Sydney FC’s PlayStation 4 NPL NSW Men’s 2 side played out a gritty five goal thriller winning 3-2 against the third placed Bankstown City at Jensen Park on Sunday.
With the pitch being chopped up and slippery after the recent wet weather it was Sydney FC that settled the quickest and soon had the home side on the back foot.
The Sky Blues threatened early when Patrick Flottmann put his header just over the bar from a Cristian Gonzalez free kick as Sydney FC continued the pressure with a series of corner kicks putting the Bankstown side under the pump.
Against the run of play Bankstown City did have a rare foray into the Sydney penalty area however keeper Mitch Evans stood tall to smother a close range effort to keep the scores at 0-0.
Chris Arditti was lively in the Sydney FC midfield and he almost opened the scoring in the 34th minute when released by Charles Lokolingoy but his shot curled just wide of the post.
The breakthrough came after 37 minutes when Arditti again shot on goal. A deflection looped the effort wide to the back post where William Mutch connected well with a low volley which bent inside the woodwork to give Sydney FC a deserved 1-0 lead and his first goal in a Sydney FC jersey.
On the stroke of half time the lead was doubled as Lokolingoy was released by Bai Antoniou who showed former Sky Blue skipper Michael Beauchamp a clean pair of heels to drive into the penalty area and slott the ball under the diving keeper for his 21st goal of the season.
Bankstown City came out firing in the second stanza and solid keeping by Evans kept them at bay, however there was nothing he could do in 65th minute when the ball fell into a mass of players from a City set piece and was scrambled into the net to reduce the deficit.
Just ten minutes later the scores were level when Bankstown City fired in from close range after the ball had bounced down off the crossbar and it was 2-2 and game on.
Showing great spirit and character the young Sky Blues hit straight back from the kick off.
Working the ball forward down the right flank Sydney FC crossed the ball into the City penalty area where Lokolingoy challenged the advancing Bankstown keeper. The ball spilled into the path of Daniel Maskin who made no mistake to rifle the ball into the back of the net for the eventual winner and a 3-2 scoreline.
Head Coach, Rob Stanton was pleased with his charges efforts and the three points. "It was a tough and physical battle on a difficult pitch against a good opponent" he said.
"We've had a bit of a lull in recent weeks but I see today as a turning point for the rest of our season.”
Sydney FC 3 (Mutch 37'; Lokolingoy 44'; Maskin 76') defeated Bankstown City 2 ( Ouffoue 65'; Gomez 75')
Sydney FC remain in second place on the league ladder but have reduced the margin to one point behind Western Sydney Wanderers. The clean sweep of results against Bankstown City with U18's winning 4-1 and U20's winning 2-0 provided a much needed maximum of 21 club championship points which sees Sydney FC lead that table by nine points over Wanderers.
Sydney FC are back home next Saturday at Lambert Park against St George FC (kick off 8pm).
Sydney FC: Mitch Evans (GK); Nicola Kuleski; Patrick Flottmann; Matt Green; Cristian Gonzalez; Yianni Spyrakis (C); Chris Zuvela; Chris Arditti (Aaron Avery 72'); Bai Antoniou (Daniel Maskin 72'); Charles Lokolingoy (Mani Gonzalez 80'); William Mutch
Subs Not Used: Nick Sorras (GK); Brendan Curtis
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