Round 16 Review – League Two Men’s

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A week of contrasting scoreline with both tight encounters and big wins saw many of the top sides picked up strong victories to power along in Round 16 to start the second half of the 2024 Football NSW League Two Men’s season.

The Match of the Round this week saw Mounties Wanderers FC pick up a third-straight win after a big away success over Granville Rage.


Friday, 24th May 2024

Match of the Round: Granville Rage 1-3 Mounties Wanderers

Mounties Wanderers FC went a fifth match unbeaten and completed the league double over Granville Rage after a 3-1 away success, which kept them in touch with the top sides to start the second half of the season.

Mounties took the early lead in spectacular fashion after a tense start to the match in the 9th minute when Brima Kamara received the ball just inside his own half; he spotted Rage goalkeeper Branko Vidakovic off his line and launched an audacious shot on goal from halfway, which looped over the keeper and into the back of the net to make the early scoreline read 1-0 to Mounties.

The Rage struck straight back, however, in the 17th minute following a goal kick, which resulted in the Rage pressure winning the ball up the field; a precise pass was played to Nikola Todoroski up front, who controlled the ball well and slotted it into the back of the net to level the contest at 1-1.

The next chance came in the 28th minute when a mis-placed cross ended up needing to be saved by Vidakovic at the far-right post, while one minute later Mounties’ Yuki Kanai got in behind down the left and fired a strong shot at the near post, which was saved by Vidakovic.

Mounties held most of the ball in the first half but were nullified by a resolute Rage defence in a first half which was scarce of chances for either side – Mounties could not make their possession count and the Rage could not hit back on the counter.

The final two shots of the half came from Mounties when Kanai took a shot on from a free-kick from 25 yards which went wide of the right post, before Raymond Coletta hit the side-netting from a corner – the two teams went into half-time level at 1-1.

Mounties launched a few dangerous balls into the box to start the second half and were denied a big chance in the 48th minute when Welkson Souza Bispo put in a crucial challenge to stop a clear shot on goal from Mounties.

The match changed complexion in the 55th minute, however, when the referee adjudged Rage’s Michael Sada to have handled the ball in the box after it had been flicked up into his arms and awarded Mounties a penalty, much to the disagreement of the Rage players and staff, which could be heard.

Kanai stepped up and made no mistake from the spot after he rolled the ball into the left side of the goal with Vidakovic diving the other way to restore Mounties one-goal advantage at 2-1.

Mounties dominated the second half from that point with the next six chances in the match – these included shots from Dany Ghetti, Anthony Vastag, and a big chance for Kanai which was saved by Vidakovic before the ball was cleared off the line by the Rage defence in the 64th minute.

Bispo continued to be strong in defence for the Rage as he stopped more dangerous Mounties attacks, while the first shot in the second half for the Rage came in the 70th minute when Timothy Trainor shot an effort wide left following a corner.

The Mounties defence stood up late to deny the Rage opportunities to get into the box and used their ball-winning abilities to hit the Rage on the counter late.

Mounties had the chance to seal the result in the 82nd minute when Kanai got in behind after some nifty footwork got him past Jamie Nicolaou; Kanai was through on goal before the referee adjudged that Nicolaou had fouled him and awarded Mounties another penalty.

Kanai stepped up and launched the penalty attempt into the left-side of the goal again, this time past the outstretched Vidakovic, for his 13th goal of the season to give Mounties a 3-1 lead late.

The Rage had a big chance to pull a goal back in the 89th minute when Todoroski shot at the near-right post, which was saved by Mounties, before he headed wide seconds later after a ball was delivered in from the left.

Granville had two big penalty shouts turned down by the referee in the second half, which frustrated both the players and the staff, and that frustration was apparent after the full-time whistle had blown.

Mounties picked up a 3-1 away victory and completed the league double over the Rage after a powerful performance.

The loss for the Rage dropped them from 10th to 11th on the ladder and was their third-straight loss, while the win for Mounties was their third-straight and kept them in 4th but ensured they followed suite with the teams around them with a big win in Round 16.

