Le Fondre at the double as Sydney FC cruise past City
There was no FFA Cup Final 2018 hangover for Sydney FC, who cruised to a 3-0 victory over Melbourne City at AAMI Park on Friday night.
Paulo Retre’s smartly-dispatched opener sent the Sky Blues on their way before Adam Le Fondre’s second half double wrapped up a convincing Sydney FC performance.
It was the third match in six days for the reigning Hyundai A-League Premiers, who were edged in the FFA Cup Final 2018 by Adelaide United 72 hours earlier.
But Steve Corica’s men showed no signs of weariness in Melbourne and nailed their title ambitions to the mast with a dominant performance against one of their fellow Premiership contenders.
The win is Sydney FC’s sixth consecutive against City in the Hyundai A-League and places the Sky Blues on top of the table after the first match of Round 3.
After retaining the same starting eleven who beat Western Sydney Wanderers in Round 2 and fell to the Reds on Tuesday, it was a case of business as usual for Corica’s men in the first half.
The Sky Blues were sharp from the off and opened the scoring inside fifteen minutes when Retre readjusted swiftly to divert Rhyan Grant’s driven cross through the legs of Melbourne City gloveman Eugene Galekovic.
A mesmeric penalty area exchange between Le Fondre and Milos Ninkovic nearly saw the visitors double their lead on the cusp of the break, but the Englishman hit a tame effort at Galekovic.
However, Le Fondre would find the net in style early in the second stanza, dinking the ball over Galekovic after a lovely interchange between Grant and Retre.
And it got even better for the Sky Blues’ arch-marksman, who sealed an impressive double with a tidy close range finish in stoppage time.
The 31-year-old has now scored seven goals in six competitive matches for the Harbour City club, and tonight became just the third Sydney FC player after Dwight Yorke and Joel Griffith to score in each of his first three Hyundai A-League appearances.