Socceroos in the A-League: Maclaren scores five in Melbourne Derby to remember
Five Jamie Maclaren goals highlighted Melbourne City's decimation of bitter rivals Melbourne Victory, in a 7-0 Melbourne Derby win at AAMI Park on Saturday night.
Andrew Nabbout kick-started the scoring spree with a goal scored off the outside of his boot from a slender angle before the same City man was clattered by Adama Traore in the 30th minute, leading to the straight-red dismissal of Victory's matchday captain.
Down a man and a goal, Victory's troubles quickly worsened when Nabbout sent Maclaren to the penalty spot to score his first of the night, after Jacob Butterfield's clumsy challenge in his own penalty box.
City piled on five more goals after the break, thanks to the injection of Marco Tilio off the bench and into the contest. Tilio assisted Maclaren's second before winning the penalty to send his striker to the spot to bag his hat-trick with fifteen minutes to play.
Fellow City substitute Stefan Colakovski provided the assist to Maclaren's fourth before Tilio forced a turnover in the instant aftermath from the resulting kick-off, leading the ball into Luna's path to set Maclaren up for five one minute later.
With his fifth goal secured, the Socceroos striker put his side 6-0 up - the same scoreline Patrick Kisnorbo's side dealt Victory in Matchweek 11. But City wanted more, and didn't have to wait long to get their seventh on a record-breaking night at AAMI Park. After Maclaren had netted a goal in both the 84th and 85th minutes, Luna found the top corner off Tilio's assist in the 87th to wrap up his side's momentous Melbourne Derby win.
The 7-0 result gave City an aggregate of 13 goals to zero against Victory for the 2020/21 campaign, and sent Kisnorbo's team to the top of the A-League table.
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Melbourne Victory went into half-time a man down and two goals down. But before the chaos unfolded, the away side sent the first two genuine chances goal-ward, threatening to take an early lead in the Melbourne Derby.
Callum McManaman flashed a curling attempt from outside the box toward the top right corner on two minutes - The strike from the left side of the park looked set to trouble Tom Glover before the ball bent too far to the right and past the post.
Ben Folami was the first-half casualty for Brebner's side, coming off in the 33rd-minute to accomodate defensive support in Brandon Lauton after Traore's dismissal on the half-hour mark. But early in the half Folami showed potential to click Victory into gear in the final third, breezing past Scott Galloway down the left flank to find Jake Brimmer with a cut-back cross, resulting in a shot which bristled the side netting.
Two minutes later, City cast Victory's bright start aside by going ahead through a phenomenal Nabbout strike. The City forward took the ball down the left wing, sizing up Storm Roux and beating his man down toward the byline.
It seemed as if Nabbout was shaped to cross as he struck with the outside of his right boot, but the flight path sent the ball looping over Matt Acton, hitting the right-hand goalpost and dropping over the line.
GOAL: Nabbout - City start the derby with a screamer
A late challenge from Traore on Nabbout produced a straight red card from referee Chris Beath with 30 minutes on the clock.
Nabbout beat Traore to the ball on the right wing, and in an attempt to collect the bouncing ball Traore stuck the studs of his boot into the hip of the City man. A red card was given and VAR upheld the decision as Victory were reduced to ten with an hour on the clock.
Maclaren was busy throughout the opening half, coming short and darting in behind to collect balls both to feet and out into space in a display which showcased his varied attacking qualities. Not long after Traore was dismissed, Maclaren put his name on the scoresheet thanks to another piece of impactful play from Nabbout.
While Brebner readied Lauton to come off the bench to reinforce his Victory defence, midfielder Jacob Butterfield ventured out to the left flank to momentarily fill the void. Nabbout identified the stop-gap, and took the ball to Butterfield on a dribbling run into the box.
Butterfield brought Nabbout down and a penalty was awarded, which Maclaren buried with deadly precision.
GOAL: Maclaren - Socceroo bags another as Victory are in trouble
It was all one-way traffic after the break, as City pressed on to take full advantage of their one-man ascendancy. Craig Noone missed the chance to make it three, meeting Maclaren's volleyed cross from the right-hand post to the other which the Englishman hit on the wrong side of the upright from close range.
Noone was replaced by Marco Tilio 63 minutes into the game, and just one minute later the young substitute assisted Maclaren's second goal of the night with a curled cross met with a decisive header from the City striker.
GOAL: Maclaren - City running away with it
In his last two outings off the bench for City, Tilio scored the winning goal against Wellington Phoenix before winning the penalty which set Maclaren up to snatch City a point in a 1-1 draw against Sydney FC last time out. And after assisting Maclaren's second goal against Victory, the teenager sent his teammate to the spot once more to seal his hat-trick on the night.
Tilio won the spot kick after Jake Brimmer came sliding in on the corner of the box. Tilio beat his man and went down under considerable contact, and a penalty was awarded. Maclaren sent the ball past Acton once more to put City four goals ahead.
GOAL: Maclaren - Jmac gets his hat-trick
City led 4-0 with a quarter of an hour to play, and with a one-man advantage and all the running it seemed Patrick Kisnorbo's side would press on in an attempt to equal the 6-0 scoreline dealt to Victory earlier in the 2020/21 campaign.
Eventually, City went one better. The home side piled on three more goals in a four-minute spell, as Maclaren bagged his fourth and fifth before Luna made it 7-0.
Maclaren netted his fourth from a headed assist from Stefan Colakovski, before fellow substitute Tilio won the ball back instantly from kick-off to find Colakovski once more, who fed Luna, who found Maclaren to apply the finish.
GOALS: Maclaren - Quick-fire-double from the striker makes it 6-0
Victory were reeling as City equalled the 6-0 margin they notched in Matchweek 11, but before the visiting side could come to terms with the result their opponents made it seven on 87 minutes.
Tilio was involved again in what was a brilliant second-half cameo, leaving Brimmer and Roux for dead on the left flank to find Luna on the edge of the box, who took one touch before burying his strike into the top-left corner.