Sunday, 5 July 2015

REVIEW: Northern NSW NPL Round 12

The Jaffas started the better of the two sides and almost had the first chance of the game when John Majurovski stole the ball from Weston keeper Tim Pratt. Unfortunately for Majurovski he was ruled to have fouled the keeper in the process. Lambton keeper Brad Swancott was required to make a superb save not long after.

The first goal of the game wasn't far away with Weston's routine goalscoring Garry McDermott slotting one past Swancott and putting the Bears into an early lead. The Bears handled some pressure from Lambton and would go on to score a second when Swancott was on the back end of a swinging Wilson Edwards shot that caught him unaware. 

The keeper put his hand out to stop the ball but it deflected into the net. An embarrassing looking goal to concede for the Lambton keeper but one that I thought was swinging away from him late on. The Bears scored another from the spot not long after. Their attacker was brought down and Nathan Morris made no mistake from the spot.

Lambton had the last real chance of the first half as a glancing header smashed against the post, much to the relief of Weston keeper Tim Pratt. The Bears went in with 3-0 lead a half time and a deserved lead at that. 

The Jaffas started well in the second half and scored an early goal when Jobe Wheelhouse rose above the pack to head one goal. They had another good chance not long after but were only able to blast it straight into Tim Pratt. An easy save for the Weston keeper. A second goal would come as Luke Remington blasted one into the net.

Weston were looking shaky and amazingly the equaliser would come as Pratt was left stranded as the ball hit the post and fell to the feet of Majurovski who teed up Jobe Wheelhouse allowing the former Jet to smash it into the back of the net.

The Jaffas looked the better side throughout the second half and it paid dividends when John Majurovski smashed home a header to put the home side into the lead for the first time, much to the delight of the Arthur Edden Oval crowd. 

They'd hold on for a memorable come-from-behind 4-3 victory and one that lifts the Jaffas above Weston on the table. A very exciting game to watch but I mightn't sit in the grandstand next time as all seven goals were scored at the Northern Hill end of the ground. 

In the lower grades, Lambton won 1-0 in the 22's whilst Weston's top of the table 19's stretched their lead atop the table with a 2-0 win.

NEWCASTLE JETS YOUTH 2 def. South Cardiff 1

It was a fairly important result at Ulinga Oval as the Newcastle Jets Youth won in front of several A-League players and of course new head coach Scott Miller. The young Jets had been wayward as of late and this win lifts them away from the bottom of the table although making finals is going to be a tough ask.

It's a disappointing loss for South Cardiff and one that leaves them four points from safety. The situation is dire now at Ulinga Oval and looking at the Gunners' schedule for the last month or so of the season I'm going to go ahead and say that next week's game against Charlestown City is do or die for their 2016 NPL hopes.

The Under 18 Emerging Jets prevailed 3-1 winners in the 22's whilst in the 19's, it was a shock 5-1 defeat for the Emerging Jets 16's as they went down to a much improved South Cardiff outfit.

EDGEWORTH FC 3 def. Hamilton Olympic 1

The Match of the Round ended with another big win for the in-form Edgeworth Eagles. After the massive news that they drew Melbourne City in the FFA Cup during the week, the Eagles celebrated somewhat by handing Hamilton their first loss of the NPL season and taking top spot from Olympic.

Edgeworth took a two goal lead into the break with goals to Aiden Brice and Brody Taylor and whilst Jacob Bailey gave Olympic an early second-half goal to re-install hope, Brice would score another mid-way through the half to seal Edgeworth's biggest win of the season.

I've made it known how impressed I've been with Edgeworth recently and the results just keep on coming for the high-flying Eagles. They play a decent brand of football and have a great mixture of youth and experience. Their 22's are top of the table and their 19's are doing well too. It's certainly a good time to be an Eagle in the NPL.

The Eagles were supreme in the lower grades as well with their top of the table 22's recording a 3-0 clean sheet and their 19's recording a 3-1 victory.

BROADMEADOW MAGIC 3 def. Maitland FC 0

After a month of poor results in the NPL, Broadmeadow have finally bounced back to form and in style as well with a 3-0 win over the Maitland Magpies. Kale Bradbury added two more goals to his season tally whilst Peter Haynes also got his name on the scoresheet. The win lifts Magic to within two points of the top four.

Maitland's recent form had been impressive but now they will definitely face an uphill battle if they want to make the finals. The good news for Maitland though is that they're all but safe from relegation, in my opinion.

It was a tough day at the office for Maitland as they also went down 4-0 in the 22's and 5-0 in the 19's. I heard their keeper was injured badly in the 22's so wishing a very speedy recovery for him.

Adamstown Rosebud 0 def by. CHARLESTOWN CITY 1

If there's ever been an important result for Charlestown City it's definitely this one. The 1-0 win over the Buds lifts Charlestown four points clear of South Cardiff and as mentioned earlier I can't see the Gunners regaining that ground if they don't win against the Blues next week.

Adamstown's finals hopes took a dent but with Weston losing they're six points outside the top four, still doable but they'll need some wins. I'm prepared to call next week's South Cardiff v Charlestown game one of the matches of the round as two relegation-threatened sides put it all on the line. Charlestown will be full of confidence after recording a clean sheet against the Rosebuds.

The Under 22's produced the only draw in all 15 NPL matches this week, tying at 1-1. In the 19's, Adamstown were the 2-1 victors.


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