against Sydney University at Majors Bay Reserve on Saturday night.

Home comfort seems to be the way to go for Inter as they secured their second win at their new ground.

The hosts were compact in defense and were able to deal with a barrage of Uni attacks throughout the first half.

At the other end of the pitch, Nathan Rayner proved to be a headache for the visitors’ defence while Zac Ribeiro also mustered up several quality chances.

Nico Paras proved to be Inter’s dangerman in the second half and it was his goal in the 75th minute that proved to be the match winner.

A quick free kick caught the opposition off guard and was enough to ensure that all three points went the way of the home side.

The win sees Inter rise into 7th on the league ladder with seven points while Uni remain rooted to the bottom of the table.

Inter’s next assignment is an away fixture at Central Coast United while Uni return to Camperdown to host the Berries.

Rydalmere Lions FC – Central Coast United FC 3-1

Rydalmere’s reign at the top of the table continues after they posted a 3-1 win against Central Coast United at Rydalmere Park on Saturday night.

The Lions first goal of the evening arrived from Matt West after he put the finishing touches on Gurang Awac’s cross.

The hosts doubled their lead on the stroke of halftime, this time via target man Scott Tonkin who slotted home Ali Mckie’s ball into the box.

Central Coast were reduced to 10 men shortly after the break when Jordan Lennon’s tackle on Awac was deemed worthy of a red card.

Going down a man seemed to have had the opposite effect on the Pirates as they pulled one back through a spectacular effort from Tommy Lyons.

A Jake Chidiac goal shortly after made sure of the three points for Gavin Rae’s men as they registered their fifth consecutive victory.

Special mention must go to the visitors who put in a strong performance despite fielding their youngest ever first grade squad.

The defeat means the Pirates remain in 11th position with three points whilst Rydalmere stay top of the table with 15 points.

The Pirates entertain Inter at Pluim Park next Saturday while the Lions visit Arlington Oval to take on Dully.

Canterbury Bankstown FC – Dunbar Rovers FC 3-2

Canterbury Bankstown registered their fourth consecutive victory on Saturday night as they triumphed 3-2 against Dunbar Rovers at the Crest Athletic Centre.

It was Dunbar who struck first in this fixture from the spot after Luiz Lobo converted the penalty after he was brought down in the box.

Berries levelled the scoring on 35 minutes from a Justin Ivanovic own goal after Nikita Andricopoulos’ cross into the box deflected off the defender’s chest before finding its way into the back of the net.

Both sides entered the sheds with the score locked at one-a-piece with the visitors having felt like they could already of have had two or three to their name.

It did not take long for them to regain their advantage with Lobo getting on the scoresheet once again in the 55th minute when he capped off a slick counter attacking move with an unstoppable effort from outside the box.

However, it was only a matter of minutes before the home side restored parity after Andrija Mandic scored from the penalty spot after a foul on Gino Cerasoli.

The decisive goal arrived in the final quarter from Andre Guzman after he followed up on Mandic’s strike which was spilled by Rovers’ shot stopper Luke Del Vecchio.

The three points sees the Berries overtake Stanmore into 2nd position on the ladder while Dunbar drop to 5th, switching places with Bankstown City.

Canterbury Bankstown will be on the road next weekend when they visit Uni while Dunbar welcome Stanmore to Heffron Park.

Bankstown United FC – Dulwich Hill FC 2-2

Bankstown United and Dulwich Hill could not be split with 2-2 the full-time score at Jensen Park on Saturday night.

It was Bankstown who drew first blood in this contest when they opened the scoring in the 3rd minute thanks to a Mitch Cross penalty.

The hosts threatened again and were unlucky not to double their lead with Kallie Bangura and Mitch Edmunds failing to capitalise on their chances.

Dully made them pay on the half hour mark when Daniel Fornito headed home a corner to restore parity for his side.

It was the home side who regained the lead after the interval, this time via Bangura after he capped off a well worked play with a pinpoint finish.

However, once again Dully rained on Bankstown’s parade as Aaron Pessego popped up with the equaliser as he headed in a corner at the far post.

Both sides have now secured back-to-back draws in their respective fixtures and will be desperate to take all three points from their next outings.

Bankstown take on the Rams in Macarthur next Saturday while Dully have a meeting with league leaders Rydalmere at Arlington Oval.

Gladesville Ryde Magic – Macarthur Rams FC 3-0

Gladesville Ryde Magic enjoyed a routine 3-0 victory against Macarthur Rams on Saturday night.

A diving header from Aaron Khan opened the scoring for Magic and gave them a 1-0 lead as they headed into the sheds.

Chris Gaitatzis doubled the home side’s lead after he slotted the ball into the net before Genki Kohyama made sure of the points when he weighed in with the third goal of the contest.

Magic are now undefeated in the last three rounds and move up into 6th on the ladder with seven points.

They travel to Jensen Park next Sunday to face off against Bankstown City.

The defeat sees the Rams remain in 10th position with 3 points to their name.

Next up for Macarthur is a home fixture against Bankstown United.


-By NPL 3 NSW Men’s Chief Writer Samuel Greco Schwartz (Twitter handle: @SamuelGS97)