Sky Blues and Fury ends 1-1

Sydney FC and North Queensland Fury battled out a 1-1 draw on Wednesday night in torrential conditions at Sydney Football Stadium.

Sydney FC and North Queensland Fury battled out a 1-1 draw on Wednesday night in torrential conditions at Sydney Football Stadium.

The Sky Blues, still yet to register a win this season, missed a handful of gilt-edged chances in a lively encounter. After taking the lead via a Shannon Cole screamer in a dominant first half performance, it was a David Williams peach that got the Fury level pegging in the 78th minute.

Playing without any luck, the Sky Blues must again immediately look forward to their next match - a Monday evening assignment with the table topping Adelaide United (5pm kick-off) at the SFS.

Coach Vitezslav Lavicka was left rueing his side-s failure to capitalise on their opportunities.

“We always seem to be chasing that first victory. Conditions were pretty difficult for both teams but we lost the energy. Everybody from Sydney FC is frustrated about the results. We need to win one game, we-re so close. After that I hope we-ll be able to start climbing the table,” Lavicka said.

“Everything is about confidence. We have the quality players but perhaps the mentality is not right at the moment. I can-t be happy with the second half because we lost our energy and our opponents punished us.”

Sydney FC lined up with goalscoring intent with Mark Bridge, Alex Brosque and Bruno Cazarine again spearheading a formidable attack and the hosts took heed of Lavicka-s call for greater intent in front of goal, pressing aggressively and flooding forward in numbers at every opportunity.

In a rain-soaked first half, the Sky Blues posed repeated problems for North Queensland, with the ever-threatening Brosque engineering space behind the visiting defence on numerous occasions.

North Queensland were content to soak up the pressure and play on the counter-attack and their strategy nearly paid off when former Sky Blue Chris Payne found himself in space but skewed his shot high and wide. The hosts continued to apply pressure, with skipper Terry McFlynn and Brosque seeing their efforts blocked in quick succession. Minutes later Cazarine was inches from giving his side the lead, only to see his angled drive ricochet off the woodwork and out of play.

But Sydney-s luck finally changed late in the first half, when Cole broke the deadlock with a spectacular dipping volley. Cole latched onto a Bridge pass twenty-five yards from goal before taking it down on his chest and lashing the ball home with the outside of his foot, giving Sydney a well-deserved 1-0 advantage at the half time break.

Lavicka-s side began the second half with the same attacking urgency, Bridge-s stinging strike comfortably saved by opposition goalkeeper Justin Pasfield. It wasn-t long before the hosts came close again, an outstretched Stuart Musialik unable to reach a swirling Hiro Moriyasu delivery.

North Queensland went in search of a coveted equaliser but was fortunate not to be hit on the break with Brosque-s header first being well saved by Pasfield before McFlynn sent a fizzing attempt wide of the upright.

With fifteen minutes remaining, David Williams made Sydney pay for their wastefulness in front of goal, unleashing a searing 25-yard rocket which stunned keeper Liam Reddy and the Sydney faithful.

With the scores level, both sides tried in vain to find a winner. The Sky Blues were desperately unfortunate not to regain the lead when McFlynn saw his deft chip rebound off the underside of the bar and onto the goal line, before being desperately scrambled away.

It was the closest the Sky Blues would come to finding a winner as deep into injury time Stephan Keller-s cross just evaded the onrushing Cazarine. Cole was disappointed after the game but insisted that the players were not expecting sympathy for their current predicament.

“Momentum is a big thing in sport. [They] scored a goal out of nowhere and it just killed us. A couple of mistakes and it changes the course of the game,” Cole said. “But we can-t feel sorry for ourselves, no one else will. Everyone can say remember that day when Sydney FC didn-t win in eight games, and we need to change that.”

Match Details:

Sydney FC: 1 (COLE 38') North Queensland Fury FC: 1 (WIILLIAMS 76')

Sydney FC Line-up: 1. Liam REDDY (gk), 2. Sebastian RYALL, 3. Stephan KELLER, 6. Hirofumi MORIYASU, 8. Stuart MUSIALIK, 9. Bruno CAZARINE, 12. Shannon COLE, 14. Alex BROSQUE, 15. Terry MCFLYNN, 19. Mark BRIDGE, 22. Sung-Hwan BYUN (21. Scott JAMIESON 59').

Substitutes Not Used: 5. Hayden FOXE, 17. Matthew JURMAN, 20. Ivan NECEVSKI (gk).

Yellow Cards: 8. Stuart MUSIALIK 54'. Red Cards: Nil. Goals: 12. Shannon COLE 38'.

North Queensland Fury Line-up: 1. Justin PASFIELD (gk), 4. Erik AKOTO, 5. Mark HUGHES, 7. Gareth EDDS (c) (3. Bradley McDONALD 76'), 11. David WILLIAMS, 13. Andre KILIAN, 14. Chris GROSSMAN, 15. Chris PAYNE (2. Jack HINGERT 63'), 16. Simon STOREY, 17. Osama MALIK (9. Eugene SSEPPUYA 57'), 19. Isaka CERNAK.

Substitutes Not Used: 28. Sebastian USAI (gk).

Yellow Cards: 4. Eric AKOTO 17', 13. Andre KILIAN 56', 2. Jack HINGERT 83', 9. Eugene SSEPPUYA 86'. Red Cards: Nil. Goals: 11. David WILLIAMS 76'.

Referee: Ryan SHEPHEARD. Crowd: 6 978 at the Sydney Football Stadium.