Sydney FC went down 3-0 against Sydney United at Lambert Park on Saturday, with all the goals coming in the second half in the clash against the NPL NSW mainstays.
After withstanding an impressive attacking onslaught from the Sky Blues in the opening 45 minutes, United 58 found their shooting boots in the second stanza to claim all three competition points.
Veteran striker Chris Payne opened the scoring in the 53rd minute before a quality finish from Patrick Antelmi doubled the visitors lead with only seven minutes left on the clock.
Payne wrapped up the result in the final moments in the game with a trademark goal from inside the edge of the penalty area to finish the match with a brace.
The Young Sky Blues were not awed by their more experienced opponents taking the match to United 58 from the opening whistle.
However, Sydney FC’s adventurous attack nearly cost them after five minutes when Payne pinched the ball as the home side played the ball out before firing narrowly wide.
The early scare didn’t temper the Young Sky Blues attacking intent and Cameron Devlin had the sides first real shot on goal with a powerful effort from the top of the penalty are which was saved by Thomas Manos.
Sydney FC’s form striker Jeremy Cox missed a gilt-edged chance in the 12th minute when he failed to put a foot to a Luke Ivanovic cross which sailed across the face of goal avoiding the United 58 defence.
A great flowing passing move from Sydney FC in the 17th minute carved up United 58’s midfield and defence but Sam McIllhatton’s shot went straight to Manos.
Manos was called back into action in the 21st minute when he pulled off a diving save at the feet of Cox who had latched onto a dangerous ball into the box.
United 58 finally found a way into attack and forced a brilliant save from Duro Dragicevic who dived and flicked Payne’s effort off the line.
Sydney FC had an effort of their own cleared off the line in the 34th minute when United 58 defender Adrian Vlastelica denied Cox.
Both sides were kept scoreless after the first 45 minutes but it was Sydney FC who looked the most threatening.
However, that dominance couldn’t stop the Red’s strong start to the second stanza as Payne found an opener after 53 minutes.
The veteran striker demonstrated all his experience to loft the ball over an onrushing Dragicevic.
The visitors had the wind in their sails after scoring the opener and had Sydney FC on the back foot.
A dangerous ball across the goal line narrowly missed Sam Perre in the 61st minute in what should’ve been United 58’s second.
Panny Nikas would’ve wanted his time over again in the 65th minute when he wasted a brilliant ball from Perre to put him into space but his shot sailed well wide and was lucky not to go out for a throw in.
The Young Sky Blues fought desperately to work their way back into the contest but they couldn’t find a way through a resurgent United 58 defence
In the 84th minute the visitors doubled their lead with a stinging strike from Patrick Antelmi from outside the penalty area which left Dragicevic flapping at thin air as the ball struck the back of the net.
United 58 wrapped up the result in the 90th minute with Payne putting the icing on the cake with his side’s third goal for the night.
Their coach Miro Vlastelica was a happy man at full tie and praised Sydney United 58’s tenacity to fight back in the second half.
“That was a good win for us, we adjusted well in the second half and took our chances,” he said.
“Sydney FC are a very well organised side and they had us on the back foot at times in that first half.
“We’ve been good in the final third for the past few weeks so it was nice to see the boys continue that strong run in front of goal.”
A disappointed Sydney FC coach Robbie Stanton questioned his players attitude following the loss.
“It was a very poor second half performance after we should’ve been 2-0 up at the break,” he said.
“We have to do better all across the park if we are to compete at this level. If these players want to progress in football they must improve because performances like this are not at the standard required to go to the next level.
“The second half was below the standard we set at Sydney FC. What makes it more disappointing is because the first half was very good.”
Next Round Sydney United 58 host Sutherland Sharks, while Sydney FC travel to Bonnyrigg Sports Ground to take on Bonnyrigg White Eagles.
Sydney FC: 0
Sydney United 58 FC: 3 (Payne 53’, 90′, Antelmi 84’)
Saturday, June 16 2018
Lambert Park, Leichhardt
Referee: A Arndt
Assistant Referees: A Giev & R Osbourne
Fourth Official: S Andrews
Sydney FC: 30. Duro DRAGICEVIC, 3. Patrick FLOTTMANN, 4. Liam MCGING, 6. Andreas AGAMEMNONOS (9. Guisseppe TILIO), 7. Jerry SKOTADIS, 8. Sam MCILLHATTON, 10. Cameron DEVLIN, 11. Luke IVANOVIC, 14. Joel KING, 15. Jeremy COX (13. Jordan SWIBEL), 16. William MUTCH (5. Patrick SCIBILIO)
Substitutes not used: 1. Mitchell EVANS, 2. Brendan CURTIS
Yellow Cards: Devlin 75’
Sydney United 58: 21. Thomas MANOS, 2. Cristian GONZALEZ, 4. Adrian VLASTELICA, 6. Chris PAYNE, 8. Matt SIM (3. Jordan ROBERTS), 12. Shannon COLE, 13. Sam PERRE (9. Patrick ANTELMI) 15. Tarir MAIA (14. Nick STAVROULAKIS), 18. Glen TRIFIRO, 22. Yianni FRAGOGIANNIS, 23. Panny NIKAS
Substitutes not used: 1. John HALL, 7. Mohamed RAHIMI.
Yellow Cards: Cole 74’
Sydney FC 7-0 Sydney United 58, 5.45pm at Lambert Park
Sydney FC defeated Sydney United 58 7-0 in an almighty statement of intent at Lambert Park.
Carrying a 1-0 advantage into the half time advantage, the Sky Blues rifled six beyond the visiting Reds without reply in the second half to underline the Sky Blues’ premiership credentials.
Harry Van Der Saag, Finn Ballard Mcbride, Jackson Bandiera, Benjamin Koop, Hamish Lamberton, Marco Tilio, and Guiseppe Tilio all shared the goals in a sensational collective display from Giancarlo Italiano’s men.
Sutherland’s loss means Sydney are now only three points away from the Sharks and have given their goal difference a significant boost. They’ll look to add a fourth consecutive victory next Saturday against Bonnyrigg.
Sydney United 58 will be intent on banishing a sorry performance and restoring their finals charge next round – but it won’t be easy against a Sutherland Sharks side also coming off defeat.