Sydney United 58’s woes continued as the former NSL giants suffered a 1-0 defeat at the hands of Manly United at the newly upgraded Cromer Park on Friday night in round 10 of the NPL NSW Men’s competition.
A lone goal to Manly’s Japanese star import Seiya Kambayashi was all it took for the Northern Beaches side to collect three points from the match as Sydney United 58 were unable to retaliate.
The win gives valuable points to Manly, while the loss for United 58 was not the start new interim coach Miro Vlastelica would have liked since stepping back into the head coaching role earlier this week following the departure of Joe Haywood.
Both teams kicked into gear as soon as the whistle blew as the hosts looked to put on a show for their home fans.
It was Andreas Agamemnonos who had the first real chance of the match in the 12th minute when his shot from outside the box was saved by Jack Greenwood.
Devante Clut then joined in on the action with a long range effort in the 24th minute but again Greenwood was equal to the task saving well.
After a number of half chances as well as battle in midfield it was United 58 that thought they got the first goal of the match.
Former Manly United star Chris Payne smashed the back of the net only to be denied by an offside call by the assistant referee much to the dismay of the travelling fans.
The match finally started to settle midway through the first half and the crowd at Cromer Park began to find their voice every time Kambayashi touched the ball.
It was however the visitors that thought they grabbed the opening goal once more and it was that man again, Chris Payne.
Fate though would play a role once more as his header was adjudged to be offside but it was yet another warning side for the hosts in the 29th minute.
A long-range strike from Kambayashi nearly broke the stalemate however a diving save from Danjiel Nizic saw it pushed away for a corner in the 35th minute but the signs were ominous that Seiya meant business.
Both teams hit the sheds for the half-time break scoreless as they looked to regroup and make an impact in the second stanza.
Looking to take the lead, United 58 came out firing as Jordan Roberts had a shot saved by Greenwood in the 49th minute.
It was Manly however who finally broke the deadlock and it was that man, Kambayashi that would etched his name on the scorer’s sheet with a well taken goal in front of a healthy crowd in the 58th minute.
The Japanese star drove towards goal and smashed a low drive that deflected off Nizic’s shin to send the ball into the bottom left corner and it was 1-0 to the hosts.
That goal sparked scenes for Manly United who were buoyed by their home fans as they went searching for a second of the match.
Manly United keeper Jack Greenwood stood tall and pulled off a couple of good saves as the game started to stretch but it was Kambayashi’s goal that would separate both teams as Adam Griffiths’ men took home the three precious points.
“It was great to be back in front of a nice crowd,” Adam Griffiths stated to Football NSW.
“Firstly, thanks to Dave Mason he has done an exceptional job with everything to do with this football club we are really pushing with a positive football mentality.
“In terms of the game it was a very tough match against a well organised Sydney United 58 team.
“They just changed their manager, and they have a lot of talented players but we dominated the majority of the game.
“They had a couple chances, and we had a lot more.
“I think we lacked a bit of quality in the final quarter but 100% we deserved the win, and it was a great goal by Seyia.”
Newly appointed Sydney United 58 coach Miro Vlastelica, although disappointed with the result, could not fault his team.
“Its always tough coming up here on a Friday night, but I can’t fault our performance,” he explained.
“We worked on things at training, obviously I’m new to the team, the boys adapted, we worked on certain parts of our game, the boys executed.
“Unfortunately, we got punished, we switched off for a split second when everyone thought the ref would call a foul for the injury or stop the play and Manly kept playing and we stopped.
“Apart from that I don’t think they were the better side.”
Manly United 1 (Seiya Kambayashi ’58)
Sydney United 58 FC 0
Friday 6th May 2022
Cromer Park, Cromer
Referee: Sam Kelly
Assistant Referees: Joon Park and Joel Crawford
Fourth Official: Alessandro Llana
Manly United FC: 2. Kieren Paull, 3. Jesse Piriz, 4. James Oates, 5. Thomas Fay, 7. Seiya Kambayashi, 10. Luca Kmet (29. Marcus Lal, 87’), 12. Finn Ashton (8. Dominic Ferguson 76’), 17. Jack Greenwood, 18. Lucas Rainbird, 19. Alan Aganovic, 22. Bruno Mendes
Substitutes Not Used: 6. Kristian Santich, 20. Zenden Hart, 21. Nick Rainbird, 31. Max Martinello
Yellow Cards: Fay 32’, Ferguson 91’
Red Cards: Nil
Sydney United 58 FC: 1. Danijel Nizic, 3. Jordan Roberts, 4. Adrian Stephen Vlastelica, 6. Christopher Baden Payne, 8. Kyle Cimenti (9. Patrick Antelmi 65’), 10. Devante Autupuna Clut (13. Jordan Ivancic, 81’), 14. Andreas Agamemnonos (16. Jacob Poscoliero, 81’), 15. Tariq Maia (21. Mihael Marcic 76’), 17. Matthew Joseph Bilic, 18. Glen Trifiro, 22. Yianni Fragogiannis
Substitutes Not Used: 23. Adrian Knez, 55. Goran Palecek
Yellow Card: Vlastelica ’38, Fragogiannis ‘44
Red Cards: Nill
3 – Seiya Kambayashi (MU)
2 – Alan Aganovic (MU)
1- Finn Ashton (MU)
By National Premier Leagues NSW Men’s reporter Sophie Tarrant-Foder