Sydney FC has earned a second point in the AFC Champions League group stage against a strong Vietnamese home team Hoang Anh Gia Lai in front of a partisan crowd.
The Sky Blues could have taken all three points were it not for a deflected goal from the home team and two penalty shouts which were turned down.
Sydney FC 1 (Buhagiar 58’) drew. Hoang Anh Gia Lai 1 (Van Thanh 26’)
Moments That Mattered:
NARSINGH PENALTY DENIED – 3’ – Narsingh latches onto a ball forward from Talbot, goes around the back of the tall centre half and goes to ground but the referee waves away calls from everyone for a penalty.
LE FONDRE PENALTY DENIED – 5’ – Le Fondre cuts across the box and is brought down but again the referee favours the home side with the call.
LE FONDRE HEADER OVER – 9’ – A fantastic corner from Retre finds Le Fondre with a bullet header but he connects too well and the ball goes over the bar.
NARSINGH SHOT SAVED – 21’ – The Dutchman cuts inside and fires off a deflected shot which the keeper gets down well to gather.
GOAL VAN THANH – 26’ – Van Thanh shoots from range and the ball takes a deflection and goes into the corner.
REDMAYNE SAVE – 45’ – Dos Santos gets to the byline and pulls the ball back but it deflects off Wilkinson towards goal and Redmayne tips it over sharply.
BUHAGIAR GOAL – 58’ – Caceres crosses to sub Buhagiar to head home with his first touch of the game.
BURGESS SHOT OFF THE LINE – 65’ – A ball to the back post is played back across to Burgess to shoot but a defender clears off the line.
What They Said: Steve Corica: “I’m disappointed not to pick up another three points tonight because we were the better team, we created more chances than them and I believe we should have had two penalties early on in the game.
“Their only chance on 27 minutes was a deflected shot which went in and other than that we played well defensively.
“At 6pm obviously conditions are a little tougher but that’s the same for both teams, maybe they are more used to it than us, but the boys played well and I’m happy with the performance.
“I think we should have had two penalties, that’s why I’m a little bit disappointed.”
Sydney FC remain unbeaten in the AFC Champions League after a battling 1-1 draw against surprise package Hoang Anh Gia Lai.
The Sky Blues will once again feel they should have taken all three points against the fervently backed Vietnamese home club, with the referee waving away two calls for a penalty and a Max Burgess shot cleared off the line.
Both penalty calls came in the opening few minutes of the match with Narsingh and Le Fondre felled, while the strike pair also went close with other chances.
The Vietnamese took the lead against the run of play with a long range strike which deflected and wrong footed goalkeeper Andrew Redmayne.
Redmayne had to be alert later in the first half to stop another deflection going in and it allowed Sydney FC to draw level just before the hour when Buhagiar headed home with his first touch.
Seven minutes later fellow substitute Burgess saw his close range shot cleared off the line and the chance to win it had evaporated in the heat.
Sydney FC: 1. Andrew REDMAYNE, 3. Ben WARLAND, 4. Alex WILKINSON, 5. Connor O’TOOLE, 6. Mustafa AMINI (33. Pat WOOD 85’), 8. Paulo RETRE (32. Patrick YAZBEK 70’), 10. Milos NINKOVIC (22. Max BURGESS 58’), 14. Adam LE FONDRE (12. Trent BUHAGIAR 58’), 15. Luciano NARSINGH (27. Elvis KAMSOBA 70’), 17. Anthony CACERES, 25. Callum TALBOT.
Unused Subs: 20. Tom HEWARD-BELLE (GK), 2. James DONACHIE, 21. Harry VAN DER SAAG, 24. Corey HOLLMAN, 35. Liam MCGING.
Yellow Cards: Talbot 38’, Wilkinson 87’.
Red Cards: None.
Hoang Anh Gia Lai: 26. Huynh TUAN LINH (GK), 3. Kim DONGSU (28. Nguyen VAN VIET 45’), 7. Nguyen PHONG HONG DUY, 8. Tram MINH VUONG (6. Luong XUAN TRUONG 63’), 9. Nguyen VAN TOAN, 10. Nguyen CONG PHUONG (C), 11. Nguyen TUAN ANH (95. Jefferson DOS SANTOS 63), 15. Nguyen HUU TUAN, 17. Vu VAN THANH, 30. Washington DOS SANTOS, 94. Mauricio TEIXEIRA.
Subs: 2. Le VAN SON, 5. Tran HUU DONG TRIEU, 22. Nguyen NHI KHANG, 47. Cao HOANG TU, 66. Le DUC LUONG, 82. A HOANG, 99. Le VAN TRUONG.
Yellow Cards: Van Toan 90’,
Red Cards: None.
Venue: Thong Nhat Stadium.
Referee: Ammar EBRAHIM HASAN MAHFOODH