It was goals galore at Popondetta Park on Wednesday night, as reigning Champions Sydney Olympic kicked into gear to secure a well-earned 6-2 victory against Mt Druitt Town Rangers in their rescheduled round 2 NPL NSW Men’s fixture.
Doubles to both Spanish sensation Alex Sanchez and skipper Jason Madonis, along with goals to Jack Stewart and Mitchell Stamatellis cancelled out goals to Felipe Zapata and Jordan Gomez to secure the victory for the visitors.
It was the first home match for the Rangers who won promotion into NSW’s elite men’s competition.
Teamwork was key to Olympic’s success on the night, with countless combination plays paying off, allowing them to record their second win of the season.
The incredible performance put their potential for the coming season on display, proving they are still well-and-truly in contention for back-to-back Championships.
The first goal of the game came after just four minutes, with the hosts cementing their place on the scoreboard with a strike from Felipe Zapata.
Olympic weren’t deterred by the early goal against them, creating a multitude of chances in the opening stages of the match in their attempts to equalise.
Their mounting pressure culminated to their first goal in the 21st minute.
Teamwork was crucial to the visitors opening goal, with Jack Stewart collecting the ball and passing on to Harris Gaitatzis who laid it off to Sanchez.
Sanchez drew Saliadarre out of position before passing to Madonis who fired home.
A second goal came in the 28th minute for the boys in blue, with Stewart hitting it home.
Stamatellis curled in a ball to Will Angel, who volleyed a pass to Stewart to let off a strike that flew out of reach of the Mt Druitt custodian. It was his second in successive weeks.
Stamatellis scored a goal for himself in the 37th minute, heading home a cross from Jinya An.
Mt Druitt got themselves back in the game just before the half-time break, with Jordan Gomez sending his free kick out of reach of Henderson.
The ball ricocheted off the crossbar before falling behind the line and into the netting.
Olympic further extended their lead in the 70th minute, with Sanchez showing off his style to score a nicely taken goal.
The Spaniard made a speedy run through the Mt Druitt defensive line to send a strike soaring past Saliadarre.
Sanchez came back for more in the 83rd minute, chipping Saliadarre to score Olympic’s fifth of the night.
Madonis earned his second of the night in the 86th minute, capitalising on a slip up from Saliadarre which left the ball at his feet in front of goal.
The skipper tapped it in to cap off the night with Olympic’s sixth and final goal.
Olympic coach Abbas Saad was delighted by his team’s performance.
“We played some smashing football,” he said
“We are the defending Champions and we’ve got to start playing like Champions and I thought today we did.”
Rangers coach Aidan Desmond was looking forward to his team’s next fixture after the disappointing loss.
“We let ourselves down,” he explained.
“We’ve just got to learn from that, be better from it, and move on to this weekend.”
Mt Druitt Town Rangers FC 2 (Felipe Zapata 4’, Jordan Gomez 4’)
Sydney Olympic FC 1 (Jason Madonis 21’, 86’, Jack Stewart 28’, Stamatellis 37’, Sanchez 70’, 83’)
Wednesday 3rd April, 2019
Referee: Craig Fisher
Mt Druitt Town Rangers FC: 1. Carlos Saliadarre, 5. Jake Mamone, 6. Blake Thompson, 7. Luke Clifford (27. Giuliano Airoldi), 8. Matthew Clowes, 12. Nicholas Trimble, 13. Lord Darkoh, 14. Felipe Zapata (4. Joshua Gould), 15. Cooper Coskerie, 17. Jordan Gomez, 23. Adrian Vranic (9. Alex Boyadijan)
Substitutes Not Used: 18. Christian Long, 25. Mathew Nikolovski,
Yellow Cards: Lord Dakoh 90’
Red Cards: Nil
Sydney Olympic FC: 1. Paul Henderson, 2. Thomas Whiteside, 4. Mitchell Stamatellis, 7. Will Angel, 8. Jason Madonis, 10. Harris Gaitatzis (23. Troy Danaskos), 11. Jinya An, 14. Alex Sanchez (9. Radovan Pavicevic), 17. Jack Stewart (6. Nikola Kuleski), 24. Hagi Gligor, 33. Nikolas Tsattlios
Substitutes Not Used: 20. Ezequiel Consoni, 25. Dimi Petratos
Yellow Cards: Mitchell Stamatellis 77’, Nikola Kuleski 77’
Red Cards: Nil
3 – Alex Sanchez (SO)
2 – Jason Madonis (SO)
1 – Mitchell Stamatellis (SO)
Written by Madeline Riley