Blacktown City extend their lead to eleven points at the top of the National Premier Leagues NSW Men’s 20s table after several challengers dropped points during Round 11.
Rockdale City Suns edged Sutherland Sharks 1-0 to move clear into second place, while Sydney Olympic slipped to a 2-1 defeat at home to Sydney FC on Friday afternoon to drop down to fifth. Marconi Stallions overcame Wollongong Wolves in a 3-2 thriller at Marconi Stadium, while Manly and Sydney United 58 couldn’t be separated at Cromer Park as they settled for a 2-2 draw on Sunday afternoon.
Match of the Round: Sydney Olympic FC 1-2 Sydney FC, 6pm Friday at Belmore Sports Ground
Sydney FC move into third place after easing past Sydney Olympic 2-1 at Belmore Sports Ground on Friday night; goals from Patrick Wood and Jake Hollman enough to give the visitors the edge despite the best efforts of Olympic’s Genki Kohyama.
Wood opened the scoring late in the first half before Kohyama equalised with fifteen minutes of the match remaining. The score was 1-1 for barely two minutes, however, as Hollman won a penalty before converting from the spot to give his side all three points.
Some clever interplay between Tyson Savas and Patrick Wood led to a golden chance for Harry McCarthy as he was put clean through behind the Olympic backline, but goalkeeper Marley Beeston rushed out to make a terrific save at the Sydney FC man’s feet.
Both sides were defending well in a fast game, with neither giving an inch as the first half wore on. There were plenty of corners in the early stages, but little in the way of properly dangerous shots on goal, with both backlines holding strong.
Genki Kohyama had a swing at goal for Olympic from deep on the right flank, cutting inside before swiping a bouncing ball well wide of the far post. Shortly after, a deep ball to the back stick found an unmarked Patrick Wood a few metres out from goal, but he was quickly closed down by Beeston and Olympic were able to clear.
The deadlock was broken just a few minutes before the break when Jake Hollman played one-two with Thomas Main from a corner, before clipping a low ball into the near post for Patrick Wood to flick past the goalkeeper.
Troy Danaskos floated an inviting cross across the six-yard box from a freekick shortly after the restart; Adam Pavlesic required to tip the ball on its way with Olympic players lining up at the back post.
Another Danaskos freekick, this one from a deeper position on the left flank, fell for Michael Gaitatzis, who held the ball up well only for Ali Hamdan to mishit a weak shot at goal.
Olympic were knocking on the door and deservedly equalised with fifteen minutes remaining when Genki Kohyama got the ball at the top of the box, taking a touch to his left before dragging a low shot back across the goalkeeper and inside the far post.
They were level for all of two minutes: Sydney broke immediately from the kickoff and Jake Hollman was brought down in the box, giving the forward the chance to give his side the lead again. It was a chance he wouldn’t pass up; burying the ball to the keeper’s right despite a heavy touch from Beeston as it flew past.
Sydney FC’s win takes them level with Olympic on seventeen points at the end of Round 11, three points behind Rockdale City Suns and eleven behind Blacktown City FC.
Sydney Olympic FC 1 (Kohyama 74’)
Sydney FC 2 (Wood 44’, Hollman)
17th May, 2019
Belmore Sports Ground, Belmore
Sydney Olympic FC: 29. SUTOMO Brian, 40. TSIPONIS Francis, 22. GAITATZIS Michael, 38. TAOUIL Andre, 25. PETRATOS Dimi, 37. KOHYAMA Genki, 39. SAITO Aoto, 21. GOLLAN Alex, 56. PANNUCIO Giovanni, 23. DANASKOS Troy, 30. BEESTON Marley
Sydney FC: 30. PAVLESIC Adam, 24. HOLLMAN Jake, 34. NIEUWENHOF Calem, 32. MAIN Thomas, 54. MLINARIC Anton, 22. TAVAS Tyson, 58. WOOD Patrick, 28. MCFARLANE Fletcher, 23. MCCARTHY Harry, 57. TRENKOSKI Jayden, 81. FONG Cameron
Sutherland Sharks 0-1 Rockdale City Suns, 4.30pm at Seymour Shaw
Sutherland Sharks fell to a surprising defeat at home against Rockdale City Suns in Round 11; a single goal from Alexander Malfara enough to tip the balance of the match in favour of the visitors.
Rockdale remain second after a particularly pleasing result away from home, though the gap to first-placed Blacktown City is still eight points.
Rockdale have managed to pull away from Sydney FC, APIA and Olympic, however, and are three points ahead of all three as they turn their focus to next week’s match against Sydney United 58.
Sutherland Sharks have slipped one place to sixth after their fourth defeat of the season, and must improve when they host Sydney Olympic in Round 12.
Marconi Stallions 3-2 Wollongong Wolves, 5pm at Marconi Stadium
Marconi Stallions scored the odd goal in five to clinch a see-saw win over Wollongong Wolves at Marconi Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
The Stallions raced out to a 2-0 lead at halftime, as Lachlan Sepping scored for the second match running and Martin Fernandez found the back of the net.
They were reeled in after the break and might very nearly have thrown away their win, with Lewis Grimshaw and Tatsuki Nagatsuka making life difficult for the Marconi backline in the second half.
Having weathered the storm, the hosts were able to find another goal to earn all three points; leaving them level with Wollongong on twelve points and in ninth place ahead of next week’s game against APIA.
Manly United 2-2 Sydney United 58, 1pm at Cromer Park
Manly United have slipped a place to eighth on the ladder after a 2-2 draw with bottom-of-the-table Sydney United 58 on Sunday afternoon.
The hosts enjoyed a 2-0 lead at the halftime break thanks to goals from Luca Kmet and Maximilian Rogers, but were brought back to level pegging after Joshua McDonald and Anthony Vastag netted for the visitors in the second half.
Manly play again at Cromer Park next weekend when they take on Wollongong Wolves, who sit just two points behind United in tenth place.
Sydney United are now only two points behind Hakoah Sydney City East after picking up a point this week, but will face a tougher task in Round 12 when they travel to Ilinden Sports Centre for a match against second-placed Rockdale.
Blacktown City 5-0 Hakoah Sydney City East, 1pm at Lily Homes Stadium
Hakoah Sydney City East were powerless to stop the Blacktown City machine from rolling on to their seventh win in eight games on Sunday afternoon; five goals from the hosts keeping them eight points clear at the top of the table.
Suley Bangura hit a hattrick, while Carlos De Oliviera and Alexander Purves were also on the scoresheet as Blacktown claimed their biggest win of the season to date.
Hakoah will be disappointed at the manner of this defeat after stringing together two consecutive wins in their previous matches, but will look to pick themselves up during the week ahead of their Round 12 match against Sydney FC. Blacktown, meanwhile, travel to Popondetta Park next Saturday for a match against Mt Druitt Town Rangers.
APIA Leichhardt Tigers 0-1 Mt Druitt Town Rangers, 1.15pm at Lambert Park
Mt Druitt snatched a 1-0 win at Lambert Park on Sunday afternoon to snap at three-match losing streak, and take the Rangers up to seventh place on the table.
The game was locked at 0-0 until the 87th minute, when a ball played across the face of the goal was turned in by an APIA defender sliding across to clear.
APIA Leichhardt’s third loss in five matches means the Tigers drop a place into fourth ahead of their Round 12 match against Marconi Stallions, and are now 11 points behind Blacktown City.
Mt Druitt, meanwhile, return to Popondetta next weekend to take on the leaders as they look to push for the top five.
-By Max Grieve