BLACKTOWN City retained bragging rights as the top team in Blacktown with a comprehensive 3-0 win against Blacktown Spartans.
A packed Lily’s Football Centre was the venue as City moved one step closer to claiming the Blacktown Mayor’s shield in an entertaining clash.
Blacktown Spartans showed plenty of intent from the opening whistle with a high press which had the home side searching for space.
The opening exchanges were not for the faint of heart with both teams more than willing to put their body on the line.
About three inches of goal post was all that stood between Patrick Antelmi and opening the scoring, as the City striker’s minute shot in the seventh minute, from only two metres, out crashed off the upright.
Almost immediately the action was straight down the other end of the pitch with Spartans midfielder Shu Sasaki’s volley stopped at point blank range by City keeper Nenad Vekic.
Both sides battled tirelessly in midfield and it took an error from Carlos Saliadarre in the 31st minute for the deadlock to be broken.
A long throw from the Spartans shot stopper fell at the feet of City attacker Mitchell Mallia whose long range lob was too much for Saliadarre to stop.
Mallia was in a rich vein of form and it was his name on the scoresheet once again only 10 minutes later with his clinical finish giving Blacktown City a 2-0 advantage going into half time.
Heavy tackling and bodies on the line remained the theme of the match at the start of the second stanza.
Futa Nakamura and Sasaki were constant threats in the Spartans midfield however they lacked the final pass to truly break down City’s defence.
In the 69th minute Connor Evans thought he had put the game beyond doubt for Blacktown City.
However the raised fall of the assistant referee ensured the Spartans still had a slim chance.
Ben De Haan’s side pushed hard in attack desperate to pull back the two goal deficit but once again Zach Cairncross and the City defence had its their of the field secure.
The addition of Danny Choi for a late cameo off the bench injected a bit of extra excitement for City fans.
It was the brilliant play of Choi which put the final nail in Spartans’ coffin as his inch perfect cross was hammered into the back of the net by Joey Gibbs in the 87th minute.
Another shining light in Crittenden’s corner was the inclusion of former Western Sydney Wanderers midfielder Yianni Perkatis who came on late in the second half to make his debut in this year’s PS4 NPL NSW Men’s 1 competition, only days after not being offered a new contract by the Hyundai A-League. His inclusion will only further strengthen what is an already pretty solid City outfit.
While the 3-0 result was not what De Haan would’ve hoped for he could only look to the positives after the full time whistle.
“We continue to play great football against good sides but a few moments where we lose concentration tend to cost us the win,” he said.
“It’s the third week in a row for us going down like this.
“Our opening 30 minutes was brilliant and again we were really competitive in the second half. Our football has been of a high standard but we need to find a way to turn the performance into wins.”
For Blacktown City coach Mark Crittenden it was another strong showing from his side.
“There wasn’t much to be disappointed with from that game. Everyone played well and helped us to a big win.
“The big focus this week was managing the players through three games in six days. To see them come out tonight and play so well is great to see.
“It’s always nice to win the derby games but our focus now has to go back to getting the job done next round.
Blacktown City FC 3 (Mallia 31’ 43’, Gibbs 87’)
Blacktown Spartans 0
Saturday, May 16, 2015
Lily’s Football Centre, Seven Hills
Referee: Adrian Arndt
Assistant Referees: Alyson Flynn & Nicholas Backo
Fourth Official: Patrick Teleki
Blacktown City FC: Vekic; Antelmi (Araujo 60’), Cairncross, Evans, Fragogiannis, Gibbs, Lewis, Macura, Major (Choi 65’), Mallia (Perkatis 77’), Sperenza
Substitutes not used: Perre, Prendergrast,
Yellow Cards:Fragogiannis 22’ Antelmi 59’ Speranza 79’ Perkatis 85’
Blacktown Spartans: Saliadarre; Crighton, Dukic, Fogarty, Kondek, Long, Morton, Nakamura, Sasaki, Tanner, Tosi (Da Silva 67’)
Substitutes not used: Nascimben, Valastro, Tomohiro, Quigley
Yellow Cards: Dukic 15’ Kondek 70’
3 – Mitch Mallia (City)
2 – Zach Cairncross (City)
1 – Futa Nakamura (Spartans)