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    Taranaki Triple Against Wellington


    mack

    A brace by Brendon Santalab along with goal to Nico Martinez has seen off the Wellington Phoenix 3-1 in a match featuring trademark A-League poor officiating.

     

    Despite starting the game in 8th position, the 3-1 victory sees the Wanderers leapfrog Perth, Newcastle and the vanquished Phoenix to move up into 5th place. Western Sydney should have opened the scoring very early in the match, as the visitors peppered the Wellington goal, hitting the post, then Glen Moss on the rebound, with Santalab's headed finish being ruled out incorrectly for offside.

     

    The Wanderers did not let the disappointment of the poor call keep them down, Santalab getting his name on the scoresheet officially in the 22nd minute after a through ball from Martinez let Santalab take a first time strike that beat Moss at the far post.

     

    Wellington came out in the second half and dominated the play for 10 minutes, only to get hit against the run of play with the brilliance of Terry Antonis unlocking their defence. Antonis played through Santalab and the goal scorer turned provider as he neatly played a pass across the Wellington penalty area for the run of Nico, who couldn't miss from 6 yards out.

     

    Santalab capped off his magnificent performance by picking up his brace in the 64th minute. Antonis took advantage of poor defending from the Phoenix, he strode along the byline before finding Santalab with the cutback. Santalab positively smashed the ball home.

     

    Wellington received another slice of fortune from the referees to pull a goal back, with Baccus judged to have deliberately handled the ball. Shane Smeltz stepped up, scored the goal, then a few minutes later was walking off the pitch having picked up a second yellow card for a soft tackle on the Wanderers goal line.

     

    The next game for the Wanderers is against the lowly Central Coast Mariners, with the final Sydney Derby of the regular season looming large the Red & Black will want to put together back to back performances before facing the unbeaten Sydney FC.

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    Santa Hat trick*, Nico masterclass....Antonios...Smeltz the smartarse sent...great result

     

    Only minor criticism would be that clearly Santa is the man to lead us forward - why run him till the 87th minute?

     

     

     

     

     

    * Hat Trick = 2 + 1 due to blind incompetent *****

    Edited by Horus

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    There was a fluidity, pace and determination about our play today that I have not seen before this season. Just interesting that Mitch did not play. Perhaps his involvement would have seen play slow down more than it did without him.

     

    Antonis will develop into a key player for us. His all-round ability to play deep, tackle and build, but also break with pace through the lines as he did today, will be a major benefit as this season's fixtures became more crucial and congested. Santa put in a huge shift, and was great. Any player who scores 2 out of 3, sets up the 3rd and has one wrongfully disallowed, deserves every plaudit he can be given. Even Baccus was generally very good in hounding, as well as twisting and turning out of defence.

     

    I still think we have not approached the acquisition of a goal-scoring striker in the right way, for a club with significant membership and grand short to mid-term aspirations. e.g. The PR value and financial benefit of a quality and big-name signing prior to the ANZ Debt would have paid back a fair slice of any outlay.

     

    A thorough critical review of player recruitment and retention needs to be undertaken so that next season we do not have the slow and difficult start of this one.

     

    Still, nobody will be complaining if we win every game 3-1 and play as we did in NZ.

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    Very solid game. Always sitting on the edge of my seat even with a 3-0 lead lmao.

     

    Not getting my hopes up just yet. We got excited after beating Adelaide, Mariners and the Jets but collapsed the following weeks against good opposition.

     

    Next week is a must win to carry momentum into the derby and to show it's not just another one off against poor opposition.

     

    Consistency is key.

    Edited by xxBrandonxx

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    Good shift by all of them really. Hamill is not up to playing right back. Made Barbarouses look great. (Barbs didn't penetrate as easily matched against Clisby).

     

    Good result. Let's scrape something from this season.

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    Loved Sotirio when toward the end he looked part of the Mundine fight and shrugged it off getting on with it. Unlike Ballerina Berisha who would have swum on grass like a dying fish. When in Wellington last season called Foxtel to complain we were advertised as the Sydney Wanderers and they changed the ads to WSW. Would rather be 'that Australian club' than Sydney Wanderers anytime

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    Antonis made all the difference tonight, along with a reliable Santa and silky Martinez. Also good games from Clisby and Baccus. We finally looked more threatening in attack and defence was solid even after we went up 3-0. Penalty decision was ridiculous, as was the offside decision for what should have been our first goal.

     

    Decisions still going against us, but we still overcame it to win.

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    What a win! The best we've played all season. So much more positive football. Watched it in the pub with a few fellow forumites. Great company and a win. Life is good :)

    Roll on next sunday....keep the good performance going lads

    Could we hope for 15k at Spotless?

    Game at 5.00pm on Sunday afternoon.

    Good for the kids plus we are playing the Mariners.

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    That would be great Paul. Big crowd and keep the momentum going

     

    That would be great but forecast weather models are suggesting another severe heatwave next weekend with temps in the 40's again. Could keep a few away. Particularly the soft cock portion of our support. I'll be there regardless.

    Edited by Wanderboy

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    Season-best movement in front of ball and a confident Baccus was the difference. Nothing but love for Mitch, but he hides at times (as used to Dario). Antonis was always giving the 6 and 8 a good option and that gave Nico and the overlapping FBs far more space than we've seen in a while.

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    I have to agree about Bacchus. He is turning into our new Andreu. He is really cool on the ball, although he is still inclined to make the odd error.

    Nico was masterclass. As per usual.

    We have to do everything we can to keep this guy.

    As I said earlier in the match day thread, Jumpei is a waste of space. He needs to be cut loose. If he was an Aussie, he would have been bashed from fans by now from pillar to post. Honestly, he offers nothing.

    The rest of the team performed admirably. I don't subscribe to the theory that Mitch Nicholls will have a battle to make the team again. He has been our rock this season. I'm glad he was rested, and the way we played tonight he may very well himself have carved up. Small rotations are good. The rest will be a benefit for him. ACL coming up so there will be more of this.

    Good to see that Popa gave Bruno a short run again tonight. He may end up being invaluable come ACL time.

    Finally, and one small negative..........I wish Cornflakes would stop putting long balls through. Seriously, he has no idea and they always end up in No Man's Land.

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    Highly competent performance by all he ran on the ground at NP today. Hardly redemption for our slow start this season but with 7 points out of 12 available in the last four games maybe the corner has been turned.

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