The Western Sydney Wanderers have thrown away a shot at the FFA Cup with a pathetic 2-1 loss at home in Sydney tonight.
Hayden Foxe rotated his starting lineup, introducing Jonathan Aspro, Jumpei Kusukami & Jacob Melling, and the newly introduced players looked well off the pace. It was Aspro at fault for the opening goal. After Baccus poked the ball away from Johan Absalonsen towards Aspro who made a complete mess of an attempted clearance, swinging at the air then knocking it into the path of the Danish attacker, who pounced on the loose defence to thread the ball around Vedran Janjetovic.
The goal set the fuse on a powder keg, with Roly Bonevacia for the Wanderers & Isaias Sanchez for Adelaide both extremely lucky to have remained on the pitch, with Bonevacia hammering the back of an Adelaide player with his studs & Isias coming in with a harsh revenge tackle on Bonevacia. It was far from the only flashpoint in the match either, as Aspro found himself fortunate not to have been given 2 yellow cards in the space of a minute, and Jacob Melling escaping with the sanction of a foul for a horror two footed lunge as he raced Jordan Elsey to a loose ball.
Oriol Riera should have continued his goalscoring streak 5 minutes after the break, as he finally recieved a decent cross from the wing. He leapt above the Adelaide defence and with a practically open goal to aim for he fired the bullet header wide.
Daniel Adlung doubled the visitors advantage upon the hour mark, as the Wanderers defence backed off Adlung unleashed a rocket from 25 meters out that curved from outside the line of the goal, crashed into the far post and rippled the goal netting.
70 minutes in and Wanderers substitute Brendon Santalab won a penalty after being taken down by Isaias. Santalab took the penalty he earned and gracefully tapped the ball home panenka style to make it 2-1.
With Hayden Fox having taking off Riera who was the only real Wanderers aerial threat, they were reduced to the same glacial back & forth wasting of possession that marked their dismal performances of last season. Baccus, Herd, Bridge & co recycled possession side to side and back to the central defence, Cejudo was reduced to no look flicks & tricks that failed to penetrate the Adelaide 5 man backline and the home side made precious few chances. Late on the Wanderers won a corner that even Vedran Janjetovic went up for, but it was all for nothing. The Wanderers finished the game 60% possession but just two shots on target, one of which was the penalty.
Adelaide United progress to the final of the FFA Cup for the second time in their history, and they will face last years beaten finalists Sydney FC. The game has for me, cemented the fact that the Wanderers will leave Foxe back in his previous coaching role when they do determine who they will sign full time, and that figuring out who should get the nod needs to happen by the end of the week.