Granville Rage will hope to put the disappointment of this loss behind them as they look to reset and take on last-placed Gladesville Ryde Magic in Round 17 at home, while Mounties Wanderers FC will look to continue their strong run of form in a Round 14 catch-up match at home to 14th-placed Sydney University SFC at Cook Park on Tuesday, 28th May at 8pm, and hope to  keep up with the top sides when they host 8th-placed Prospect United SC in Round 17.

Granville Rage 1 (Nikola Todoroski 17’)

Mounties Wanderers FC 3 (Brima Kamara 9’; Yuki Kanai 56’ pen, 84’ pen)


Central Coast United FC 0-1 Inner West Hawks FC

A lone goal helped Inner West Hawks FC pick up their first win in three weeks in what was a crucial clash against Central Coast United FC.

The Hawks started the match strongly after they held good possession and threatened the Pirates’ defence and were rewarded in the 18th minute when Jacob Palamidas played a ball in behind down the left to Peter Yannopoulos, who used his speed to get in behind the Pirates defence and slotted the ball in at the near-left post with his left foot to give the Hawks an early 1-0 lead.

The Hawks continued to attack in the first half with a few good chances for Takuma Hirano but were unable to find another goal in the first half with the score at 1-0 at the break.

In the second half, the Hawks continued to hold the ball and brought on a few extra defenders late to see out the match in a game where they had 19 shots to six.

Hawks’ midfielders Angelo Pezzano and Palamidas made some crucial interceptions late in the match to deny the Pirates, while the Hawks defence of Tomohiro Ishii, Christopher Phillips, captain Sidhya Malhotra and Marcus Apostolakis helped the Hawks see out a big 1-0 away win.

The loss for the Pirates meant they dropped from 5th to 6th on the ladder, seven points behind 4th-placed Mounties Wanderers FC, while the crucial win for the Hawks saw them overtake the Pirates on the ladder by one point as they looked to keep up with the top four.

Central Coast United FC will hope to claim a big scalp and get back to winning ways when they travel to take on 2nd-placed Bankstown United FC, while Inner West Hawks FC have a big Round 14 catch-up match away to 7th-placed Camden Tigers FC on Tuesday, 28th May before they host 14th-placed Sydney University SFC in Round 17.

Central Coast United FC 0

Inner West Hawks FC 1 (Peter Yannopoulos 18’)


Saturday, 25th May 2024

Gladesville Ryde Magic 0-6 South Coast Flame FC

South Coast Flame FC started the second half of the season with a bang after they hit Gladesville Ryde Magic for six in a big win away from home, with a hat-trick hero, and completed a perfect league double over the Magic with no goals conceded in either head-to-head match.

The Flame started the match strongly and opened the scoring in the 5th minute when Samuel Alston found Mitchell Turner, who ran onto the ball and placed the ball beyond Magic goalkeeper Brendan Ahmed to give the Flame an early 1-0 lead.

The Flame doubled their lead in the 18th minute when a flick-on from Matthew Mazevski sent Turned in behind down the right – he squared the ball to Michael Trajkovski, who continued his strong scoring season after he tapped the ball in at the far post to make the score 2-0.

The Flame had the next two chances in the match, while a big chance for the Magic came in the 39th minute when Aram Tayebi squared a ball to Chris Gaitatzis in the middle from the left, but the latter could not turn the ball towards goal.

Less than one minute later, the Flame attacked and a ball over the top found Trajkovski once more, who lifted the ball over Ahmed to give the Flame a third goal before half-time.

The Magic had an early chance in the second half when Gaitatzis had a header from inside the box which went straight into the arms of Flame goalkeeper, Rocco Zinnato.

Trajkovski scored his 16th goal of the season and completed his hat-trick in the 54th minute after he was fouled in the box and earned a penalty, which he dispatched to give the Flame a 4-0 lead.

The two sides traded a shot each from there until the 63rd minute, when the Flame’s Yianni Perkatis fired a shot from 35 yards which hit the underside of the crossbar and rebounded into the path of Ahmed.

The Flame had the next few chances in the match through Namito Tsuchiya, Trajkovski and Perkatis, and they added a fifth goal in the 85th minute when Kyden Harb played a ball to substitute Alexander Alston, who placed the ball into the back of the net for the Flame.

In the 90th minute, the Flame finished their attacking display, in a match where they had 23 shots, in style with a sixth goal when Harb got on the end of a rebound and slotted the ball home to give the Flame a big 6-0 away win.

