Melbourne City ended their three game losing streak as Stefan Mauk rescued an 1-1 draw with Adelaide United in the A-League.
Warren Joyce’s side have been bereft of form in recent weeks and looked on course for another defeat after falling behind at Coopers Stadium.
Johan Absalonsen gave Adelaide the lead in first-half stoppage time after a superb team move, and he should have doubled their advantage early in the second period.
His profligacy proved costly as Melbourne battled back, goalkeeper Paul Izzo gifting Mauk an equaliser against his old club.
Bruno Fornaroli thought he had won it in the closing stages but the striker was rightly flagged offside as both sides were forced to settle for a point.
FULL TIME | City strike back to claim a point on the road!
— Hyundai A-League (@ALeague) March 16, 2018
It took time for Friday’s match to burst into life, but Jordan Elsey’s crude challenge on the lively Daniel Arzani lit the touch paper.
Five minutes later the defender hauled down Dario Vidosic in the penalty area and was lucky not to see red.
Bruno Fornaroli saw his spot-kick saved by Izzo, though, and Adelaide made him pay just before the break.
A jinking run from Nikola Mileusnic released Nathan Konstandopoulos, his pull back fired into the roof of the net by Absalonsen – a fourth goal in eight league games for the Dane.
Absalonsen was denied a second early in the second half by Dean Bouzanis and he then fired agonisingly wide as Adelaide upped the tempo.
However, Izzo’s failure to deal with Arzani’s left-wing cross presented Mauk with a great chance, the attacking midfielder firing through a crowd to restore parity.
Fornaroli’s close-range finish from Vidosic’s low cross with 12 minutes remaining looked to have snatched all three points for the visitors, but the striker was not to be the hero as the flag denied him a second goal of the season.
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