Round 17 Review – League Two Men’s

a man holding a football ball

Wet weather played its part amid some big results at both ends of the table in Round 17 of the 2024 Football NSW League Two Men’s season.

The Match of the Round this week saw Inner West Hawks FC continue their good form in a formidable performance against Sydney University SFC.


Saturday, 1st June 2024

Match of the Round: Inner West Hawks FC 4-0 Sydney University SFC

Inner West Hawks FC brought their A-game in the torrential rain in a big 4-0 home win over Sydney University SFC.

The hosts started the match perfectly when, in the 7th minute, Peter Yannopoulos received the ball on halfway; he took a touch, saw University goalkeeper, Jasper Sarkies, slightly off his line and launched an audacious attempt from about 45 yards towards goal.

The ball found the back of the net, over Sarkies, as Yannopoulos’ screamer put the Hawks 1-0 ahead early in the match.

University had the next three shots in the match – first, Jethro Thornton hit a free-kick from 20 yards out just wide of the right post, then University had a shot deflected wide following a corner, before they had a shot saved at the near post by Inner West goalkeeper, Gene Marantos.

The Hawks fired up after that through Yannopoulos, who fired a shot at goal which went over the crossbar as the hosts look to break out of the rhythm of the match, which was University having good spells of possession.

The Hawks pressed in the 29th minute and won the ball high up the field – the ball was played out wide right to Tomohiro Ishii, who put a low cross into the middle of the University box, where the ball evaded all the University defenders, and Yannopoulos snuck in and finished off the chance to double the hosts’ lead.

The half pietered out from there, with a shot from Yannopoulos straight at Sarkies, a free-kick attempt from Thornton which went over the bar the highlights for the rest of the half in the rain, as the Hawks led 2-0 at the break.

The rain subsided for the start of the second half and the visitors started the second half strongly, with a shot which just missed the target from Isaac Folkes and a good ball played into the box which just evaded the University attackers.

The Hawks’ leading scorer for the season, Takuma Hirano, came on at half-time and had their first chance after the break with a tame effort on goal, but it was University who made the early forrays forward in the second half.

That changed on the hour mark when the Hawks’ Jacob Palamidas got the ball in midfield and drove at the University defence – he wriggled his way through the defence and fired a low shot towards the near-right post; his shot snuck in off the post and into the back of the net as the hosts took a commanding 3-0 lead.

The Hawks had the next few chances from there, including a shot from Yannopoulos and captain Sidhya Malhotra, respectively, before they wrapped up the victory in style in the 77th minute.

After some good play down the left from the Hawks, including a backheel pass in behind, a cross was played in to the middle of the box – the ball was then played back to substitute Stavros Palapanis, who slotted the ball home from close range to give the Hawks a 4-0 win.

Despite some late chances for Daniel Lister and Jaefar Al Khulaifawi for University, they were unable to find a consolation goal, as the match finished 4-0 to the Hawks.

Speaking post-match, Inner West player Peter Yannopoulos said he was proud of the effort of his side to win three matches in a row, especially considering all three of those matches were in the space of eight days.

“Our fitness levels are through the roof, at the moment, and we are not showing any signs of slowing down, at the moment – I just cannot wait to get out there and play.”

Yannopoulos also spoke on the goal he scored from near the half-way line.

“I just saw the goalkeeper slightly off his line and I just thought ‘why not?’.”

The win for the Hawks saw them stay in the hunt with the top sides, staying in 5th on 30 points, six points behind 2nd place, while the loss for University was their 11th in a row as they fell to last place in the league in 15th.

It will be a quick turnaround for both teams with a mid-week Round 18 coming up, where the Hawks will hope to rise to 4th place when they travel to face 8th-placed Prospect United SC, while University will hope to end their losing streak when they host 11th-placed Granville Rage.

Inner West Hawks FC 4 (Peter Yannopoulos 7’, 29’; Jacob Palamidas 60’; Stavros Palapanis 77’)

Sydney University SFC 0


Friday, 31st May 2024

Mounties Wanderers FC 5-0 Prospect United SC

A powerful second half from Mounties Wanderers FC saw them continue their big winning streak with a strong 5-0 home win over Prospect United SC in a five-star performance.

Mounties scored their first goal early in the 8th minute when Eijin Kishimoto picked up the ball following a defensive clearance outside the edge of the Prospect 18-yard box – he held off a defender and drove a shot low and hard across goal towards the far-left post to give Mounties the early 1-0 lead.

The remainder of the first half was a tight affair where Mounties could not get into rhythm, but they took a 1-0 lead into half-time.

After the break, half-time substitute Nima Jafari doubled the hosts’ lead when he got on the end of a saved shot from Prospect goalkeeper, Connor Gilbert, and put the ball away to give Mounties a 2-0 lead.

Following that, Yuki Kanai scored his 15th goal of the season in the 66th minute from close range to give Mounties a 3-0 lead in the contest.

Kuot Maliet added a fourth goal for the hosts in the 75th minute when he cut inside from the right, beat a few Prospect defenders and slotted the ball past Gilbert with a left-footed shot.

Almost straight from kick-off, Mounties made it 5-0 when Andre Schroeder took on a shot from outside the 18-yard-box, which gave Gilbert no chance as it found the back of the net to wrap up a five-star performance for the hosts.

The win for Mounties saw their winning streak extend to five matches and saw them rise to 36 points, which closed the gap to the league-leading Newcastle Jets to just two points, while the loss for Prospect saw them stay in 8th, but they fell one point further behind 9th.

