Sky Blues Held Despite Dominance

Sydney FC 1 (Le Fondre (Pen.) 76’) drew. 1 Central Coast Mariners (O’Neill 36’)

Sydney FC has played out a 1-1 draw in largely dominant performance in front of a boisterous Sky Blue crowd at Leichhardt Oval.

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Adam Le Fondre celebrates his goal. Photo by Jaime Castaneda (@jamcas50)

Moments That Mattered:

  1. O’Neill Chance – 17’ – O’Neill’s thumping header from a Grant cross is just turned away by the Mariners keeper.
  2. Ninkovic Off the Bar – 20’ – Caceres squares outside the box for Ninko whose thunderous shot cannons off the post and back to him. His follow up effort misses narrowly.
  3. Brillante Chance – 29’ – A floating ball is headed down into the path of the Sky midfielder whose volleyed effort is dealt with by Kennedy.
  4. Caceres Chance – 33’ – Le Fondre acrobatic volley is nearly turned in by Caceres but Kennedy just does enough again.
  5. O’Neill Goal – 36’ – A goal against the run of play as the ball comes out to O’Neill off the corner to be drilled into the bottom right.
  6. Caceres Chance – 68’ – Caceres pirouettes to find space but drags his shot just wide of the post.
  7. Le Fondre Goal (Pen.) – 76’ – Brosque is brought down in the box for Le Fondre to step up and make no mistake from the spot.
  8. Brosque Chance – 87’ – A far post cross finds Zullo’s head to find Brosque but his header goes over the bar.
  9. Ninkovic Chance 90’ – A ball is header into the path of Ninkovic as he attempts to slot hope but Kennedy
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The squad and crowd react following the Sky Blues' goal.

In a dominant opening spell for the Sky Blues, chances came thick and fast with Ninkovic coming the closest with his thumping effort cannoning off the post.

However, it was the visitors who hit the net first largely against the run off play as a half-cleared corner found O’Neill on the edge of the box to beat unsighted Redmayne.

Corica’s men kept the pressure going in the second half against a resolute Central Coast with the pressure finally telling with a quarter of an hour to go as Brosque was brought down in the box for the official to award a penalty.

Le Fondre stepped up and coolly slotted the ball down the middle for his 13th goal of the campaign and send The Cove behind the goal into raptures.

Despite a number of late chances and the Sky Blues overall dominance, this was to be the last goal with the match ending all square after 90 minutes.

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A fantastic crowd packed Leichhardt Stadium for the first Sky Blues' Hyundai A-League game there.

What they said:

Steve Corica: “Happy with the performance. We dominated from the start and had plenty of chances.

“Only disappointments are we didn’t score more goals and get the three points.  They scored against the run of play in the first half and other than that, a long-range effort that Redders saved easily.

“We had about 14 or 15 shots, some one on ones and hit the post so plenty of good chances. It was not for the lack of trying and I can’t take anything away from the boys’ effort.

[On the Premiers Plate race] “Eight games to go and were not going to give up – we’ll fight until the end. Perth are going well and keep winning but us and Melbourne have to play them again.”

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Adam Le Fondre has an effort at goal.

Sydney FC: 1. Andrew REDMAYNE (GK), 3. Ben WARLAND, 4. Alex WILKINSON, 6. Josh BRILLANTE, 7. Michael ZULLO, 9. Adam Le FONDRE, 10. Milos NINKOVIC, 13. Brandon O’NEILL (2. Aaron CALVER 90’), 16. R GHOOCHANNEJHAD (14. Alex BROSQUE 62’),  17. Anthony CACERES (31. Luke IVANOVIC  70’), 23. Rhyan GRANT.

Subs Not Used: Alex CISAK (GK), 21. Mitch AUSTIN.

Yellow Cards: None.

Red Cards: None.

Central Coast Mariners: 1. Ben KENNEDY (GK), 2. J ASPROPOTAMITIS, 3. Jack CLISBY, 7. Andrew HOOLE (6. Tom HIARIEJ 83’), 10. Tommy OAR (18. Matthew MILLAR 17’), 11. Connor PAIN (22. Jacob MELLING 53’), 13. Aiden O’NEILL, 19. Matthew SIMON, 28. Samuel GRAHAM, 29. S MALLON, 68. Jem KARACAN.

Subs not used: 12. Adam PEARCE (GK), 8. Michael McGLINCHEY.

Yellow Cards: None.

Red Cards: None.

Ground: Leichhardt Oval

Crowd:12,188

Referee: Jarred Gillett