The penultimate weekend of the FNSW League One Men’s competition gave us a league champion and plenty to look forward to in the final weekend of action.
Yes, a Hills United victory and results elsewhere saw them crowned champions.
While next weekends focus will turn to the playoff places.
Match of the Round: St George FC 4-0 Dulwich Hill FC
Surely not? St George FC proved too strong for Dulwich Hill with a 4-0 victory at Rockdale Ilinden Sports Centre.
The result puts them within a point of second placed Bonnyrigg White Eagles with a game to go. They found their groove in the second half of this one with three goals.
Dulwich Hill were the first team to go close to opening the scoring. Daniel Fornito heading just wide from an Adam Semhat cross in just the second minute of play.
It was a flowing start to the fixture with both sides finding their way into the final third in the opening stages. However, it wasn’t long before St George got into their groove.
Harry Jones having their first effort of note just after the clock ticked past 11 minutes. His right footed effort from just outside the area saved by the Dulwich keeper, Conor Quilligan with the ball forward to him.
The pressure was relentless at this point with St George creating another opportunity in the 17th minute. Quilligan with his head denied by the Dulwich Hill shot stopper, the cross coming in from the left.
And it eventually told with an innocuous own goal before the half hour. A Conor Quilligan cross into the back post unfortunately turned home by a retreating Dulwich Hill defender in Dylan Lamour. Evangelo Souris following up with an effort on target soon after.
Jesse Spang having the next chance of note five minutes later, his effort blocked on the goal line after getting past the keeper.
A rare chance coming at the other end in the 43rd minute, Harry Browell teeing up Daniel Fornito who couldn’t find the target with his shot.
St George having the last chance of the half however, Harry Jones unable to slip it past the keeper after Jesse Spang released him.
Where in the first half the hosts were lacking in that final execution, there were no such issues early in the second half.
But first, Jerome Narayan was to deny Troy Danaskos who launched an effort from distance.
The Saints doubling their advantage in the 51st minute. Conor Quilligan winning the ball high up the pitch, finding Anthony Morabito who squared it to Harry Jones for the easy finish at the back post.
Conor Quilligan then grabbing a goal of his own on his second of two quickfire efforts. Finding the top right corner of the net with a lovely finish from outside the area. A stunning goal.
The final goal coming in the 71st minute through Jesse Spang. Spang released by you guessed it, Conor Quilligan with the ball over the top. 4-0 and a decisive victory for the Saints who are within a point of Bonnyrigg White Eagles.
They face Mounties Wanderers in round 30 action next weekend while Dulwich Hill conclude their season against Hakoah FC.
St George FC 4 (Dylan Lamour OG 26’, Harry Jones 51’, Conor Quilligan 55, Jesse Spang 70’)
Dulwich Hill FC 0
Hakoah FC 0 v Hills United FC 2 (Nathan Rayner 44’, Wade Giovenali 92’)
Hills United secured three points and the premiership with a victory over Hakoah FC away from home Saturday evening.
Visiting one of the tougher venues to play at in the competition, they found the back of the net either side of halftime to take an unassailable lead at the top of the competition with a game in hand.
While Hakoah held their visitors for much of the half, it was simply a case of conceding a goal at the wrong time, the contest becoming an uphill battle from there.
A professional performance on the road, hills were able to score at vital times to secure the points. Nathan Rayner opening the score just before the break after some tenacious work from Darcy Ellem.
Before Ellem also set up the second, leading a counter attack which saw Wade Giovenali round the keeper in the dying stages.
Bonnyrigg White Eagles FC 1 (Radovan Pavicevic 85’) v Mounties Wanderers FC 4 (Marko Filipovic 37’, Kuot Maliet 44’ 97’, Matthew Self 88’)
A result with ramifications at either end, Mounties Wanderers shocked Bonnyrigg White Eagles in potentially the shock of the season?
Not done yet, the Wanderers kept their hopes of avoiding a relegation playoff alive with the surprise victory. They took a two-goal lead into the break before adding further two late on. Sitting two points behind Dunbar Rovers, they host St George FC next weekend.
It’s getting a bit nervy for Bonnyrigg White Eagles after what can only be described as a week from hell. Two big losses in the space of four days, they will need to bounce back with a victory next weekend with St George sitting just one point behind them.
It could have been a different story though with Mounties keeper Thomas Sutton making a few crucial saves in the first half.
However it was a former Bonnyrigg player in Kuot Maliet who made a big difference here. Setting up the first for Marko Filipovic before scoring two of his own. Anthony Windsor with the assist for the second goal.
Bonnyrigg did show life in the second period with a Radovan Pavicevic goal with five minutes left but Mounties were able to counter with two of their own, Matthew Self and Maliet the scorers to take it to 4-1.
