Fortune favoured the brave at Seymour Shaw in Round 4 of the PlayStation®4 National Premier Leagues NSW Men’s as Sydney Olympic snatched a 2-1 victory against Sutherland Sharks on Saturday.
Attack, attack, attack was the mantra for both sides as fans were gifted end to end action for the entire 90 minutes.
A likely candidate for goal of the season from Will Angel and a clinical finish late on from Chris Triantis clinched the result for the visitors.
The Sutherland Sharks has developed a reputation as entertainers this season with their aggressive style and it took only seconds for the home side to have their first shot on goal.
Striker Jordan Figon found space on the right hand side of the box after some slick passing from the kick off but the burly number nine was denied by a diving Paul Henderson in the Olympic net.
The early scare steeled the Olympic defence and they began to hold their own despite the match’s frenetic pace.
Tomihiro Kajiyama was a constant threat for Sutherland on the right wing as the pacy attacker’s quick first step had defender Jason Madonis on the back foot.
Against the run of play, Sydney Olympic were the first on the scoresheet courtesy of a sublime finish from Will Angel.
Angel trapped a long goal kick from Henderson on the right edge of the Sutherland penalty area before he unleashed a powerful curling shot into the top corner of the net.
Sutherland didn’t let the goal affect their direct style and were unlucky not to have equalised in the 37th minute.
Winger James Andrews broke free of his marker but was unable to beat Henderson in the Olympic goal who pulled off a clutch save.
Olympic had another scare only moments before the half time break.
A desperation sliding tackle from Howard Fondyke denied Sutherland’s Takuya Murayama when he had only the keeper to beat.
The halftime break provided the respite needed by Sutherland as the home side resumed the match with extra attacking vigour.
It paid dividends for the home side who levelled the scores in the 50th minute.
A sloppy Sydney Olympic Clearance rebounded off another player before the ball fell fortuitously in the path of Kajiyama who hammered past Henderson to make it 1-1.
Sutherland pressed and once again it was the brilliance of Henderson which kept Olympic in the match.
The veteran shot stopper was forced to make two diving saves to stop a close range effort from The Shark’s Steven Hayes.
Luck was very much on the side of the visitors in the 72nd minute.
A dipping cross from Angel was parried by Sharks keeper Nathan Denham into the path of substitute Chris Triantis who hammered home from four yards out to make it 2-1 for Sydney Olympic.
Sutherland pushed late for an equaliser with wave after wave of attack foiled by poor finishing from the home side.
The efforts of Carlos Villazon’s side prove too little too late as Olympic clung onto a hard fought win.
“We are a young team and are learning every week so wins like tonight are reward for the hard work the players are putting in,” Sydney Olympic coach Grant Lee said.
“Sutherland were relentless in attack so to hang on as we did was a great performance.
“We were a bit lucky at times but overall it was a quality performance and a deserved three points.”
Villazon said his side’s poor discipline in the final attacking third was a big factor in the loss.
“We can’t say we didn’t have the opportunities to win tonight,” he said.
“We wasted chances to score and against a team playing direct football like Sydney Olympic you can’t do that.
“Overall we are playing the style of football I want to play and have progressed each week. It won’t be long until everything comes together.”
Sutherland Sharks FC: 1 (Kajiyama 50)
Sydney Olympic FC: 2 (Angel 32’, Triantis 72’)
April 2 2016
Seymour Shaw Park, Miranda
Referee: Ben Abraham
Assistant Referees: Lance Greenshields and Thomas Lee
Fourth official: Brandon Lovrick
Sutherland Sharks: 1. DENHAM Nathan, 3. MURAYAMA, Takuya, 4. KAYES Stephen (8. MCSTAY Christopher 78’), 5. LITTLER Nicholas, 6. GORDON Matthew, 9. FIGON Jordan, 12. STERGIOU Lukas (10. DA SILVA Joshua 78’), 15. MOUSTAKAS Perry, 17. ANDREW James (7. PRESS Jack), 23. HAYES, Steven, 35. KAJIYAMA Tomihiro
Substitutes: 11. JOVOVIC Aleksander, 21. LOE Nikolas.
Yellow Cards: Murayama 28’, Gordon 90’
Red Cards: nil
Sydney Olympic FC: 1. HENDERSON Paul, 2. SORGE Brayden, 3. TOMELIC Anthony, 4. EGGER Leigh, 5. MADONIS Jason (19.CINDRIC Mark 45’), 6. STAMATELLIS Mitchell, 7. ANGEL Will, 8. FONDYKE Howard, 10. GAITATZIS Harris (11. BOUTOUBIA Jacob 80’), 16. GREEN Oliver( 9. TRIANTIS Chris 64’), 71. TSATTALIOS Nikolas.
Substitutes: 20 CRICKMORE Denver, 37. MONTFORD Eoin.
Yellow Cards: Egger 38’
Red Cards: nil
3 – Will Angel (Oly)
2 – Paul Henderson (Oly)
1 – Howard Fondyke (Oly)