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Victory prevail in seven-goal thriller

MELvADESergio Cirio’s hat-trick was not enough for Adelaide United on Saturday, as the Reds succumbed 4-3 to Melbourne Victory in an enthralling contest at AAMI Park.

Both Melbourne and Adelaide came into the match with back-to-back wins, and their good form was reflected in the starting lineups. Gui Finkler replaced Kosta Barbarouses in the side that defeated Thailand’s Muangthong United last weekend in Geelong, while Tarek Elrich came into Adelaide’s first team for the absent Michael Zullo.

The hosts got off to a terrible start as Adelaide took the lead after just three minutes. Running onto an Isaias through ball, Ferreira laid a pass across the goal which went behind Djite, but was met by an oncoming Cirio, pouncing in front of an unaware Galloway to slot it home.

It looked to be all United in the opening minutes, but the Victory were level just ten minutes later when Boogaard, after coolly playing his way out of trouble, inexplicably passed straight to Broxham. The resulting play saw the ball fed to Finkler on the edge of the box and after his first touch forced it up into the air, the Brazilian volleyed a low shot past a diving Eugene Galekovic.

Adelaide searched for a response and when Ferreira’s 21st minute shot glanced heavily off a Melbourne defender, it seemed destined for the bottom corner, but Coe made a good save at full stretch. The Victory ‘keeper was again called into action three minutes later when he had to smother the ball away from an oncoming Ferreira.

Match Details Full match details »

Melb. Victory

Goal15′ G.FinklerYellow Card39′ P.ContrerasGoal56′ G.FinklerGoal66′ A.ThompsonYellow Card74′ N.AnsellGoal75′ K.BarbarousesYellow Card90′ N.CoeYellow Card90′ S.Galloway


Goal3′ S.CirioYellow Card13′ B.DjiteYellow Card25′ J.McKainGoal45′ S.CirioYellow Card47′ O.MalikYellow Card64′ M.MarroneGoal83′ S.Cirio

It was then Victory’s turn to attack, as Finkler fed James Troisi who cut inside onto his left foot and released an effort that Galekovic did well to save low to his left.

But the visitors wouldn’t be denied and found themselves in front again just before half time. Djite managed to outmuscle Ansell and turn a perfectly-weighted pass to Cirio, who showed great composure to chip over an oncoming Coe to make it 2-1.

There was further concern for Melbourne in the 50th minute when Rogic came off with an apparent ligament sprain in his ankle.

Substitute Barbarouses made an immediate impact when his dangerous ball across goal was just outside the reach of Thompson.

Victory, however, would gain the equaliser from the resulting play. Finkler collected the ball on the by-line and fed it back to Broxham, who glided into the box as he went past two defenders. Finkler was on hand to take control of the ball, and the midfielder swivelled and struck a low shot from close range that nestled in at the near corner.

The game’s pivotal moment arrived in the 66th minute, and is one Galekovic will want to quickly forget. The Reds ‘keeper came rushing out of the box to clear a Melbourne long ball but completely misjudged his kick and gifted Thompson the easiest of goals.

Both sides had appeals for penalties in the 72nd minute but Kris Griffiths-Jones waved away their respective appeals.

It did not matter for the Victory, who scored their fourth just two minutes later. A counter attack initiated by Barbarouses saw Finkler shoot straight at Galekovic, but the rebound fell to Troisi who rounded the keeper and cleverly passed across goal for Barbarouses to tap it in.

Adelaide refused to lie down, though, and Cirio took advantage of a Contreras slip in the box in the 82nd minute to complete his hat-trick, and pull the score back to 4-3.

The Reds continued to press for the rest of the match but Victory hung on to claim all three points, and third position on the A-League table.

About the author

avatarJulian is a freelance writer and editor, film festival programmer, and serial podcaster.

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  • britesparke

    What a game! Thoroughly enjoyed two great attacking teams go “toe to toe” and it was a great shame that a draw was not the result as both teams deserved something for their efforts. This site (Ultimate A-League) is truly the best there is for everything that is the A_League and I would like to congratulate and thank all concerned that are associated with this great site. Keep up the good work!

  • britesparke

    Go Wanderers! Another win under the belt. I was beginning to wonder whether Popa’s rotation policy was a good idea – such a selfish supporter am I that expects the best team to be fielded every time!