Dunbar Rovers FC 1 (Samuel Tzanakes 79’) v Inter Lions FC 3 (Oliver Green 27’ 60’, Sam Armson 46’)
Inter Lions kept their winning run going with a 3-1 victory over Dunbar Rovers at Fraser Park, Saturday night.
Continuing their free scoring form, the visitors were simply a class above of their hosts in this one with two first half goals giving them the head start. They turn their attention to Central Coast United next weekend before their cup tie with Metrostars, Tuesday week.
Unfortunately, its another week where Dunbar Rovers haven’t secured their league one status, they proved no match for Inter Lions on the night and will turn their attention to Blacktown Spartans next weekend.
Against a hard working Dunbar Rovers defense, Inter had to wait till the 25th minute to break the deadlock, Guiseppe Tilio delivering an inch perfect cross to Oliver Green to open the scoring.
A lead doubled just before half time in spectacular fashion. Sam Armson scoring from a lazy 40m out with the keeper off his line.
Results not going there way elsewhere, Dunbar came out with renewed vigor but any momentum they had was halted with Ollie Greens second on the hour.
Dunbar grabbing a consolation goal through Samuel Tzanakes late.
Northern Tigers FC 1 (Ahmed Sweedan 46’) v SD Raiders FC 2 (Noah Chianese 29’, Mark Cindric 60’)
Securing their fourth consecutive victory, SD Raiders surprised their hosts with a 2-1 victory over Northern Tigers.
Its a confidence building result for SD Raiders as they state their intentions going forward into next season. Three points at a tonight venue to go-to, they next face Rydalmere Lions.
This one was a quality game and Northern Tigers played their part in the contest pegging the visitors back before conceding late. They finish their season against Bankstown City.
Somehow there was only one goal in this at half time with both teams creating plenty of chances.
The only goal falling the way of the visitors with Noah Chianese opening the score, Sebastian Malfara with the assist.
Changing things up at half time, Northern Tigers restored parity early in the second half through Ahmed Sweden.
However, the visitors took the lead again on the hour through Mark Cindric and were able to hold on despite the game opening up in the last 15 minutes.
Canterbury Bankstown FC 1 (Jairo Torne Fernandez 8’) v Bankstown City FC 0
Canterbury Bankstown secured a narrow victory over Bankstown City at Jensen Park, Saturday night.
A performance to be proud of giving their lack of fit players in the first team squad, the Berries found their goal early in the contest before holding on for the victory. They round out their season with a fixture against Rydalmere Lions next weekend.
It’s a disappointing derby loss for Bankstown City, they round out their season against Northern Tigers next weekend.
The start a coach dreams of, Canterbury Bankstown came out pressing the opposition well while keeping possession.
Getting their reward before ten minutes, Gino Cerasoli getting it to the goal scorer Jairo Torne Fernandez quickly who hit it hard and low past the keeper.
After recovering from the early concession, Bankstown City put in a much improved effort in the second half with the introduction of Nikola Todoroski. But they couldn’t find the back of the net, the game finishing 1-0 to the “hosts”.
Central Coast United FC 2 (Adam Woodbine 81’, Cade Thomson 85’) v Rydalmere Lions FC 1 (Ahmad Taleb 69’)
Good things come to those who wait, Central Coast United claimed their fourth victory of the season with a come from behind effort against Rydalmere Lions.
It’s a result to lift morale for the hosts who last tasted victory back in round 23. They found the net twice in the second half to claim their victory and will see out their season against Inter Lions next weekend.
While Rydalmere Lions will turn their attention to SD Raiders next weekend after a tough run of results.
How good is a late comeback at home?
It looked like this was headed for a Rydalmere victory with a goal falling their way in the 69th minute. Ahmad Taleb the scorer for the visitors.
But the Pirates gave themselves something to smile about, Adam Woodbine and Cade Thomson scoring within the space of five minutes late in the second half.
Blacktown Spartans FC 1 (Dale Howarth 72’) v Macarthur Rams FC 1 (Leandro Guzman55’)
Blacktown Spartans and Macarthur Rams shared the points in a competitive fixture at Blacktown Football Park
A frustrating result for the hosts who once away come away without the three points from a home fixture. They will need to improve on that if they are to compete for the title next season.
Macarthur on the other hand will be happy with their point away form home. They frustrated their visitors and took their chance in the second half to take away a point.
The first half was a rather quiet one in this one with the exception of two moments. One being a Spartans chance with Yuto Mochizuki missing from close range.
The other being a red card which saw the Rams reduced to ten.
That didn’t stop them taking a lead however, Leandro Guzman opening their account on the counter.
Spartans only able to break through a low block once from that point. Dale Howarth scoring from a set piece with 20 minutes remaining.
Spartans finish their season against Dunbar Rovers next weekend, while Macarthur host Canterbury Bankstown.
By Justin Smith