Rising young gun Hasan Jalloh has helped Bonnyrigg White Eagles snatch a last gasp 3-3 draw in their PlayStation®4 National Premier Leagues NSW Men’s clash against Sydney FC at Bonnyrigg Sports Centre on Saturday.
Jalloh’s 88th minute strike, his seventh for the season, was the final twist in a see-sawing game which featured Bonnyrigg fighting back after trailing Sydney FC on three separate occasions.
The young Sky Blues would’ve felt they’d done enough when Charles Lokolingoy put his side ahead in the 82nd minute to make it 3-2 after earlier goals from Will Mutch and Bai Antoniou.
However it wasn’t to be as the White Eagles rallied through goals from Martin Lo and Jalloh’s incredible second half double.
It was all Sydney FC in the opening exchanges of the clash.
And the visitors took advantage of their early dominance when they hit the back of the net in the 10th minute.
A nice counter attacking move up field ended with Charles Lokolingoy finding William Mutch whose diagonal shot from the right sailed into the net.
Bonnyrigg White Eagles went close to an equaliser in the 12th minute when Troy Danaskos’ free kick hit the wall and ‘keeper Mitchell Evans tapped it over for a corner.
Sydney FC should have done a lot better in 18th minute when Lokolingoy passed to Chris Zuvela who shot across the face of goal.
Shortly afterwards the visitors were at it again from the other side of goal. A Christian Gonzalez shot from the left forced James Chronopoulos to save with one hand.
Bonnyrigg found an equaliser in the 39th minute thanks to a fine finish from Martin Lo. The ball was played out to him and he majestically lined up his target from distance and didn’t miss.
The joy for the home side didn’t last long – just a minute in fact – before Sydney FC reclaimed the lead.
Bai Antoniou found himself on the scoresheet after finishing a sweeping move set up by Brendan Curtis
In the second half Bonnyrigg scored locked it up at 2-2 in the 57th minute.
A cross found Mun-Soo Gil who played the ball nicely into the path of Hassan Jalloh and he made no mistake with the goal in his sight.
In the 60th minute Bonnyrigg should really have taken the lead. A cross by Taylor McDonald from the by-line found Martin Lo lurking with intent close to the goal, but his spectacular volley from close range ended up over the intended target.
In the 70th minute Zachary Mackenzie found Jalloh in the area amongst a sea of players, but his diagonal shot took a slight deflection and ended just wide of the intended target.
In the 77th Martin Lo found Luke Ivanovic who shot, with only the ‘keeper to beat, but ball finished centimetres wide of the goal. Bonnyrigg White Eagles in reality had their chances against the young Sydney FC side in the second half but had difficulty finding the target much like Sydney FC in the first stanza of play.
The visitors then scored in the 82nd minute when a long ball on the left found Lokolingoy who beat off a robust challenge and then made his way into the area before threading the ball home for the visitors.
However, there was more life left in the game when in the 88th minute Bonnyrigg equalised. A cross was flicked on by Mun Soo Gil to Jalloh who delightfully turned the ball in from close range much to the delight of the home fans.
After the game Bonnyrigg White Eagles’ coach Brian Brown knew that a further two points had escaped his side but was pleased with several aspects about his team’s play.
“I think they played really well in the first half and we played really badly in the first half," he said.
"But credit to our boys because of the desire and commitment we showed to get back in.
“I am very proud of our effort because it would be easy in our position to drop our heads because of the injuries we have, but the boys dug in and I think we deserved to get something out of the game.”
Meanwhile Sydney FC coach Robbie Stanton was frustrated his side couldn’t capitalise on their full array of chances.
“We had enough one-one-one chances to win the game twice over, but it was poor execution that let us down,” he said.
“We were in the lead three times but it’s a game we threw away. We had to settle for a point, but they showed enough and crawled their way back into the game which is disappointing for us. It’s not good enough but it’s inexperienced decision making at this level and we should learn from it.
“We were able to create many, many chances and we were in the penalty area many times. The pitch was bumpy and that can hinder a team like us that plays through lines and plays good football.”
Bonnyrigg White Eagles:3 (Lo 39’, Jalloh 57’ & 88’)
Sydney FC: 3 (Mutch 10’, Antoniou 40’, Lokolingoy 82’)
Saturday 13th May 2017
Bonnyrigg Sports Centre
Referee: Stephen Lucas
Assistant Referees: Andrey Giev, Joon Park
Fourth Official: A. Brett
BONNYRIGG WHITE EAGLES: 1. James Chronopoulos, 3. David Vrankovic (28. Nikola Krncjar 84’), 6. Zachary Mackenzie, 8. Troy Danaskos, 10. Martin Lo, 12. Mun-Soo Gil, 14. Taylor McDonald, 16. Samuel Gallaway, 21. Hassan Jalloh, 27. Luke Ivanovic, 36. Nikola Zonjic (13. James McKenzie 81’)
Substitutes not used: 20. Stevan Savicic, 24. Damian
Yellow Cards: Nil
Red Cards: Nil
SYDNEY FC: 1. Mitchell Evans, 2. Brendan Curtis, 3. Patrick Flottman, 4, George Timotheou, 6. Nikola Kuleski, 8. Juan Zapata (21. Andreas Agamemnonos 64’), 9. Bai Antoniou, 12. Charles Lokolingoy, 14. Cristian Gonzalez, 16. William Mutch, 17. Chris Zuvela (39. Liam McGing 84’).
Substitutes not used: 11. Christopher Arditti, 20. Tom Heward-Belle, 22. John Iredale
Yellow Cards: Zuvela 54’, Gonzalez 88’
Red Cards: Nil
3 – Hassan Jalloh (BWE)
2 – Charles Lokolingoy (SFC)
1 – Martin Lo (BWE)
-by Joe Russo, PlayStation®National Premier Leagues NSW Men’s Reporter, at Bonnyrigg Sports Centre