Breath out. After an intense round ten weekend of action in the Football NSW League One Men’s competition, it’s important to do just that as we’re left wanting more.
In our pick of the games, Northern Tigers picked up a crucial win against Mounties Wanderers. While elsewhere, Western Sydney Wanderers, Central Coast Mariners, NWS Spirit and St George City all secured consecutive wins.
Mounties Wanderers FC 0 v Northern Tigers FC 1 (Kawaguchi 31’)
Northern Tigers returned to their winning ways with a close fought victory over Mounties Wanderers at Rydalmere Park.
In a game where they showed that little bit more quality in the front third, Hiyori Kawaguchi opened the scores half an hour into the fixture, a goal which would prove decisive by the full time whistle.
For Mounties, that lack finishing touch proved the difference with the hosts creating less chances in a tense contest, they’ll look to bounce back next weekend against NWS Spirit.
Indeed, it was the hosts who had the first chance of the match, Asel Dehsabzi going oh so close with a long range effort five minutes in, his shot going just over the target.
However, it was Northern Tigers who were looking the more threatening in the opening half hour, with Ally Brown having the first of a succession of shots on ten minutes which eventually resulted in a goal.
Twenty minutes in, Mounties Wanderers had their chance to put some pressure on the Tigers defense, but they could only manage a long-range effort from Bruno Pivato to show for that pressure.
The scoring was opened at the other end though, Hiyori Kawaguchi popping up to score his fourth goal of the season on the half hour. Kawaguchi getting on the end of a Bailey Rule cross from the right at the back post, finishing with his right foot.
After the break, the pattern of the fixture changed with the Mounties having their fair share of field position after the break. Though, much like the first half, they struggled to turn it into meaningful chances during the third quarter of the match.
That changed however in the final twenty minutes or so with Luke Kraljevic, Brad Bartels and Anthony Windsor all having chances. Bartels with perhaps the pick of them with a shot in the 69th minute before a header went close with minutes remaining.
While at the other end, Ally Brown hit the outside of the post minutes into the second half in their pick of the second half chances before Ollie Wiggin, Lachlan Lloyd and Bailey Rule popped up with attempts of their own.
Northern Tigers will return home to play Bonnyrigg White Eagles next weekend. While Mounties Wanderers face a crucial clash against NWS Spirit.
We’d also like to wish Rhys Williams the best with his surgery and recovery for a fractured cheek.
NWS Spirit FC 4 (Bozanic 18’, Johns 34’, Konestabo 52’, Odakura 57’) v Hills United FC 0
Going from strength to strength, NWS Spirit secured their fourth straight victory in all competitions defeating Hills United, Saturday evening.
The Spirit wasted no time in creating their first chance, Geoffry Lino galloping free of the defense inside a minute before cutting onto his right and shooting towards the near bottom corner which was saved.
While Michael Konestabo went close eight minutes in, finding the post with his effort from a similar position.
The game was certainly an open one early and Hills were next to have a chance. With Andre Takimi having a shot blocked before Oliver Kovarik’s shot dribbled wide.
Spirit though were looking the more dangerous and they were rewarded eighteen minutes into the contest courtesy of a Louis Bozanic goal. Bozanic playing a one two with Richie Darko to his right before tapping home from close range. Darko showing good awareness to find Bozanic’s run into the box.
While Hills United had their best two chances in the fixture in the same play soon after. Andre Takimi slipping in Cameron Philp for a chance, Philp making sure Christopher Marques in the Spirit net was awake with a low shot. Marques then with another good save seconds later as Takimi with his effort denied by the right foot of Marques to complete a superb double save.
But a second goal before the break seemed inevitable at the other end and it came in spectacular fashion. Dominic Johns producing something out of the top draw with his right footed strike hitting the underside of the crossbar before bouncing into the net (is their a more satisfying site than that?).
Hills continued to search for a response though and Kelshaw nearly provided their first hitting the crossbar soon after the second goal.
Where the first half provided a back-and-forth contest, the second half was more one-sided with the Spirit adding a further two while not conceding much in terms of chances at the other end.
The first coming seven minutes into the second half through Konestabo who took a one touch finish from the edge of the area after the ball was played across the face from the left side. Konestabo finishing into the bottom left corner.
Before Kota Odakura popped up with a rare open play goal after Dominic Johns teed him up outside the area. Odakura with plenty of time placing his shot past the keeper before the hour mark.
Hills United face the tough task of hosting St George City next weekend while NWS Spirit face a crucial clash with Mounties Wanderers.
