On Sunday afternoon I sat down with two fellow West Ham United fans at my local.
There was a lot of good quality football played in Round 17 of the A-League with a couple of draws, which indicates there isn’t much between the 11 teams as far as quality is concerned.
The round wasn’t soured by a goalless draw between the Newcastle Jets and Western United as it was an exciting game despite the hot weather and the fact that there were no goals.
There were two red cards and three penalties, including two in the final game of the round between the Central Coast Mariners and the Western Sydney Wanderers, as well as plenty of action.
Sydney FC have plenty to work on, despite being 13 points clear on the A-League table, as they aren’t playing their best football.
The Newcastle Jets did everything right except score a goal, which is just about the most important thing to do when you are sitting at the bottom of the A-League table.
Adelaide United controlled the game, as Melbourne City appeared to be disjointed and lacking a solid plan and a valid system to compete. Ben Halloran scored and was outstanding for Adelaide United.
Remarkably, Melbourne Victory were probably the better team against the Perth Glory, but they only left Perth with a point. It was remarkable due to Melbourne Victory’s heavy schedule of late.
The game between the Central Coast Mariners and the Western Sydney Wanderers was an extremely eventful game with four goals scored, two of them from the penalty box. Simon Cox of the Western Sydney Wanderers was awarded a penalty and scored the Western Sydney Wanderers’ third goal. Mohamed Adam set up that third goal for his team. The whole complexion of the game changed when Matt Simon was substituted on.
Sydney FC 1, Brisbane Roar 0
Sky Blues scrape home
Magic moment: Jamie Young made an incredible double save in the 67th minute.
Who stood out from the pack? Luke Brattan was incredibly good with his passing range, stringing some unbelievable passes together.
What went right? The Brisbane Roar have Jamie Young to thank for keeping them in the game. VAR correctly overturned a second penalty due to Kosta Barbarouses being adjudged offside shortly after the first penalty was awarded. The Brisbane Roar nearly got something out of the game, despite going down to ten men in the second half. Adam le Fondre scored again, this time from the penalty spot.
What went wrong? Scott McDonald hit the post with a header in the 32nd minute. Brisbane Roar were down to ten men in the 56th minute when Scott Neville was sent off. Jacob Pepper missed a good opportunity to score in the last minute of stoppage time, which would have given Brisbane Roar a point.
Newcastle Jets 0, Western United 0
The Jets play well, but fail to score
Magic moment: Jason Hoffman had a shot well saved by Filip Kurto in the 55th minute.
Who stood out from the pack? Nikolai Topor-Stanley worked tirelessly. Topor-Stanley made many runs forward that resulted in his team making attacking forays forward, and most importantly, was solid in defence.
What went right? Despite the game being a goalless draw, which implies that it was monotonous, the Newcastle Jets played some outstanding football as far as general play is concerned.
What went wrong? Andrew Durante got away with a push on Topor Stanley in 39th minute, even according to the VAR. Dimitri Petratos wasted a free kick in the 44th minute. The Newcastle Jets found a way not to score in the 75th minute and for the entire game as well. They finished the game with 26 shots to Western United’s four. Western United were thoroughly outplayed, which wasn’t reflected on the scoreboard as it should’ve been, if not for the Newcastle Jets’ lack of quality in the final third. The game ended as a goalless draw when it could well have been a one-sided obliteration.
Adelaide United 3, Melbourne City 1
Reds make a mockery of City
Magic moment: George Blackwood scored a fantastic goal from a corner with a clinical header in stoppage time of the first half.
Who stood out from the pack? Ben Halloran scored a brace and also played well outside of that.
What went right? Melbourne City were the better team until Adelaide United scored the opening goal of the game in the 12th minute through Ben Halloran. It was a deserved 3-1 win for Adelaide United as Melbourne City didn’t play well after Craig Noone scored the equaliser in the 16th minute.
What went wrong? Riley McGree squandered a chance to score in the 48th minute. Ben Halloran should have scored a goal in the 60th minute. Harrison Delbridge was sent off.
Perth Glory 2, Melbourne Victory 2
Magic moment: Nick D’Agostino scored his first goal for Perth Glory with a freakish header, which was the equaliser in the 90th minute.
Who stood out from the pack? Andrew Nabbout played extremely well, especially considering it was his third game in a week.
What went right? Ola Toivonen broke the deadlock in the 23rd minute. Bruno Fornaroli scored an amazing goal from a free kick in first-half stoppage time. Andrew Nabbout scored a freakish goal in the 59th minute. Ola Toivonen had a shot brilliantly saved by Liam Reddy in the 69th minute.
What went wrong? Bruno Fornaroli hit the post in the 35th minute with an unbelievable bicycle kick. Nick D’Agostino just missed a couple of chances in stoppage time. Chris Ikonomidis suffered an injury and was forced to be substituted off. Hopefully the injury isn’t serious.
Central Coast Mariners 1, Western Sydney Wanderers 3
Magic moment: Dylan Ruiz-Diaz had a header saved by Daniel Lopar in the 88th minute. It was a freakish save and the header was a good one that would’ve ended up in the back of the net against the average goalkeeper, but not Lopar.
Who stood out from the pack? Nikolai Muller finished the game with a goal and an assist.
What went right? Tommy Oar gave away a penalty in the 75th minute, which Mitchell Duke calmly scored from the penalty spot. The Central Coast Mariners were awarded a penalty in the 81st minute, which Matt Simon scored. Western Sydney Wanderers scored a great goal, which started from a turnover and ended up being the first goal in the A-League for Simon Cox. Mohamed Adam made up for a mistake, where he failed to pass a ball that would have ended up in a goal, by setting up the third goal for the Western Sydney Wanderers. The Western Sydney Wanderers got a much needed three points.
What went wrong? Western Sydney Wanderers missed a chance to score in the first minute. Kwame Yeboah missed an opportunity in the 20th minute. Nikolai Muller missed a great opportunity to score in the 30th minute.