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  • Gong Show Rings Up A Draw


    mack

    The Western Sydney Wanderers headed to Wollongong Stadium for the first time ever to take on the Wellington Phoenix and the Nix earned their first point in Wollongong with a flip-flopping 2-2 draw.

    Wellington are based in Wollongong for the A-League season due to the border situation with New Zealand, giving the Wanderers a short bus trip down the coast instead of a long flight. Jordan Mutch and Mitchell Duke have a chance to make their season debuts off the bench having finished their quarantine time in recent days. A win for the Wanderers would catapult them into outright 2nd on the A-League ladder while the Nix were looking to escape their dismal position at the foot of the table. Wellington's biggest personell change was a goalkeeper swap to put Oliver Sail in the net.

    Ziggy Gordon had an early chance from a corner 2 minutes in, the Nix defended it well and turned it away for a corner on the other side and another minutes later that flashed wide of goal. Wellington went up the other end and Rene Piscopo turned Illawarra junior Tate Russell inside out before firing into the 6 yard box to win a corner.

    Wellington took the lead in the 8th minute, they carved the Wanderers open in the middle, leaving a hole in the centre of midfield for Ulises Davila who turned and put Mirza Muratovic in on goal. The striker split the defense, shot into a save from Daniel Margush only to easily pick up the rebound and pass it around the unfortunate keeper for a 1-0 lead.

    The 15th minute saw a flurry of Wellington activity, first Clayon Lewis fired a long range speculative effort from a free kick then Piscopo hammered a curling strike into the crossbar with Margush beaten. Nicolai Muller had the visitor's first shot in a long time with his 21st minute shot over the bar.

    In the last minutes before half-time Muller and Yeboah combined, with Yeboah taking a touch to turn on the ball and shoot hard to force Sail into a diving save. The Wanderers went into the break down a goal, having had a lot of possession but very little to show for it as they failed to break down a full 11 man defensive block.

    The Wanderers had a good chance early in the 2nd half, Ibini reacted first after a loose ball, and with the ball on a tight angle he knocked the ball hard and fast past the keeper but Muller was just out of position for what would have been a tap-in. Oliver Sail had a moment of madness that nearly cost his team the lead with an atrocious throw-out that he released backward in the direction of his own goal but without the power required to cause an own goal. He redeemed himself with a good reaching save from a Muller long shot. Yeboah then turned the ball into the keepers hands from a wide free kick. Davila went into the book for a reckless tackle from behind on Muller.

    20 minutes to play was enough for Carl Robinson to finally make some subs. He bought on Simon Cox & Bruce Kamau with Muller & Ibini coming off. Kamau didn't take long to get into the game, a nice shot from distance that Sail cleaned up neatly. Wellington were quickly attacking the other end and Davilla added to his shot tally with one that went wide.

    Western Sydney finally had a reward for their possession dominance. A planned set piece routine was O'Doherty with a chip to the far post, Baccus volleyed across the face of goal and found Yeboah who had a tap-in of a header that he couldn't miss. Wellington thought they were back on top shortly after with Cameron Waine only for the linesman's flag to deny him with an obvious offside call. Margush was beaten at the near post but rescued by the flag.

    Robinson 3rd & 4th subs, Duke & Mutch were a clear marker of intent to take all 3 points and they took the lead straight away. Simon Cox played it out wide for Wilmering and the fullback launched it into the box and found Kamau at the back stick.

    The topsy turvey game took another twist in the 77th minute as Wellington made the most from a central free kick. A weak cross was nodded back into the mixer and Loius Fenton got enough contact to knock the ball into the goal to make it 2-2. In the 87th both sides emptied their sub windows, the Nix bringing on Ridenton and the Wanderers replacing Wilmering with Aquilina. The Wanderers threw everything at Wellington but couldn't make a final cross or pass stick and the Nix escaped a game they were largely on the back foot for with a point. When the final whistle blew both sets of players went down on the turf to catch their breath after a hectic game.

    The Wanderers next match is against Adelaide United at Parramatta on Saturday February 27th with kick-off at 5:05pm.


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    1 minute ago, CaptainJess said:

    Great little away trip. How the FFA didn’t give a spot to Wollongong is beyond me. 

    Plenty of locals in the stands and a fantastic boutique stadium in a great location. Had that been non-COVID times and an actual Wollongong team, that place would have been packed out. 

    Parking was easy and close, good food and entertainment choices nearby and a beautiful view that maybe tops the Sauce Bottles in Gosford. 

    Just imagine Wollongong and Canberra in the league and the support that they would have received in their communities and from travelling fans. Both very appealing away trips for most NSW based teams and even the VIC’s. 

    Hope it’s not the last time I attend a match there.

    I couldn't agree more. Just shows how out of touch Fox and the FFA were with expansion, and why the league is now battling a **** fight. **** Gallop and the  Lowy's. 

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    Once again we can’t play through teams.

    Resorted to crosses, usually no one far stick(bar the goal), sometimes no one in the box at all. Duke gives us an aerial threat, but we need to be better in the final third. 

    Yeboah looked a lot better. Ibini better as an impact player. 
     

