Sky Blue streak ends at 14 after wonder goal

An inspirational performance from Newcastle Jets substitute Tara Andrews has sunk Sydney FC to their first defeat in 15 Westfield W-League matches with the Sky Blues going down 2-1 at Campbelltown Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

An inspirational performance from Newcastle Jets substitute Tara Andrews has sunk Sydney FC to their first defeat in 15 Westfield W-League matches with the Sky Blues going down 2-1 at Campbelltown Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

The unbelievable run for the Sky Blues looked to continue after Sydney held a 1-0 lead, earned from the strength and skill of Leena Khamis, up until the 84th minute when Andrews scored the first of two world-class goals.

In the 89th minute, Andrews held her nerve and hit the target from halfway after Sydney FC goalkeerp Dimi Poulos came a long way to clear a ball, but it fell straight to the substitute.

It was a tight affair in the opening 10 minutes with both sides unable to penetrate strong defences. Newcastle were not allowing Sydney FC to have any time on the ball which forced the Sky Blues to play predominantly around the midfield, unable to deliver the final ball for their prolific strikers Khamis and Kyah Simon.

Simon had the first shot on target with a frustrated ping from outside the area on 13 minutes, but keeper Allison Lipsher had no trouble stopping the effort.

Sydney-s quick movement and clever vision around midfield almost payed dividends when Simon forced another, alas more difficult, save from Lipsher after 20 minutes of play. The Jets keeper showed quick reactions to get down low and block the shot.

Neither team could find the deadly final pass they desperately searched for after working hard in the midfield on a hot afternoon. Sydney opted to play with a deeper defence than their fellow New South Wales counterparts, and the league leaders happily let Newcastle pass the ball around, the back four holding a rigid shape and defusing any potential attacks.

The reigning champion-s hard-work on and off the ball was eventually rewarded in the 31st minute when Khamis dispossessed Gema Simon inside the area and held her composure to beat a helpless Lipsher at the near post.

Captain Heather Garriock went close to doubling Sydney-s lead not long before half-time, with a rocket shot at the end of a swift move flying just over the crossbar.

Sydney went into the break with a well deserved 1-0 lead, although they were kept on their heels as Newcastle did their best to limit the amount of possession Sydney could enjoy. Their domination in midfield has been the backbone to the Sky Blues blistering start to their title defence, and plugging their dynamic midfielders was seen as the way to beat them in the eyes of Jets coach Wayne O-Sullivan.

The Jets defence began to look tired as the second half wore on, and Sydney took advantage of their extra player in the midfield, controlling the play and looking comfortable in possession. Despite their dominance the Sky Blues failed to really test the Newcastle keeper, and not capitalising on this period of play proved costly.

Sydney FC was shocked in the 84th minute when Poulos was lobbed by a spectacular shot from Andrews. The tall substitute brought pandemonium among the Jets players and staff with the stunning goal to equalise the match.

15-year-old Caitlin Foord had a golden opportunity to regain the lead for Sydney when she found herself one on one with Lipsher, but she shot agonizingly over the bar.

Unbelievably, Andrews topped her first goal with a miraculous attempt from halfway in the 89th minute after Poulos came a long way out of her box to clear a ball. Unfortunately for Sydney, her clearance only managed to find the energetic Andrews on the half way line, and her audacious effort managed to find the target and skid out of reach from Poulos to put Newcastle in the lead.

The two-wonder goals from Andrews were a telling blow for Sydney who looked to be comfortably on the way to their 15th straight win.

Match Details:

Sydney FC: 1 (KHAMIS 31′)
Newcastle Jets FC: 2 (ANDREWS 84′, 90′)

Sydney FC line-up: 1. Dimi POULOS (gk), 2. Teresa POLIAS, 3. Danielle BROGAN, 6. Servet UZUNLAR, 7. Heather GARRIOCK (c), 8. Renee ROLLASON (13. Catherine CANNULI 61′), 10. Kylie LEDBROOK, 11. Lydia VANDENBERGH, 15. Teigen ALLEN, 17. Kyah SIMON, 19. Leena KHAMIS (9. Caitlin FOORD 80′).

Substitutes Not Used: 18. Samantha SPACKMAN, 20 Erin HERD (gk).

Yellow Cards: 8. Renee ROLLASON 43′.
Red Cards: Nil.
Goals: 19. Leena KHAMIS 31′.

Newcastle Jets FC line-up: 1. Allison LIPSHER (gk), 2. Hannah BREWER, 3. Hayley CRAWFORD (c), 4. Nicole CROSS, 5. Gemma SIMON, 6. Renee CARTWRIGHT (14. Carlie IKONOMOU 78′), 8. Amber NEILSON, 9. Sasha McDONNELL (17. Alexandra HUYNH 82′), 12. Melissa FEUERRIEGEL, 13. Thea SLATYER, 16. Kate HENSMAN (7. Tara ANDREWS 71′).

Substitutes Not Used: 20. Alison LOGUE (gk).

Yellow Cards: 8. Amber NEILSON 27′.
Red Cards: Nil.
Goals: 7. Tara ANDREWS 84′, 90′.

Referee: Kirralee GARDENER at Campbelltown Sports Stadium