Blacktown City missed an opportunity to open up a six-point lead at the top ladder after Round 8 of the 2019 National Premier Leagues NSW Men’s 20s, as they were held to a 1-1 draw against Rockdale City Suns on Sunday afternoon.
Sydney Olympic suffered a 2-0 defeat to APIA Leichhardt Tigers to slip in the race for first place, while Sydney FC came from behind to brush Sydney United aside; winning 4-2 after trailing 2-0 at halftime.
Match of the Round: Sydney Olympic 0-2 APIA Leichhardt Tigers, 2.30pm Thursday at Belmore Sports Ground
APIA Leichhardt scored a goal in each half to ease to victory over Sydney Olympic on Anzac Day, with Michael Trajkovski and Lachlan Hughes finding the net for the Tigers at Belmore Sports Ground.
APIA were slow to get going and had offered little in attack before Trajkovski scored from a corner after half an hour. They were more comfortable on the ball after the goal, but were made to wait until the final ten minutes for Hughes to close out the match with a fantastic curling strike.
Olympic were quick to settle into their rhythm from the first whistle and held the ball well in the midfield, but couldn’t capitalise on any early pressure and eventually turned possession over to the visitors.
APIA eased into the match with Nicholas Azzone and Sam Gulisano combining nicely down the right flank. Gulisano was particularly eager to get on the ball, and had an optimistic flick at goal from distance to give Marley Beeston a reminder of his side’s attacking threat.
Beeston was called into action shortly after when a long ball from the APIA midfield dropped in front of Bradley Dollin, with the goalkeeper rushing to the right to close down the danger and put the ball out of play.
Gulisano launched the corner into the six yard box and Michael Trajkovski peeled off the near post to flick a header across the goalkeeper. Giovanni Panuccio was on the line to get solid contact on the ball with his head, but he could only direct it down and into the goal.
Olympic responded well to conceding and enjoyed space on the wings as the first half came to an end. Troy Danaskos was presented with a decent chance to equalise when he was played through by Michael Gaitatzis, but he let the ball run too far wide of the goal and was closed down by Tuxford.
The Tigers pushed for an early second after the break, and might have scored again when a Gulisano corner dipped into the six yard box only to bounce past several APIA players and out for a goal kick.
Olympic’s best chance of the match came midway through the second half. Kamran Quyami turned on the right and curled a ball into the box for Billy Patramanos, who flicked a volley towards the near post only for Tuxford to turn it away for a corner.
Full time approached with little incident beyond several Olympic corners, until Lachlan Hughes lit up the second half with a stunning strike eight minutes from time.
Dollin poked a ball upfield for Hughes, who ducked inside his marker at the top of the box before dropping a shoulder to curl a beautiful shot inside the far post. Beeston stretched, but was unable to stop APIA from doubling a lead which they would hold until the last whistle.
Sydney Olympic FC 0
APIA Leichhardt Tigers FC 2 (Trajkovski 29’, Hughes 82’)
25th April, 2019
Belmore Sports Ground
Sydney Olympic FC: 21. GOLLAN Alex, 22. GAITATZIS Michael, 23. DANASKOS Troy, 26. PATRAMANOS Billy, 29. SUTOMO Brian, 30. BEESTON Marley, 38. TAOUIL Andre, 32. QAYUMI Kamran, 31. EHIOZEE Ericson, 56. PANUCCIO Giovanni, 45. HAMDAN Ali
APIA Leichhardt Tigers FC: 42. ABOUCHAAYA Camil, 32. AZZONE Nicholas, 22. TUXFORD Blake, 38. DOLLIN Bradley, 43. FIORESE Gian, 17. GULISANO Samuel, 33. NICHOLS Peter, 40. PRISUDA Zeke, 39. SPARACINO Anthony, 20. TRAJKOVSKI Michael, 14. HUGHES Lachlan
Sydney FC 4-2 Sydney United 58, 11am at Lambert Park
Sydney FC picked up their first win in April with a stunning win over Sydney United 58 at Lambert Park on Saturday afternoon; a Tyson Savas hattrick taking the hosts keeping the hosts in eighth place heading into Round 9.
United led 2-0 at the break thanks to goals from Sam Perre and Karlo Borovic, but Sydney FC roared back in the second half. Savas scored three, while Callum Talbot also got on the scoresheet to round out a spectacular result.
United remain bottom of the table on four points after their third straight defeat; their sixth of the season.
Sutherland Sharks 1-2 Wollongong Wolves, 4.30pm at Seymour Shaw
Wollongong have halted Sutherland’s momentum with a 2-1 win at Seymour Shaw over the weekend, with Bul Juach finding the back of net yet again for the Wolves in Round 8.
Juach scored his sixth goal of the season to help his side to all three points against Sutherland, with Liam Wille also getting on the scoresheet for Wollongong. James Temelkovski scored for Sutherland but it wasn’t enough to make a difference here, as the Sharks drop two places into seventh.
Wollongong, meanwhile, move up into fifth place after their second win in as many weeks.
Mt Druitt Town Rangers 0-4 Marconi Stallions, 5pm at Popondetta Park
Marconi Stallions thrashed Mt Druitt Town Rangers 4-0 at Popondetta on Saturday afternoon, a result which sees Mt Druitt slip two places into sixth after their third defeat of the season.
Advin Trebincevic scored a brace for the visitors, while Kye Soares and Damian Tsekenis also pitched in to inflate the scoreline. A red card for Giuliano Airoldi, meanwhile, could hardly have helped Mt Druitt’s efforts at salvaging the game.
Mt Druitt will be disappointed with this result after coming into this match on a solid run of form. Marconi, for their part, move up to ninth place, and still have a game in hand.
Manly United 2-2 Hakoah Sydney City East, 1pm at Cromer Park
Jamie Glover scored twice for Manly United in a a 2-2 draw with Hakoah Sydney City East at Cromer Park on Sunday afternoon.
Nathan Roberts and Hesan Soufi scored for the visitors, meaning Manly United must wait at least another week to snap a winless streak stretching into its fifth week.
Neither side will be particularly pleased with the result: Manly drop into tenth place, while Hakoah have reason to be only marginally happier after moving up off the bottom of the table on goal difference.
Blacktown City FC 1-1 Rockdale City Suns, 1pm at Lily Homes Stadium
Blacktown City were held to a 1-1 draw by Rockdale City Suns at Lily Homes Stadium on Sunday afternoon, a result which will come as a blow to a Blacktown side looking to streak away from the chasing pack at the earliest opportunity.
Daniel Colosimo scored for the hosts but a goal from Rockdale’s Noah Botic meant they were unable to open up a six-point gap at the top of the table after Sydney Olympic’s defeat to APIA Leichhardt.
Rockdale sit five points behind the leaders in fourth place heading into Round 9, and a clash with Manly United next Sunday afternoon.
-By Max Grieve