     

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    21 minutes ago, Wanderboy said:

    That north terrace support today (wherever it came from?) went hard from start to finish. Sure, most of their chants were lame, but geez, they never stopped, from start to finish, and even continued after we took the lead. They were good. Paid supporters from Wollongong Uni perhaps? Anyway, kudos to them. They were audible all match

    No. They are supposed to be Mexicans who support Davilla. Sounded great when the WDS4 came over and with only about 3300 fans

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    3 minutes ago, Frankos187 said:

    Once again we can’t play through teams.

    Resorted to crosses, usually no one far stick(bar the goal), sometimes no one in the box at all. Duke gives us an aerial threat, but we need to be better in the final third. 

    Yeboah looked a lot better. Ibini better as an impact player. 
     

     

    Reckon we might see the starting  front 3 of Troisi, Yeboah and Kamau. Especially because its Adelaide we face

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    4 minutes ago, Paul01 said:

    No. They are supposed to be Mexicans who support Davilla. Sounded great when the WDS4 came over and with only about 3300 fans

    Credit where credit is due.

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    8 minutes ago, Wanderboy said:

    Credit where credit is due.

    Just heard the Nix press conference. They were Mexican expats bussed down from Sydney.

    And it was a great banter on screen.

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    11 minutes ago, Paul01 said:

    Just heard the Nix press conference. They were Mexican expats bussed down from Sydney.

    And it was a great banter on screen.

    Great. Doesn't matter where they came from. They were excellent.

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    I didn’t have the same great experience with the venue staff as @Wanderboy.

    Found our seats fine. Had a friend from a bay over come and say hello around 30mins before the game started. We were just chatting and not taking up anyone’s seat or blocking an isle. Had an attendant come over and told them to move on. Nothing wrong with what we were doing, but “COVID” :db:

    I then watched her eye out multiple people in our bay over about a 10min period before going and asking them all to pull out their tickets and check they were in the right seats. 

    Then we had what looked like neutral locals rock up 10mins into the game and complain to staff people were in their seats. Staff climbed over multiple people in a row (great COVID awareness there) to tell people to move, despite there being multiple rows within 5-10 metres with large groups of seats available. 

    It didn’t spoil the night, but just shows a lack of awareness and tact on the part of the venue and staff. And that common sense can’t be applied equally in all situations. 

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    8 hours ago, StringerBellend said:

    Yeboah did ok didn’t he? Put in a lot of effort, Good to see 

    Yeboah is getting confidence back. Its why when he was terrible over the last few months I said it would be a risk moving him on...there is a half decent player in there...

    Edited by Smoggy
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    8 hours ago, Wanderboy said:

    Great. Doesn't matter where they came from. They were excellent.

    When Wellington do get to play back home they should fly a few over there for a game, as a thanks.

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    Dorrans and Troisi provide control and order in midfield. That was missing in the first half. With Dorrans on the pitch we would have won this. But even without him we should have been able to see out that game with a win. Conceding yet again after a standard situation is very disappointing.

    Nice to see Natta, Wilmering, Aquilina, Russell doing what they are doing. Looking forward to Al-Taay at some stage, CR has mentioned him several times in pressers, he can't be far off.

    In contrast, Lesiotis, Grozos, Cancar all have been non events so far. With the high turnover of games over the next four weeks, they would need to be on the bench once or twice at least. If not then I can't see them being at the club beyond this season.

    13 points after 8 rounds is not bad at all. Considering that Dorrans, Ibini, Gordon, Troisi, Mutch, Duke all arrived late, that we had/have three senior CBs out with injury, that Kamau's and Yeboah's pre season was somewhere between choppy and non existent, Mueller missing games because of injury -  it could have been much worse. It seems like the pre-season within the season is coming to an end.
     

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    Mitch Duke must take up the centre forward position,  Muller looked off his game yesterday, Natta will be ready for the big boys next year still to green and the good ball players have taught him some lessons So Tass when he his ready. Also going to be hard to Keep Mutch on the bench showed some good signs yesterday. Hard to pick between Wilmering and Aquilina. Wilmering I think with his left foot crosses.  Russell needs to do some crossing practice also.

                                Duke

                         Muller Troisi  

         Wilmering Dorrans Baccus Russell ?

                Natta McGowan Gordan

                          Margush 

    I think the above is the best team we can put on the park next week, cant wait to see something like our best team up against Adelaide. 

    Reserves: Yeboah, Ibini,  Aquilina, Cox , Mutch, Georgieski , Kamau, James G/K 

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    11 hours ago, btron3000 said:

    Que? We’re only a third through the season and we’re 5 behind the leaders with a game in hand. Plenty of points to be won and dropped by all teams between now and the end of the season.

    And for a team that has a new coach and a whole bunch of new players, we are in a great position to launch a title challenge.

    Consistency is the major issue this season. For us we struggle to put in a consistent 90mins never mind a run of wins.

    Any team that puts a decent run together can finish top this year.

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    13 minutes ago, Smoggy said:

    Consistency is the major issue this season. For us we struggle to put in a consistent 90mins never mind a run of wins.