The loss for the Magic kept them in last place, one point off 14th-placed Sydney University SFC, while the win for the Flame ensured they kept up with the top sides as they stayed in 3rd place, one point behind 2nd-placed Bankstown United FC.

Gladesville Ryde Magic will hope to end their 10-match losing streak when they travel to face 11th-placed Granville Rage in Round 17, while the Flame will hope to continue to put pressure on the top two when they travel to face 10th-placed Parramatta FC.

Gladesville Ryde Magic 0

South Coast Flame FC 6 (Mitchell Turner 5’; Michael Trajkovski 18’, 40’, 55’; Alexander Alston 85’; Jyden Harb 90’)


Hawkesbury City FC 1-0 Sydney University SFC

Hawkesbury City FC responded to back-to-back losses with a tight 1-0 home win with ten men over Sydney University SFC in what was their third match in the space of seven days.

University started with energy and caught Hawkesbury a bit flat early and both teams’ goalkeepers made two good saves early – University goalkeeper Jasper Sarkies made a good save onto the post off a Stuart Gosling shot, before another Hawkesbury shot was cleared off the line.

The hosts took the lead in the 32nd minute when Harry Drew put in a nice pass to Duncan Stewart, who finished off his chance to give the Hawks a 1-0 lead.

At the other end, University smashed a driven shot off the inside of the post and had another shot which went just wide, as Hawkesbury took a 1-0 lead into the break.

A frantic second half saw many free-kicks, where University looked dangerous, and tackles, while 18-year-old Hawkesbury goalkeeper Jai Whitton kept University out.

Two late yellow cards for Hawkesbury substitute Alexander Murrell saw him sent off in the 86th minute, but Hawkesbury held on for a tough 1-0 win.

The win for the Hawks kept them in 12th place but put them within one win of 9th, while the loss for University kept them in 14th, one point ahead of last-placed Gladesville Ryde Magic.

Hawkesbury City FC will hope to make the most of a restful week as they have their bye in Round 17, while Sydney University SFC will hope to cause an upset when they travel to face 5th-placed Inner West Hawks FC in Round 17.

Hawkesbury City FC 1 (Duncan Stewart 32’; Alexander Murrell 86’ red card)

Sydney University SFC 0


Fraser Park FC 5-1 Parramatta FC

Fraser Park FC went a third match unbeaten after they came from behind to dispatch of Parramatta FC 5-1 at home.

Parramatta came out firing and opened the scoring in the 2nd minute through Jordan Parfait following some good movement off the ball as they caught Fraser Park cold early.

From there, Fraser Park looked to control the midfield battle, winning balls, and looking to attack quickly with the ball.

Shu Torihara and Hayato Sadamori combined well in midfield and that created chances for the hosts.

They responded to their early deficit in the 13th minute through David Ustimenko, who finished well to level the match at 1-1.

Just four minutes later, Alexander Nicolosi scored to give Fraser Park the lead in the match, and they took that lead into half-time.

Just four minutes after the break, Ustimenko grabbed a double for his 6th goal of the season as Fraser Park took a 3-1 lead early in the second half.

Nicolosi also grabbed a double in the 71st minute for his 7th goal of the season as Fraser Park ensured the win late.

They finished off the scoring in the 78th minute through substitute Samuel Jackson, who ensured Fraser Park put in a five-star performance on their way to a big 5-1 home win over Parramatta.

The win for Fraser Park moved them to within four points on 9th place with a match in hand, while the loss for Parramatta saw them unable to grab back-to-back wins as they stayed in 10th.

Fraser Park will hope to continue their good run of form when they host 9th-placed Hurstville FC next week, while Parramatta will hope to put in a better performance when they host 3rd-placed South Coast Flame FC.

Fraser Park FC 5 (David Ustimenko 13’, 49’ pen; Alexander Nicolosi 17’, 71’; Samuel Jackson 78’)

Parramatta FC 1 (Jordan Parfait 2’)


Hurstville FC 0-1 Newcastle Jets

Late, late drama saw the ladder-leading, unbeaten Newcastle Jets squeeze home with a tight 1-0 away win over Hurstville FC, who put in a big effort but fell late.

Both teams came out fast and a good battled brewed in the first ten minutes of the match, with Newcastle holding the ball and Hurstville hitting them on transition.

