Friendly matches continue as A-League season approaches
We wrap up all the friendly action as the 2013-14 Hyundai A-League season approaches.
Perth Glory came away the victor in its high profile international friendly fixture in Malaysia overnight, defeating Johor Darul Takzim 2-0 at the Larkin Stadium in Johor Bahru.
Johor Darul Takzim who sit in third place in the Malaysian Super League provided another strong pre-season hit out for the West Australian outfit, in a game that was played with good intensity and in a wonderful atmosphere generated by the vocal and passionate local fans.
Steven McGarry converted a penalty in the 35th minute after Ryo Nagai who was a constant thorn for the locals was felled after following up on a powerful shot from outside the box that JDT goalkeeper AL-Hafiz Hamzah failed to hold onto. The exciting Japanese winger had put the ball in the back of the net earlier in the piece but was deemed to be offside by the assistant referee.
Both teams enjoyed strong passages of play with JDT particularly early in the encounter failing to capitalise on some good chances. In the 8th minute striker Safee Sali was put through on goal by team mate and national captain Safiq Rahim but rather uncharacteristically put in a very poor attempt on goal.
Safiq Rahim also went close from a set piece in the second half with Danny Vukovic tipping a curling free kick headed for the top left corner over the bar. And the Glory custodian was called on to do similarly to a Nunez attempt not long after.
Glory doubled their lead at the death with 21-year-old Ndumba Makeche continuing his good run of pre-season form. The young striker who was unmarked had the relatively simply task of knocking in a header from close range following a knock on from a corner kick.
After much pre-game hype, star JDT recruit, former Inter Milan, Villareal and Argentine legend Pablo Aimar failed to make his debut, in what was the only downside to what was otherwise a competitive encounter played in good spirit.
Adelaide United-s scored an 8-1 defeat of local Premier League club West Torrens Birkalla at Hindmarsh Stadium.
Fielding a strong first eleven from the start, which included Socceroos duo Eugene Galekovic and Dario Vidosic after they both returned from their two week break, the Reds led 5-0 at half time before finding the back of the net another three times in the second 45 minutes.
Striker Bruce Djite scored the game-s opening two goals and finished with a hat-trick as he was given a full 90 minutes by Coach Josep Gombau. Spaniard Sergio Cirio chimed in with the Reds- third before Jeronimo Neumann struck twice within 60 seconds to give United a handful by half time, although United did not have it all their own way as Birkalla had their moments.
Of the starting line up, only Djite and Jon McKain remained for the second half as Gomabu made a host of changes at the break. The Reds boss got the chance to have a look at former Melbourne Victory midfielder Theo Markelis in action, while there was also a host of youngsters from the AIS that were introduced, Dylan Smith scoring a second half double.
Nigel Boogaard and Antony Golec took up the central defensive duties in the second half as John Hall replaced Galekovic in goal, Birkalla eventually finding a way through when Scott Nagel drifted in down the left to latch onto a cross and tuck the ball away.
Newcastle Jets played out a 2-2 draw with Bonnyrigg White Eagles at Bonnyrigg Sports Fields on Wednesday night.
The Jets attacked from the outset, with a number of attacks in the first half that were close to finding the mark but could not break the deadlock.
Jets skipper Ruben Zadkovich brought a spectacular save out of Nash on the 37th minute, when his audacious chip from the edge of the area forced the keeper to dive backwards and tip the ball over the crossbar.
Mark Birighitti made his first meaningful contribution of the contest when he was forced to make a great diving save to deny former Adelaide United striker Robbie Younis.
Bonnyrigg came out firing after the interval, applying plenty of pressure to the Jets- defence and forcing Birighitti to make a couple of saves early in the half.
The sustained pressure eventually paid dividends for the home side in the 50th minute, with Aaron Peterson putting them ahead with a tap-in finish after latching onto a cross in the Jets- six-yard box.
The Jets got back on level terms in the 85th minute, with Virgili finishing calmly after latching onto a perfectly weighted through ball from Ben Kantarovski.
Almost straight after the ensuing restart of play, the Jets hit the front. Taggart broke the offside trap before squaring a pass across the face of the goal to Virgili who stroked the ball into an empty net.
However, it was Bonnyrigg who had the last laugh, Nikola Zonjic heading the ball home from a free-kick after being left unmarked at the back post to make it 2-2 in the 89th minute.
Sydney FC made it a hat trick of wins on its Italian tour with a 1-0 victory over A.S. Cittadella at the Stadio Comunale Picchi in Jesolo today.
A first half goal to former Serie A trialist Vincenzo Italiano was enough for Sydney FC to defeat a youthful A.S. Cittadella side that sat back in defence and tried to hit the Sky Blues on the counter attack.
Coach Frank Farina rested the majority of his squad for the match with Terry McFlynn, Pascal Bosschaart, Vedran Janjetovic and Mitch Mallia joined by youngsters Jacob Tratt, Daniel Petkovski and Josh MacDonald as well as four trialists.
The Sky Blues struggled to gain control of the match in the first 10 minutes as A.S. Cittadella sat very deep in defence, forcing the Sky Blues to work hard to fashion any openings but with McFlynn and Bosschaart leading the way they soon grabbed the initiative.
MacDonald and Mallia both had chances before trialist Vedran Niksic rattled the post in the 30th minute with a curling left foot shot. Three minutes later in one of its first forays forward A.S. Cittadella won a penalty only for Sydney FC keeper Janjetovic to save the spot kick, which was blasted straight down the middle.
Sydney FC then scored the opening goal of the game in the 35th minute when Petkovski beat a defender down the left hand side and put in a hanging cross for Italiano to volley home from the edge of the six-yard box.
The sides went to the break with Sydney FC holding a 1-0 lead and Farina sent the same 11 back out for the second half and the Sky Blues held the initiative and controlled possession for large periods without being able to break down the stacked A.S. Cittadella defence.
Farina made a glut of substitutions on 60 minutes with McFlynn, Tratt and Migliorini withdrawn while Alessandro Del Piero entered the field to another rousing reception in the 66th minute, replacing the lively Niksic.
The introduction of Del Piero ignited the crowd and also sparked Sydney FC as Mallia and MacDonald both had opportunities saved before Del Piero almost brought the house down when he struck the crossbar direct from a corner with the goalkeeper beaten in the 78th minute.
The final 10 minutes saw the Sky Blues pepper the A.S. Cittadella goal as the game was played around the edge of the Italians- penalty area but Sydney FC could not add to its single goal, running out 1-0 winners.
The Western Sydney Wanderers got another pre-season win after knocking off Canberra Olympic 3-1 in the nation's capital.
Labinot Haliti put the side from Sydney's west in front after 13 minutes after a through ball saw him one on one with the Canberra Olympic keeper, Angelo Konstantinou.
A Wanderers error saw Mark Shields equalise in front of 2000 home fans who rounded Wanderers keeper Jerrad Tyson and found the back of the net.
The Wanderers changed nine players at the half with new signing Tomi Juric giving the visitors back the lead with under ten minutes to go in the match.
Mark Bridge put the game beyond doubt as the match was drawing to a close to give his side a 3-1 victory.