    This.

     

     

     

    (Most probably going to jinx us here but you get the feeling if we play for 90 min and click we will put on a motza against someone. :D )

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    Mutch took control of the midfield with ease when he came on. If we have one of Dorrans and Mutch on the field at all times we will be in good stead. I thought Natta played extremely well, diffused a lot of very dangerous counter attacks that he probably wasn't entitled to. I'm a big Muller fan, but think Troisi better fits our structure and the way Robbo wants to play with his quick distribution to the front line. Muller is more focussed on keeping the ball himself and beating his man. Really happy with Yeboah. Amazing workrate in attack and defence, strikes on goal with venom. Kamau has an incredible impact off the bench with his pace and agility. Probably worthy of a starting position but more likely to win us games off the bench. Cox's smarts  are more valuable than pace in the first half in my opinion. Duke will have to earn his place in the starting line up which we know he is capable of.

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    Yeboah was good the confidence is back lets hope it carries throughout the season.

    The first 30 minutes of that game we were still waking up zero pressure on the Nix ball handlers, Davila and Piscopo were tearing us apart. When they scored the first goal was absolutely filthy defending from us. There was zero pressure on any of the Nix players in that 15 second interval. Baccus and JOD eventually got control of the midfield but damage was done by then.

    I will take the point. This is a game we could have won but also could have easily have lost the Nix played well and we were lucky it was only 1-0 at half time. Table is looking ok for us, only Perth and Smurfs with games in hand that could hop over us.

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    2 points dropped, we should have won his game and put the Nux away, our defending in set pieces continues to be an issue

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    13 hours ago, Paul01 said:

    Just heard the Nix press conference. They were Mexican expats bussed down from Sydney.

    And it was a great banter on screen.

    Excellent marketing from the Nix, bus a rent a crowd in,  put them in prime position from TV perspective, move the travelling away fans  from that part of the ground (who were a significant number of the total crowd)  into  a corner out of camera shot 

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    2 hours ago, sonar said:

    This.

     

     

     

    (Most probably going to jinx us here but you get the feeling if we play for 90 min and click we will put on a motza against someone. :D )

    It’s been an issue for several seasons now. In previous years it was more to do with fitness but this season I think it’s to do with our game plan. 

    I’ve noticed we have this habit of trying something and then all of a sudden completely moving away from it regardless of whether its working or not. We don’t plug away and stay the course like good teams do who have faith in their systems to get the job done. 

    Our width is the most obvious example. We will spread teams wide and have them backs to the wall for a good 30 mins. Then it’s like we get bored so try and take it up the guts and just undo any positive lead up play to that point. It’s very frustrating. 

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    14 hours ago, Paul01 said:

    Just heard the Nix press conference. They were Mexican expats bussed down from Sydney.

    And it was a great banter on screen.

    They were at the Sydney v Wellington game last week too

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    17 minutes ago, jockman said:

    Excellent marketing from the Nix, bus a rent a crowd in,  put them in prime position from TV perspective, move the travelling away fans  from that part of the ground (who were a significant number of the total crowd)  into  a corner out of camera shot 

    Should have put our Active support behind the Southern goal

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    35 minutes ago, jockman said:

    Excellent marketing from the Nix, bus a rent a crowd in,  put them in prime position from TV perspective, move the travelling away fans  from that part of the ground (who were a significant number of the total crowd)  into  a corner out of camera shot 

    The one thing the flog Talay said was that there were more Wanderers supporters than Nix supporters. Obvious statement but admitted it.

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    So that northern terrace support is a Mexican community support for Davila they started last week. If the below article is accurate its literally he met one person that is Mexican-Australian who put a call out to the community. In the crowd there were lots of jerseys from Mexico, Tigres and Guadalajara .

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/sport/football/a-league/124203456/wellington-phoenix-captain-ulises-davila-feeling-the-love-from-mexican-fan-club

    If anything this proves there is still a large Football community none of the 3 Sydney clubs are engaging with, because these fans are not affiliated with any club but come to support the one Mexican player in the A-league. The Nix gave them all the flags to support the team and they went as group from Sydney it down to the Gong.

     Its like when 7000 Nepalese went down to Canberra to support Nepal against the Roos, how many of them support an A-league team?

    Edited by Sithslayer1991
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    21 minutes ago, Sithslayer1991 said:

    So that northern terrace support is a Mexican community support for Davila they started last week. If the below article is accurate its literally he met one person that is Mexican-Australian who put a call out to the community. In the crowd there were lots of jerseys from Mexico, Tigres and Guadalajara .

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/sport/football/a-league/124203456/wellington-phoenix-captain-ulises-davila-feeling-the-love-from-mexican-fan-club

    If anything this proves there is still a large Football community none of the 3 Sydney clubs are engaging with, because these fans are not affiliated with any club but come to support the one Mexican player in the A-league. The Nix gave them all the flags to support the team and they went as group from Sydney it down to the Gong.

     Its like when 7000 Nepalese went down to Canberra to support Nepal against the Roos, how many of them support an A-league team?

    Perhaps we should tap up Sydney's Scottish community :xnod:

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