Sydney FC Give Melbourne Another #BigBlue

Sydney FC 2 (Le Fondre 61’, Barbarouses 68’) def. Melbourne Victory 1 (Toivonen 45’)

Sydney FC has retained the Beyond Blue Cup and Big Blue bragging rights following a 2-1 come from behind win against Melbourne Victory, with former Victory man Kosta Barbarouses netting the winner.

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The squad celebrate following their #BigBlue win.

Moments That Mattered:

  1. Le Fondre Chance – 38’ – Le Fondre drags his snap shot just wide of the right-hand post after some tidy lead up play.
  2. Toivonen Goal 45’ – Melbourne go ahead with a goal largely against the run of play as Toivonen heads home from close range.
  3. Ninkovic Chance 61’ – Baumjohann sprays the ball out wide for Ninkovic to let go with thumping effort, only just tipped away by Thomas
  4. Le Fondre Goal - 61’ – Sky Blues restore parity through the head of Le Fondre as he latches onto Wilkinson’s nod down following a well-delivered corner.
  5. Le Fondre Chance – 65’ – Retre’s well weighted cross is met by Le Fondre who rises well and just heads above the upright
  6. Barbarouses Goal – 68’ – Barbarouses comes back to haunt his old club as he hits the bar before finding the net at the second time of asking. Great lead up play from Grant and O’Neill.
  7. McGowan Chance – 83’ – McGowan is found at the back as he attempts to head it back the way it came, only to narrowly miss the opposite upright.
  8. Barbarouses Chance – 84’ – Barbarouses gallops forward and lets fly from some 25 yards, going agonisingly close to bagging his second.
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Kosta Barbarouses stabs home the winning goal.

Sydney FC controlled the game early against a well organised and deeply set Melbourne Victory, going closest to finding the net through Le Fondre deep into the half.

However, going against the run of play, it was the visitors that drew first Big Blue blood through Toivonen as he headed home on the stroke of halftime.

Melbourne set up to protect their slender lead but would be foiled in what was a pulsating ten minutes that turned the Big Blue on its head.

Le Fondre bagged his fifth of the campaign with a headed effort to restore parity around the hour mark.

Sydney FC found the winner through a familiar face for Victory after piling on more pressure.

O’Neill’s deftly weighted ball to the back post was chested down by Grant to Kosta Barbarouses.  He nudged the ball against the bar before finding the net at the second attempt against his former side.

Sydney FC looked the most likely to add to the scoring but it wasn’t to be as the side reclaimed the Beyond Blue Cup for another year.

Corica’s men now turn their attention to the Grand Final rematch away to Perth Glory on Saturday night.

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Adam Le Fondre celebrates his equaliser.

What they said:

Steve Corica: “We dominated the first half without the goal going in but there were a few things we had to correct in the second half and we did. A couple more goals would have been deserved as well.

[On Barbarouses’ goal] “Obviously it’s great for him against his old club in an important game and it was a vital goal.

[On Rhyan Grant] “I really think Rhyno has gone to another level this season. With the confidence he’s got out of the Socceroos he’s gone to a new level.

“It’s a very good achievement to have 200 games at the one club. He’s typical Sydney FC, he works extremely hard, he does everything for the team, he’s a great guy and he came up with an assist tonight, which is great. He’s really playing well and enjoying his football at the moment.

[On being back at Kogarah] “It was great, we love it here and get great results. Great crowd as well which was fantastic to show up for our boys who are playing extremely well and we want that to continue.”

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A fantastic tifo from The Cove pre-match.

Sydney FC: 1. Andrew REDMAYNE (GK), 4. Alex WILKINSON, 5. Alexander BAUMJOHANN (17. Anthony CACERES 66’), 6. Ryan McGOWAN, 8. Paulo RETRE (7. Michael ZULLO 76’), 9. Adam Le FONDRE, 10. Milos NINKOVIC, 11. Kosta BARBAROUSES (12. Trent BUHAGIAR 90+2’), 13. Brandon O’NEIL, 23. Rhyan GRANT, 26. Luke BRATTAN.

Subs Not Used: 20. Thomas HEWARD-BELLE, 2. Patrick FLOTTMANN, 16. Joel KING, 18. Luke IVANOVIC.

Yellow Cards: 5. Alexander BAUMJOHANN 36’, 8. Paulo RETRE 52’

Red Cards: None.

Melbourne Victory: 20. Lawrence THOMAS (GK), 3. Corey BROWN, 4. James DONACHIE, 6. Leigh BROXHAM, 8. Jakob POULSEN (22. Kristijan DOBRAS 86’), 11. Ola TOIVONEN, 16. Joshua HOPE (10. Robbie KRUSE 65’), 18. Migjen BASHA, 21. Adama TRAROE, 24. Anthony LESIOTIS, 25. Brandon LAUTON (19. Benjamin CARRIGAN 90+3’).

Subs not used:  50. Brendan WHITE (GK), 13. Birkan KIRDAR, 26. Jay BARNETT.

Yellow Cards: 18. Migjen BASHA 76’

Red Cards: None.

Ground: Netstrata Jubilee Stadium

Crowd: 16,116

Referee: Shaun Evans