Sydney coach Frank Farina described Saturday’s 2-2 draw with the Newcastle Jets as a ‘hard one to take’ after they conceded a late penalty.
Sydney led twice in the match after Alessandro Del Piero opened the scoring in the 11th minute and Blake Powell made it 2-1 just before the hour mark.
The Sky Blues looked like they had done enough to claim all three points before skipper Terry McFlynn handled a Ryan Griffiths shot on the goal-line in the shadow of full-time.
Griffiths converted from the spot to add to his earlier first-half penalty to see both sides share the points.
“It is a hard one to take,” Farina said after the match.
“If you had of asked me before the game we would have settled for a point. To concede that late and to another penalty was disappointing but we have to move on.
“We have two massive games coming up at home now against Brisbane and Adelaide so we really have to focus on those two.”
Farina was gutted to have conceded two penalties, especially as he thought the first one in the 15th minute which saw Sydney defender Rhyan Grant clatter into Griffiths just inside the area was ‘dubious’.
“The second one was fair enough. The first one was a bit dubious,” he said.
“The angle the referee was on maybe he thought it was a genuine foul but I didn’t see a lot of contact with Ryan.
“But there is no point moaning about it. There are penalties you get in a season that is pretty similar to that and other ones you don’t get when you deserve them so it evens itself out.
“As much as we are disappointed to concede two penalties there is no point bleating about it – sooner or later we might get one that is a bit dubious.”
The Sydney coach said he was proud of the character shown by his team especially as they went into the match without stars Jason Culina, Brett Emerton and Joel Griffiths, with the latter controversially receiving a three-match ban on Friday.
“Very proud and pleased with the performance of the boys who came in, but to be fair you expect that,” Farina said.
“They are professional players and they are always wanting an opportunity and those who stepped in tonight took their chance tonight and that was very pleasing.
“We have been really de-stabilised by injuries and suspensions and having to change the team a lot.
“In 10 weeks I haven’t fielded the same backline in successive games – it is not an excuse – I am just saying that when that is happening it is very difficult to get that stability and have that continuity but in terms of effort, fitness and eagerness I have been very pleased and we have improved on that game by game.
“We have come back and won games at the death in the last two minutes, so that is pleasing.”
Farina said he was angry at the late decision to suspend Joel Griffiths after an incident during last week’s loss to Melbourne Victory.
“We will be looking into that this week but I certainly have thoughts on it and they will come out. But this isn’t the place to discuss that now,’ he said.
“We hope that we might be able to appeal it and if that is the case it will happen this week so there is no point in me discussing that point any further.”