ST GEORGE have come away with a valuable three points after beating Manly United 4-3 in a gripping encounter at Seymour Shaw Park this afternoon.
St George got off to the start they wanted when the ball was caught up inside the Manly box. With the Manly defence unable to clear, it was eventually netted by Aleks Jovovic to take the Saints 1-0 up inside the opening minute.
Manly responded in the best way possible though as Masakatsu Tanaka broke through the Saints defence and made a nice run up field. He was then able to find Christopher Payne who neatly slotted the ball into the back of the net to level the scores.
After a frantic opening, both teams were able to find some rhythm and on the 26’ minute mark, Jovovic found himself with some space inside the Manly half.
He was able to cross the ball into the box, finding the returning Juan Chavez who was able to finish past Manly keeper Dylan Mitchell to take St George 2-1 up.
St George extended their lead through the good work of Chris Gomez who found himself In possession inside the box and he was able to make the most of the opportunity, beating Mitchell to take the Saints into a commanding position early in the second half.
St George again looked good as Bruno Pivato made a strong run down the right flank. The ball was then crossed into the box and Andreas Vais was able to tap the ball past Mitchell to put the Saints 4-1 up. Manly’s keeper has become all to used to picking the ball out of the net in recent weeks.
Sitting on a comfortable three goal lead, complacency started to creep into the Saints game and this allowed Manly to get right back in the contest.
The away side hit back firstly as a long range shot was blocked by Saints keeper Dion Shaw but the ball rebounded and youngster Chris Arditti was able to hammer it into the back of the net to make the score 4-2.
Manly were well and truly back in the game when Daniel Saric made a break down the left and was able to finish off beautifully to make the score 4-3.
Despite some hairy moments for St George in the closing stages as Manly chased a remarkable comeback point, the Saints were able to come away with victory in the seven goal thriller.
St George coach Manny Spanoudakis was happy with his teams performance right across the park.
“I was really happy with the whole team today, I thought everyone played their roles as asked," Spanoudakis said.
“It was a great performance until the 4-1, where we showed our inexperience as a squad to let then back into the game.”
Meanwhile Manly United coach Paul Dee can still take some positives out of his team’s performance.
“Look it’s disappointing, obviously we fought back well but at the end of the day you can’t expect to win after conceding four goals," Dee said.
“It is definitely something we need to fix, although there was good spirit shown to fight back, but we need to show that spirit from the start.”
St George Saints 4 (Aleks Jovovic 1’, Juan Chavez 26’, Christopher Gomez 50’, Andreas Vais 65’)
Manly United FC 3 (Christopher Payne 4’, Christopher Arditti 82’, Daniel Saric 87’)
Sunday 18th May, 2014
Seymour Shaw Park, Miranda
Referee: Kurt Ams
Assistant Referees: Andrej Giev and Matthew McOrist
Fourth Official: Samuel Grasso
St George: 1.Dion Shaw; 2.Costa Andricopoulos, 3.David Dascal, 5.Bill Tsanidis, 7.Chris Gomez, 11.Juan Chavez, 12.Aleks Jovovic, 13.Lenox Tweneboa, 16.Jonathon Castano-Acero, 19.David Talevski, 23.George Codrea
Substitutes: 21.Lucas North, 6.Maerto Jurilj, 8.Nick Napoli, 9.Andreas Vais, 10.Bruno Pivato
Yellow Cards: Costa Andricopoulos
Red Cards: Nil
Manly United FC: 1.Dylan Mitchell; 3. Leigh Egger, 4.Graeme Forbes, 5.Joshua Lawson, 8.Daniel Grant 9.Chris Payne, 10.Brendan Cholakian, 11.Roberto Speranza, 13.Tanaka Masakatsu, 19.Daniel Saric, 22.Jack Green
Substitutes: 6.Josh Ward, 16.Jed Prater, 17.Nathan Sim, 20.Tonu Liiband, 32.Chris Arditti
Yellow Cards: Nil
Red Cards: Leigh Egger
*NB – Substitutes and cautions not finalised due to technical issues experienced
2- Lenox Tweneboa (SG)
1-Chris Payne (MU)
– By Jack Hislop, National Premier Leagues Mens 1 Reporter, at Seymour Shaw Park