The Sydney FC Academy had an exciting 2-2 draw against St George, with the Sky Blues scoring two late goals to salvage a point an ensure that they remain within touching distance of the top of the table. As per the Sydney FC Academy way, they continue to give youth a chance and the opportunity to shine in a tough and competitive league.
One of the top performers of the night was 20-year-old Nathan Paull, who was named Man of the Match for his exceptional performance and scored in the 85th minute to begin the turn-around. Central defender Paull has been getting better every week and showed his class and composure on the field and was rightfully awarded the MOTM honour.
Also on the scoresheet was 17-year-old born Bailey Callaghan, who scored his first NPL goal in just his second match for the club. Kealey Adamson, 19 years old, who had good attacking involvements in the second half, assisted Callaghan’s second goal and directed his header inches wide of the far post late in stoppage time which could have won all three points.
Goalkeeper Adam Pavlesic also had a great game, making a good save early on to keep the team in the game but was unfortunate to be sent the wrong way for the St George penalty.
Despite Adrian Segecic seeing his penalty saved brilliantly, the squad fought back in the second half and were deserving of the point agaist the newly promoted side who are punching above their weight.
19 year old Matthew Scarcella came off the bench in midfield and made an immediate impact as he was able to create several opportunities for the team and was crucial in helping them secure the draw.
Earlier on Sunday afternoon, the U20’s won 3-0 with 19-year-old Ben Gibson scoring a double, while 18-year-old Luka Smyth added a goal of his own. What will be most pleasing to Academy Coaches Howard Fondyke was the manner in which the goals were scored with two of them coming from quick passing moves in and around the final third.
16-year-old Richard Nkomo (left back) also made his U20’s starting debut, showcasing the depth and talent within the Sydney FC Academy.
Speaking on the 2-2 draw to Football NSW, Jimmy van Weeren was very pleased with the mentality of his young team.
“I am extremely proud of the boys to come from 2-0 down,” he said.
“The boys were resilient to stay in control when 2-0 down. We think obviously that we can win any game at any point and we try to have our players understand that.
“The boys are proving that they can more than compete in this league and we have some young players scoring goals.
“Next week we face Wollongong Wolves and they are capable of scoring goals. David Carney obviously played here so it will be an exciting game.”
Watch all Sydney FC Academy Fixtures on NPL.TV