Sydney FC 2 Adelaide United 2

Alex Brosque celebrated his Qantas Socceroos call-up with a brilliant goal as Sydney FC drew 2-2 against Adelaide United at Sydney Football Stadium.

Alex Brosque celebrated his Qantas Socceroos call-up with a brilliant goal as Sydney FC drew 2-2 against Adelaide United at Sydney Football Stadium.

A pulsating match in which Sydney FC struck the bar three times and Adelaide United had two goal-bound efforts cleared off the line had the 14,233-strong crowd on the edge of their seats from the outset.

Only five minutes had elapsed when Sydney FC hit the woodwork for the first time, Mark Rudan’s shot from a Juninho corner bouncing back off the goal frame.

Three minutes later and Adelaide United grabbed the lead, largely thanks to Nathan Burns. The Qantas Under 23s star ghosted past three Sydney FC defenders before squaring the ball into the path of Richie Alagich, whose strike fizzed past Clint Bolton.

Alagich went from hero to zero inside 180 seconds, fouling Robbie Middleby in the box right under the nose of Mark Shield. Ufuk Talay stepped up to take the penalty and, although Adelaide United custodian Robert Baijic made an initial save, the Sydney FC midfielder put away the rebound from close range.

Sydney FC and Adelaide United went to the half-time break at 1-1 but only because Steve Corica made a miraculous goal-line clearance in the latter stages of the first period to deny a goal to Bruce Djite.

For the second week in a row, Sydney FC coach Branko Culina made a switch during the interval, this time withdrawing club captain Tony Popovic, who had picked up a knock, and introducing Brazilian import Patrick.

The opening ten minutes of the second half was all about one player – Juninho. Sydney FC’s marquee man saw two efforts ricochet off the bar, the first from open play and the second from a curling free kick.

Djite had a glorious chance to score against the run of play for Adelaide United in the 56th minute but, just as was the case in the first period, he could not finish after rounding Bolton. The Qantas Under 23s striker’s shot cannoned off Iain Fyfe’s back.

Brosque and Juninho combined to lethal effect with a quarter of an hour remaining, the Australian striker running on to the Brazilian midfielder’s defence-splitting pass and finishing with aplomb to put Sydney FC 2-1 ahead in an end-to-end contest.

It was a goal worthy of winning any Hyundai A-League match but, unfortunately for Sydney FC, Adelaide United young gun Burns capitalised on some lacklustre defending by the home team just three minutes later to level the scores at 2-2, which is how it finished.

Sydney FC 2 (Ufuk Talay 12′, Alex Brosque 73′)
Adelaide United 2 (Richie Alagich 8′, Nathan Burns 76′)
Date: Saturday, September 1, 2007
Venue: Sydney Football Stadium, Sydney
Referee: Mark Shield
Crowd: 14,233

Sydney FC: 1. Clint BOLTON (gk), 2. Iain FYFE, 4. Mark RUDAN, 6. Tony POPOVIC (captain) (12. PATRICK 46′), 7. Robbie MIDDLEBY, 8. Ruben ZADKOVICH, 10. Steve CORICA, 14. Alex BROSQUE, 15. Terry McFLYNN, 22. JUNINHO (11. Brendon SANTALAB 85′), 23. Ufuk TALAY.

Substitutes not used: 19. Michael ENFIELD, 30. Matthew NASH (gk).

Yellow cards: Ufuk Talay 62′.

Adelaide United: 20. Robert BAJIC (gk), 2. Richie ALAGICH, 4. Angelo COSTANZO, 5. Michael VALKANIS (captain), 6. CASSIO, 10. Nathan BURNS (7. Lucas PANTELIS 79′), 11. Bruce DJITE (9. Paul AGOSTINO 82′), 13. Travis DODD, 15. Jonas SALLEY, 16. Bobby PETTA (17. Isyan ERDOGAN 86′), 18. Robert CORNTHWAITE.

Substitutes not used: 40. Scott HIGGINS (gk).

Yellow cards: Bobby Petta 44′.