Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Perth on brink of premiership glory after Sydney draw

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 13 Apr 2019

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Sydney FC opened the door for Perth Glory to clinch the A-League premiership after drawing with rivals Western Sydney Wanderers.

Second-placed Sydney needed to win the derby to prevent Perth from securing the plate with victory over Newcastle Jets on Sunday, but they were pegged back in a 1-1 draw.

The visitors led inside seven minutes as Alex Brosque slid a pinpoint finish into the bottom-right corner, but the Sydney captain appeared to pick up an injury in scoring and was moving uncomfortably for the remainder of the first half.

Wanderers could have equalised before the break as Mitchell Duke saw a low effort blocked and his follow-up saved by Andrew Redmayne, before Brosque finally departed at half-time.

In their skipper’s absence, Sydney could not hold on and Alexander Baumjohann’s free-kick deflected off Adam Le Fondre and wrongfooted the goalkeeper.

The unmarked Oriol Riera headed against the post with Wanderers chasing a winner, and Redmayne denied Raul Llorente as Sydney clung to a point that should not deny Perth.

Elsewhere, superb goalkeeping displays from Eugene Galekovic and Paul Izzo saw Melbourne City and Adelaide United share the spoils.

Both City and Adelaide look set to make the Finals, with a remarkable collapse required to fall short now, but each missed the chance to seal their spot on Saturday.

Kearyn Baccus clipped a fine effort against the post after just two minutes and then Izzo expertly repelled Shayon Harrison’s drive.

Adelaide ended the first half on top, though, and substitute Nikola Mileusnic – on for the injured Jordy Thomassen – saw a strike deflected against the upright, before Galekovic pulled off a smart double-save.

It was all City following the restart and Izzo tipped a Harrison Delbridge header onto the crossbar and a low Jamie Maclaren shot against the post.

Craig Goodwin almost pinched the points as Galekovic kept out a 20-yard free-kick at full stretch, but Izzo was required once again to divert a low cross away from Riley McGree.

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