Hurstville’s best chance of the half came in the 20th minute when Daniel Maras slipped Andre Guzman in behind, who crossed the ball to Jesse Gagro, but the latter was unable to finish from close range.

A very tight first half saw a very disciplined and well-structured Hurstville keep the Jets at bay, who had a few chances but were unable to find a way through the Hurstville backline in the first half.

In the second half, the Jets had more chances but could not finish them off as they looked for another big win, while Hurstville forced the Jets into turnovers.

Jesse Gagro and Jacob Botic had good chances for Hurstville in transition but were unable to finish, while Newcastle almost got through Hurstville a few times, but good defending denied them.

With the match headed for a draw late, Jets Head Coach Damian Zane made three substitutions in the final ten minutes of regulation time, including the introduction of Amos Okumu.

In the fourth minute of stoppage time, a long ball into the box was not cleared by Hurstville and the ball fell to Okumu, who found the winner from close range to give Newcastle the late 1-0 win in a season where they remained unbeaten.

Ben Van Dorsen returned from national team camp and played a big part in the win for the Jets, as did Christian Bracco, as the Jets completed the league double over Hurstville.

The loss for Hurstville was their third from their past four matches and saw them stay in 9th-place, while the win for the Jets saw them stay five points clear at the top of the table as their unbeaten season continued, following their 15th match of the season.

Hurstville will hope to get back to form when they travel to face 13th-placed Fraser Park FC next week, while the Newcastle Jets will hope to continue their unbeaten season when they travel to face 7th-placed Camden Tigers FC next week.

Hurstville FC 0

Newcastle Jets 1 (Amos Okumu 90+4’)


Bankstown United FC 2-1 Prospect United SC

Bankstown United FC came from behind and picked up a big 2-1 home win over a ten-man Prospect United SC to give them the perfect start to the second half of the season.

Bankstown had four headed chances in the first 20 minutes of the match through Marie Gauthier and Mitchell Cross which were either headed wide or saved by Prospect goalkeeper Connor Gilbert as they signalled their intent early at home.

Prospect settled from there and took the lead in the 22nd minute through Anthony Idehen, who took on two Bankstown players in the box and slotted the ball into the bottom-right corner for his 10th goal of the season to give Prospect a 1-0 lead.

The half was even from there, but Gilbert pulled off four big saved for Prospect, before Bankstown scored in the 42nd minute through Jovan Blagojevic after he found space in the box and fired his shot home to level the match at 1-1 at half-time.

In the second half, the match was even with chances for both sides but the Bankstown front three threatened the Prospect backline with their strength and power.

Bankstown took the lead for the first time in the match in the 66th minute when a shot from Blagojevic from 25 yards was saved onto the crossbar by Gilbert, but Cross reacted quickly from the rebound from six yards out and slotted home his 17th goal of the season to give Bankstown a 2-1 lead.

Five minutes later, Prospect’s best chance of the second half saw Jahnbek Bulut take on two players in the Bankstown box and attempted a shot on goal, but the Bankstown defence shut him down as a penalty shout was waved away.

Prospect was reduced to ten men in the 79th minute when Blake Mottram was sent off for a second yellow card as Bankstown saw out a big home win, 2-1.

The win for Bankstown was their first in three weeks and kept them in 2nd place, five points behind the league-leading Newcastle Jets and one point ahead of 3rd-placed South Coast Flame FC, while the loss for Prospect kept them in 8th.

Bankstown will hope to continue to put the pressure on near the top of the table when they host 6th-placed Central Coast United FC next week, while Prospect will hope to respond to back-to-back losses when they travel to face 4th-placed Mounties Wanderers FC in Round 17.

Bankstown United FC 2 (Jovan Blagojevic 42’; Mitchell Cross 66’)

Prospect United SC 1 (Anthony Idehen 22’; Blake Mottram 79’ red card)


Camden Tigers FC had their bye this week and stayed in 7th place, while they have a Round 14 catch-up match at home to 5th-placed Inner West Hawks FC on Tuesday, 28th May at 7:30pm at Ron Dine Memorial Reserve – Carbiz Stadium.


By Football New South Wales League Two Men’s Reporter, Dylan Costa (@_dylancosta)