The biggest crowd of the 2007/08 Hyundai A-League season saw Sydney FC and Melbourne Victory fight out an enthralling 2-2 draw at the Sydney Football Stadium that ended Sydney’s Premiership hopes but added steel to their Championship resolve.
FT: Sydney FC 2 Melbourne Victory 2.
A season-best crowd of over 33,458 were treated to an exciting, end-to-end, tense clash between two of the A-League’s biggest rivals. WHile the Victory’s season is now over, Sydney FC will line-up in the minor semi-final next week, against either the Queensland Roar or Newcastle Jets, pending the outcome of tonight’s other game. Neither team left anything out on the pitch today, and both teams can walk off heads held high. The match report will follow.
90+3′: One last crack for Melbourne Victory. Sydney FC now have the ball.
90+1′: Archie Thompson had a chance to seal it for the Voctory, but he dribbled too far and into the hands of Bolton.
90′: 3 minutes added on. A goal line scramble, somehow the ball didn’t go in for Sydney FC. A couple of saves, a couple of blocks, bodies everywhere. Tense stuff here at the SFS.
88′: Everyone’s forward for Sydney. Melbourne counterattack, but to no avail.
84′: Rodrigo Vargas is down for Melbourne Victory. The end-to-end game has stopped, momentarily, while Vargas is tended to.
79′: Juninho off, Santalab on. Kosmina’s looking for another wonder-goal from Santalab.
76′: GOAL. Allsopp scores for Melbourne Victory. Thompson makes a break down the right hand side and provides the perfect ball for his strike partner, Danny Allsopp. Allsopp eats those for breakfast, it’s game-on, two-all.
75′: Ward off, Kaz Patafta on for the Victory.
Sydney still need one more goal to move in front of Central Coast on the table. Melbourne will not lie down though.
72′: The sun’s out now. Adam Biddle is getting ready to come on for the home side.
Corica’s been subbed.
69′: The rain has stopped but the football is still slick. Bolton makes a one handed save, from a shot off the boot of Danny Allsopp.
67′: Evan Berger replaces Adrian Caceres.
64′: Scrambling defence from Melbourne Victory prevents Sydney FC from going two goals ahead.
62′: GOAL. Brosque scores for SYdney FC. A through-ball from Juninho is taken into the box by Brosque who beats a number of defenders and slots home, past the diving efforts of ‘keeper Langerak.
58′: Allsopp’s seconf goal of the game is called off for being offside.
The rain is absolutely bucketing down now.
53′: Juninho forces Langerak to make a good save.
52′: A club record crowd of 33,458 is announced as rain begins to fall.
48-: Yellow card to Kevin Muscat.
46-: GOAL. An own goal by Mark Milligan. Nick Ward’s cross defelected by Milligan past Bolton and the scores are level.
HT: Sydney FC 1 Melbourne Victory 0.
Steve Corica-s early goal handed the first half honours to the home side. Both teams have attacked with strong numbers, but the respective goalkeepers have not been troubled on too many occasions. Melbourne Victory have had nine shots on goal compared to Sydney FC-s four.
44-: Sebastian Ryall handed a yellow card for a foul.
37′: Once again Sydney FC counterattack through Juninho. This time it’s Rodrigo Vargas who makes the tackle.
35′: Terry McFlynn’s shot from 25m out flies over the crossbar and into The Cove. At the other end, it’s Carlos Hernandez’s turn, his shot rolls past Bolton’s right hand post.
35′: Both teams have been guilty of turning the ball over too easily.
31′: Juninho makes a fast break down the right hand side, but fails to find the feet of an unmarked Alex Brosque in the centre. Desperate defending from Adrian Caceres.
26′: Rodrigo Vargas heads wide of CLint Bolton’s left hand post.
23′: It’s end to end football here, with each team moving forward in strong numbers, but without luck.
19′: Sydney FC is camped inside Melbourne’s half, looking for that second goal.
14′: Terry McFlynn takes a shot on goal, but easily saved by VIctory ‘keeper Mitchell LANGERAK
Sydney need to win by two goals to overtake Central Coast Mariners in the race to the premiership.
7′: Yellow card to Melbourne Victory’s Leigh Broxham for fouling Juninho 25m out from goal.
4′: GOAL to Sydney FC. A long ball from Milligan was headed into the path of Steve Corica. Corica took the ball into the penalty area and slotted it neatly into the back of the net.
3′: First shot on goal for the game. Danny Allsop worked in behind Tony Popovic but shot straight to Clint Bolton who makes an easy save.
1′: Sydney FC kick off, they are running towards The Cove. Sydney are on the attack straight away through Robbie Middleby down the left flank. He crosses, but Melbourne’s defence clears.
The officials and players are out on the field.
Welcome to the Sydney Football Stadium for the round 21 match between Sydney FC and Melbourne Victory. The players are currently warming up on the sun-baked pitch and the crowd is steadily growing.
Kick off is at 5pm. The starting line-ups have been posted below. Stay tuned for further updates.
Sydney FC 2 (Steve CORICA 4′, Alex BROSQUE 62′) Melbourne Victory 2 (Mark MILLIGAN og 46′, Danny ALLSOPP 76′)
Date: Sunday 20 January, 2008
Venue: Sydney Football Stadium
Referee: Peter O-Leary
Sydney FC: Clint BOLTON, Iain FYFE, Tony POPOVIC (captain), Robbie MIDDLEBY, Ruben ZADKOVICH, Steve CORICA (Adam BIDDLE 73′), Alex BROSQUE, Terry McFLYNN, Mark MILLIGAN, JUNINHO (Brendon SANTALAB 76′), Ufuk TALAY.
Substitutes not used: Brendan RENAUD, Ivan NECESKI (gk)
Yellow cards: Brendon Santalab (82′)
Melbourne Victory: Mitchell LANGAREK, Kevin MUSCAT (captain), Matthew KEMP, Danny ALLSOPP, Archie THOMPSON, Rod VARGAS, Adrian CACERES (Evan BERGER 67′), Carlos HERNANDEZ, Leigh BROXHAM, Sebastian RYALL (Steven Pace 46′), Nick WARD (Kaz PATAFTA 75′).
Substitutes not used: Daniel VASILEVSKI, Michael THEOKLITOS (gk).
Yellow cards: Leigh BROXHAM (7′), Sebastian Ryall (44′), Kevin Muscat (48′)