Parramatta FC has clinched a nail biting 3-2 win against Blacktown Spartans in the opening round of the PlayStation®4 National Premier Leagues NSW Men’s 2016 season at Blacktown Football Park.
A Luke Grima goal in the 90th minute ensured Parramatta went home with all three points after Blacktown had come from behind to equalise only moments earlier.
It was a heartbreaking result for Blacktown who bounced back from a 1-0 half time deficit to have the scores level at 2-2 with only five minutes to play.
The frenetic final moments of the match was in stark contrast to the opening exchanges of the game with both sides looking lethargic.
Parramatta were unlucky not to take the lead in the 11th minute when Gosue Sama’s acrobatic bicycle kick was saved by a diving Carlos Saliadarre.
However, it didn’t take long for Sama to hit the back of the net when he broke through only a minute later to give Parramatta the lead.
The striker broke through the Blacktown defensive line and placed his shot past the outstretched arms of Saliadarre.
Down a goal, the Spartans pushed forward in an attempt to reclaim control of the match.
With Yianni Perkatis and Futa Nakamura pulling the strings, the Spartans began to lift their intensity.
Blacktown were unlucky not to level the scores in the 30th minute.
Amaury Gauthier’s shot after a scramble in the box was saved by Parramatta shot stopper Luke Turnbull.
A long rang effort from Futa Nakamura sailed over the bar just before the half time break as Parramatta went into the sheds holding a one goal advantage.
It was a different story in the second half for the home side.
Blacktown were full of energy after the break and began to trouble the Parramatta defence.
However, it wasn’t until the 74th minute when the extra pressure finally paid off for the Spartans courtesy of Luke Dukic.
Dukic found space on the far post from a well hit corner kick before the burly defender volleyed past Turnbull in the Parramatta net.
The Spartans had hardly any time to celebrate when Parramatta once again took the lead.
A long range effort from Ante Tomic was too much for a diving Saliadarre as the visitors took a 2-1 lead.
Blacktown refused to back down and was on level pegging in the 84th minute through Martin Vazquez.
Vazquez out jumped his defender to head home from a well place Olgun Dullak corner.
With the match seemingly headed for a draw, Luke Grima stepped up to break the hearts of Blacktown’s supporters.
The substitute found space and volleyed home in the 90th minute to secure the win.
Parramatta coach Franco Consentino praised his side’s fighting spirit
“The boys never gave up. What an incredible way to start the season,” he said.
“Blacktown had us late in the second half so to comeback the way we did was incredible.
“This match shows we are not here to make up the numbers this season.”
A sombre Blacktown Spartans coach Ben De Haan said his side paid the price for its sluggish start to the match.
“We looked like we didn’t want to be out there early on in the match,” he said.
“To lose in the 90th minute is painful but unfortunately we had it coming with the way we played.
“Thankfully it is only round one so there is plenty of time to get things right.”
Blacktown Spartans 2 (Luka Dukic 74’, Martin Vazquez 82’)
Parramatta FC 3 (Gosue Sama 12’, Ante Tomic 76’, Luke Grima 90’)
Referee: Adrian. Arndt
Assistant Referees: S. Brennan and J. Adabjou
Fourth Official: P. Liaros
Blacktown Spartans: 1. SALIADARRE Carlos, 2. VASQUEZ Martin, 4. MUTCH William, 5. DUKIC Luka, 6. PERKATIS Yianni, 7. SASAKI Shu, 8. OTT Joshua, 9. PROIA Anthony, 10. NAKAMURA Futa, 17. HYAM Tomihiro, 25. GAUTHIER Amaury (23. DULLAK Ogun 80’)
Unused Substitutes: 41. NASCIMBEN Domenic,12. MOOY Alex, 20. TOSI Ben.
Yellow Cards: Mutch 25’, Sasaki 55’, Perkatis 89’
Parramatta FC: 1. TURNBULL Luke, 4. SYMONS Josh, 5. MIJIC Tomislav, 6. GULLO Dan, 8. REZO Daniel (7. MARTEY Frank 81’), 9. SAMA Gosue (14. GRIMA Luke 86’), 10. SAMA Marco 11. TOMIC Ante, 17. GERSBACH Joshua (13. VAIS Andreas 85’), 18. MALLET Tom, 20. HAYDAR Ibrahim
Unused substitutes: 2. BROWN Blair, 23. DIACONO Jayden,
Yellow Cards: Gersbach 67’, Mallet 84’
3 – Ante Tomic (PFC)
2- Gosue Sama (PFC)
1- Futa Nakamura (BS)