Western Sydney Wanderers FC 3 (Pelekanos 10’, Triantis 80’, Rose 83’) v St George FC 2 (Morabito 11’ 28’)
Western Sydney Wanderers produced a late comeback to survive a scare as they eventually overcame St George FC at a foggy Wanderers Football Park.
Two goals in the last ten minutes from Nectarios Triantis and Connor Rose were complimented by an early captain’s goal to Dean Pelekanos. While St George FC scored twice in the first half through Anthony Morabito who picked up a brace.
It was the visitors who started the more positive of the two sides, the Saints putting the Wanderers under significant pressure in the early stages. But against a side full of confidence, there was always a risk of them striking at the other end.
Dean Pelekanos opening the Wanderers account with a finish from the edge of the area after George Antonis cut it back from the right byline, his shot potentially taking a deflection on its way in past Andrew Di Blasio in the Saints net.
Harsh on the visitors? They would’ve thought so and they produced the perfect response going straight up the other end to score their first. Anthony Morabito finishing after Harry Jones came up with a silky assist cutting it back to him.
It was a high tempo end to end start as Connor Rose tried his luck for the hosts on the quarter hour, his shot narrowly missing the target.
As much as Wanderers were creating the chances, they were looking a bit susceptible at the back. And they were punished before the half hour. Anthony Morabito grabbing the second of his brace after the visitors mounted some pressure of their own. Morabito pouncing on a Warshawsky mistake with a calm collected finish.
The pressure continued at the other end though as Connor Rose, George Antonis and Alex Badolato all having chances before the half time break after conceding.
With the resumption, the game continued in the same fashion as the first half concluded with the Wanderers piling on pressure while the visitors held firm. Angus Chance the visitors best second half chance when he put a free kick put over the bar.
However, the goals eventually came for the hosts, the first in the 80th minute through Nectarios Triantis who netted a commanding header from a corner on the right drawing the Wanderers level with ten to go.
Before Connor Rose both won and converted a penalty two minutes later after a beautifully weighted Daniel Wilmering ball in behind, Rose converting on the second attempt after a terrific penalty save from Di Basio.
Despite responding well and putting some pressure on the hosts, the Saints couldn’t recover, they play Central Coast Mariners at home next weekend. While Western Sydney Wanderers host their driveway counterparts in round eleven action.
Hakoah FC 2 (Cox 27’, 85’) v Blacktown Spartans FC 2 (Gonzalez 19’, Lamberton 49’)
Hakoah FC came from behind twice to share the spoils with Blacktown Spartans in a mid-table battle in Eastgardens.
The Spartans took the lead twice (once in each half) courtesy of goals to Emmanuel Gonzalez and Hamish Lamberton but were unable to hold out against the hosts who found the net twice through Dominic Cox.
In terms of chances, it was the hosts who had them early going close on a few occasions in the first fifteen minutes.
But it was the visitors to open the scoring, Mason Ireland setting in motion an endeavor forward which saw him find Hamish Lamberton who set up strike partner Emmanuel Gonzalez for the opener just before the twentieth minute.
Still, there was pressure put on the Spartans defense as the first half ticked on as they seemed to be happy to let the hosts have possession in non-dangerous areas.
That being said, they would have down well to deny Dominic Cox the equalizer in the 27th minute. Cox with a dipping long range effort which potentially caught the keeper by surprise to bring things level. Midfield partner Yianni Spyrakis with the assist.
Spyrakis was unable to return the favour a few minutes later, heading over from a Dominic Cox corner on the right. Before Anthony Costa couldn’t turn the ball home right with the last kick before the half time whistle after Jordan Koton cut it back to him, a desperate Alex Gollan clearance on the goal line denying the hosts.
Despite creating the more chances, the hosts found themselves behind once again after the break. Hamish Lamberton grabbing the visitors second goal of the fixture. Lamberton getting on the end of a Billy Patramanis through ball from the back before providing a classy finish from inside the area.
Once again, the hosts found themselves needing a goal to get back into it and the game returned to its familiar pattern with Spartans looking to counter. Speaking of, Manni Gonzalez notched up another shot on target in the 68th minute forcing Hugh Brown into a save.
With the stakes being so high in this one, Hakoah began to show more desperation as the minutes ticked down and they found an equalizer with five minutes left. A long range Steven Sohn free kick finding Dominic Cox in the area who made no mistake from close range.
Blacktown Spartans face two games in the Blacktown Football Park vicinity hosting a cup game against Castle Hill before taking on Western Sydney Wanderers next Saturday. While Hakoah host Marconi in the cup before travelling to Ernie Smith in round eleven action.
