Tuesday, October 19, 2021

A-League: Melbourne City close in on top spot, Jets punished by early Wales goal

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 5 Apr 2021

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Melbourne City left it late to overcome Wellington Phoenix 3-2 and climb into second place, while an early Lachlan Wales strike saw Western United down Newcastle Jets 1-0 in Monday’s other A-League match.

City’s six-match winning run was halted by Western United last time out, but they hit back at WIN Stadium to move to within two points of leaders Central Coast Mariners with a game in hand.

Tomer Hemed equalised for Phoenix after Curtis Good had headed City in front from six yards, but Jamie Maclaren restored the visitors’ lead with a powerful strike across Oliver Sail.

Wellington equalised for a second time before the hour through skipper Ulises Davila, who curled a delightful low shot into the bottom-left corner from 20 yards – the seventh goal they have scored from outside the box in the 2020-21 A-League season.

But Melbourne went away with the three points in Wollongong thanks to substitute Marco Tilio’s late header following some good link-up play out on the right to make space for Connor Metcalfe’s cross.

It was an early goal that proved the difference in Monday’s early kick-off between Jets and Western United, with winger Wales slotting Dylan Pierias’ throughball into the bottom-left corner after just 36 seconds to make it goals in back-to-back games.

That was the first goal the visitors had scored in this fixture at the fourth attempt and was the earliest they have netted in their A-League history, putting them on course for a maiden victory against the Jets.

Craig Deans’ side attempted 20 shots in the remainder of the game, but just two of those were on target as they fell to a sixth loss in a row to remain second bottom of the division, while United are up to seventh with games in hand on the top six.

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