Jets Edge Sydney FC In Wollongong Friendly

A single goal from Newcastle Jets’ James Virgili was enough for the Novocastrians to edge a tight contest over Sydney FC in front of six and a half thousand fans at Wollongong’s WIN Stadium.

A single goal from Newcastle Jets- James Virgili was enough for the Novocastrians to edge a tight contest over Sydney FC in front of six and a half thousand fans at Wollongong-s WIN Stadium.

The pacy midfielder broke free down the right hand side in the 52nd minute to cut inside and finish and earn the Jets the 1-0 friendly win.

Sydney FC put out a strong team despite a last minute withdrawal from midfielder Brett Emerton due to illness. He was replaced by Hagi Gligor while Socceroo Richard Garcia made his first appearance for the club, starting in a forward three alongside Chris Naumoff and Joel Chianese.

Nick Carle captained the side in the absence of Brett Emerton and Terry McFlynn who was playing as a substitute.

The Jets began the stronger of the two sides with Zadkovich testing Janjetovic with an early shot, before the keeper made an excellent save with his foot from Virgili, after the midfielder went clear on goal in six minutes.

Janjetovic had to be alert again a few minutes later when Zadkovich curled a shot over the wall from a free-kick, but the Croatian born stopper made an easy save.

Sydney FC were next to have an attempt with striker Chris Naumoff ending a winding run through the Jets defence with a shot that cleared the crossbar after 25 minutes.

That chance galvanised the Sky Blues with Marc Warren twice making runs down the left hand side of the pitch to put in dangerous crosses which narrowly missed a Sydney FC foot.

Sydney created their best chance of the game just before half time when Garcia made room down the right to cross to Naumoff, who forced Birigitti into a reflex save from 8 yards.

The sides went into the break deadlocked but it was Newcastle who made the breakthrough seven minutes into the second half. Caravella played the ball to Virgili on the right hand side and the wide man used his pace to come inside, beat Calvano and slot the ball beyond Janjetovic at the near post.

Some great work from striker Joel Chianese almost squared the ledger five minutes later. The young forward picked up the ball on the left edge of the box and fired a shot across goal which Birigitti palmed away for a corner.

Centre half Tiago Calvano forced Birigitti to palm over the bar with a neat lob from the resultant corner and then had claims for a penalty waved away after he was felled in the box.

Sydney kept the pressure on and Nick Carle struck a left foot volley which was goal bound before a Newcastle head got in the way.

Janjetovic was called into action on 77 minutes when he made a flying save from a Joe Gibbs long range effort.

Sydney pushed for the equaliser and a long range effort from Ali Abbas came close but flew just past the right hand post of the keeper.

The two sides will meet again in four weeks when they kick off the Hyundai A-League 2013/14 season at Allianz Stadium on Friday 11th October.

Newcastle Jets 1 (Virgili 52-) d. Sydney FC 0

Sydney FC: 20. V.Janjetovic, 2.Seb Ryall, 3. Marc Warren (25. Daniel Petkovski 75-), 5. Matt Jurman, 11. Richard Garcia (14. Mitch Mallia 68-), 13. Tiago Calvano, 16. Joel Chianese (26. Josh MacDonald 83-), 19.Nick Carle, 22. Ali Abbas, 24. Hagi Gligor (15. Terry McFlynn 74-).

Unused Subs: 1.Ivan Necevski, 4. Pascal Bosschaart.

Newcastle Jets: 1. Mark Birigitti (20. Ben Kennedy), 4. Jacob Pepper, 6. Ben Kantarovski (26. Connor Chapman 64-), 7. Andrew Hoole (2. Scott Neville), 8. Ruben Zadkovich © (3. Zenon Caravella 45-), 14. Taylor Regan, 15. Craig Goodwin (13. Joe Gibbs 64-), 16. Mitch Oxborrow, 17. James Virgili, 19. Michael Bridges (11. Emile Heskey 64-), 24. Kew Jaliens (22. Adam Taggart 64-).

Subs: All used.

Ground: WIN Stadium, Wollongong.

Attendance: 6540.

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