Bonnyrigg White Eagles FC 1 (Kuipers 36’) v St George City 2 (Kalergou 75’, Mitry 84’)
St George City came from a goal down to clip the wings of the Bonnyrigg White Eagles at Bonnyrigg Sports Club, Saturday night.
Goals to Nicholas Kalergou and substitute Paolo Mitry proved enough for the visitors to overcome a Jack Kuipers first half goal.
The visitors were the side to start the better notching up the first two shots on target of the game. Christopher Arditti with the first on four minutes before Nathan Roberts had an effort one-on-one with the keeper saved by Michael Figueira.
While Jack Kuipers nearly did it all himself on the quarter hour, taking the ball from near halfway into the box before forcing Mackenzie Syron to make a save his right, the follow up ball across from Kuipers cleared away.
Peterson following those chances up with potentially their best chance before the goal with a half volley inside the area hooked wide of the goal.
Speaking of the goal, it came from Jack Kuipers who picked up a ball 20-25 yards out before unleashing a left footed effort which took a heavy deflection before sailing into the top right corner of the net on thirty-five minutes.
With the onus now on the visitors, they went close just before the break, a header from a central position going just wide of the post.
The half time break thankfully didn’t affect the tempo of this match with Marie Gauthier the first to have a clear-cut chance twenty minutes into the second half, in fact he had two chances in quick succession.
The goal came despite the hosts pressure though, St George City equalizing with just over fifteen minutes left and the scorer didn’t know too much about it. Tarik Ercan having a shot from inside the area after a set piece, which was turned in by Nicholas Kalergou.
And the turnaround was complete ten minutes later with City grabbing their second through a Paulo Mitry goal after a Troy Danaskos cross into the area was cleared unconvincingly, Mitry with a first time finish which took a touch off the post on its way in.
In response, Bonnyrigg’s best chance to equalize came just inside regulation, an Aaron Peterson ball across the six yard box unable to be turned in.
St George City have a cup game at home against Dulwich Hill before taking on Hills United next weekend. While Bonnyrigg White Eagles host Bankstown City in the cup Tuesday night before traveling to North Turramurra next weekend.
Central Coast Mariners FC 4 (Khoury 3‘, Bayliss 36‘ 63‘, Kuol 80’) v SD Raiders FC 0
Central Coast Mariners secured their third straight win with victory over SD Raiders in the sole Sunday fixture of the weekend.
And once again it was on the back of a lethal attacking performance which saw Jackson Khoury, Lachlan Bayliss and Teng Kuol all find the net.
While it was a forgettable for the visitors, they will be looking to dust themselves off before next weekend’s fixture with Hakoah.
Fresh off a couple of victories, the Mariners didn’t take long to open the scoring. A sharp counterattack seeing Lachlan Bayliss take the ball forward and have a shot which could only be parried into the path of Jackson Khoury who finished from close range.
The Mariners were looking ominous in the front third early with a couple of half chances following. While Franco Maya had the Raiders first shot of note seventeen minutes in. A powerful left footed drive forcing Mariner’s keeper Patrick Beach into a good diving stop to deny him.
Goran Ljuboja’s side had played their way into the fixture by this point as they were able to control the tempo of the game a little more. With Mark Cindric having another shot which drew a save on thirty-five minutes.
In saying that, the game was very open, and the Mariners were in no mood to let mistakes go unpunished. Lachlan Bayliss justifying the feature earlier this week grabbing his seventh of the season after Jordan Segreto played a role in the buildup down the right.
It was very much the same after the break for the Mariners who continued to knock on the door of their opponents. Jackson Khoury perhaps going closest with a free-kick which was deflected by the wall.
Andrew Christiansen’s side were looking rampant in attack, and they won a penalty a quarter of an hour into the second period. Teng Kuol brought down inside the area after catching the Raiders out at the back. Lachlan Bayliss stepping up to score his 8th goal of the season sending the keeper the wrong way.
And the victory was wrapped up with just ten minutes remaining courtesy of a fourth goal after Mark Cindric saw red a few minutes before. Teng Kuol getting a deserved goal after his last two contributions off the bench, Kuol with a composed finish from inside the area after a cross from the left wing.
As mentioned earlier, SD Raiders return home for their clash with Hakoah next weekend while Central Coast Mariners face St George FC at Rockdale Ilinden Sports Centre.
By FNSW League One Men’s writer Justin Smith