Mounties’ Round 18 clash is not until June 11, so instead their focus will be on their Round 19 clash at home to Hawkesbury City FC next week, while Prospect host 5th-placed Inner West Hawks FC in a mid-week Round 18 clash.

Mounties Wanderers FC 5 (Eijin Kishimoto 8’; Nima Jafari 50’; Yuki Kanai 66’; Kuot Maliet 75’; Andre Schroeder 76’)

Prospect United SC 0


Camden Tigers FC 1-1 Newcastle Jets

Camden Tigers FC, now unbeaten in their past three head-to-head matches against the Newcastle Jets, continued to be the bogey team for the Jets after they came from behind to snatch a 1-1 draw at home.

The Jets took the early lead in the contest through Lucas Johnson in the 14th minute as they looked to extend their unbeaten streak to 16 matches this season.

The Jets put together some good attacking football which was pleasing on the eye in the first half but could not find a second goal, as they took a 1-0 lead into the break.

After the break, the Camden players stuck to their gameplan and were rewarded in the 70th minute when Dean Mugridge scored to level the contest at 1-1.

Camden goalkeeper, Joshua Glasson, made plenty of goood saves to deny Newcastle a second goal in the match, while in attack for the Tigers they also created plenty of chances but were unable to take them.

Despite a confident showing from both teams, both Camden and Newcastle had to settle for the 1-1 draw.

The draw for the Tigers saw them remain in 7th place on the ladder, two points behind 6th, while the draw for the Jets kepttheir unbeaten season going but saw their lead at the top of the table cut to just two points.

Camden will hope to take confidence from that performance to their mid-week Round 18 clash at home to 12th-placed Hawkesbury City FC, while the Newcastle Jets will hope to continue their historic unbeaten season when they host 6th-placed Central Coast United FC mid-week.

Camden Tigers FC 1 (Dean Mugridge 70’)

Newcastle Jets 1 (Lucas Johnson 14’)


Granville Rage 1-2 Gladesville Ryde Magic

Gladesville Ryde Magic ended their 10-match losing streak with a big 2-1 away win over Granville Rage, who fell to a third-straight loss, in a competitive and open contest.

Both teams had chances early and both goalkeepers, including the Magic’s 52-year-old goalkeeper, Kiriakos Tohouroglou, made early saves.

The Magic’s first clear chance came to Aaron Khan, who rounded Rage goalkeeper Samuel Bortolazzo from a Chris Gaitatzis through ball, but the former was called offside in the build-up.

The Magic pushed and found the first goal of the match in the 31st minute when Christopher Guyot won the ball in midfield and played it to Gaitatzis in behind, who squared the ball to Genki Kohyama – he slotted the ball into the back of the net to give the Magic a 1-0 lead at half-time.

The Rage started the second half strongly with some good chances but were once again denied by Tohouroglou.

The Magic found a second goal in the 74th minute when substitute Oscar Felipe Nieto Rava squared the ball to Gaitatzis, who slotted the ball into the corner to give the Magic a 2-0 lead away from home.

The Rage held the majority of the ball after that and scored off a corner in the 83rd minute through an own goal by Khan to make the score 2-1 late.

Tohouroglou made some crucial saves late in the match to keep a fast-finishing Rage at bay late in the match to help the Magic to a big 2-1 win.

The loss for the Rage was their third in a row and saw them stay in 11th, while the win for the Magic was their first since their 2-1 win over Sydney University SFC in Round 5 and saw them rise off the bottom of the ladder for the first time since Round 8 as they moved up into 14th.

The Rage will hope to respond quickly and end their four-match losing streak when they travel to face last-placed Sydney University SFC in a mid-week Round 18 match, while the Magic will hope to record back-to-back wins for the first time this season when they travel to face Inner West Hawks FC in Round 19, with their Round 18 home match against Mounties Wanderers FC the following week on June 11.

Granville Rage 1 (Aaron Khan own goal 83’)

Gladesville Ryde Magic 2 (Genki Kohyama 31’; Chris Gaitatzis 74’)


Saturday, 1st June 2024

Bankstown United FC 2-0 Central Coast United FC

Bankstown United FC continued their charge near the top of the league with a strong 2-0 home win over Central Coast United FC.

Bankstown looked organised in their defensive shape with a compact mid-block, which limited Central Coast’s opportunities to get forward early.

The hosts pressed well early in the match and found success when Marie Gauthier scored in the 12th minute to give the hosts an early 1-0 lead.

Bankstown hit Central Coast on the counter once again in the 27th minute through Mitchell Cross, who finished off the move to score his 18th goal of the season to put Bankstown 2-0 up at half-time.

Central Coast had a few good chances to get back into the match late, but the Bankstown defence defended well to keep them out as the hosts came away with a big 2-0 home win over the Pirates.

The win for Bankstown saw them move to 35 points, just three points behind the league-leading Newcastle Jets, and they stayed one point behind 2nd-placed Mounties Wanderers FC, while Central Coast lost back-to-back matches and fell to be seven points behind 5th-placed Inner West Hawks FC.

Bankstown will hope to continue to put the pressure on the top two when they travel to face 13th-placed Fraser Park FC mid-week, while Central Coast will hope to end their back-to-back loss streak and cause a shake-up near the top of the league when they travel to face the league leaders, the Newcastle Jets, midweek.

Bankstown United FC 2 (Marie Gauthier 12’; Mitchell Cross 27’)

Central Coast United FC 0


Parramatta FC vs South Coast Flame FC and Fraser Park FC vs Hurstville FC were both washed out and will be played at a later date.


Hawkesbury City FC had a bye in Round 17 and stayed in 12th place.


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