One point from two consecutive home games is Melbourne City’s return over the last fortnight, but coach Warren Joyce has a chipper outlook after his side came from behind to draw with Western Sydney on Sunday.

A one-goal loss to Sydney FC the week prior ended their four match winning streak to start the season but a glut of opportunities could’ve resulted in a victory against the Wanderers if not for a combination of missed chances, poor finishing and good goalkeeping in the second half.

Yet there’s still more to come from this City team, according to Joyce. Seven goals from their opening four games, four of which were scored by veteran Championship marksman Ross McCormack, Joyce said a lot of his international players are currently below full fitness and the rest of the squad has helped carry the workload.

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“I think Nick Fitzgerald’s done great … we talk a lot about our players who are not playing but if you look at Fitzy and look at Brucey [Kamau’s] contribution or [Osama] Malik and people like that, the young Aussie lads are giving everything they possibly can for the football club. They deserve some credit really.

“Some of the players unfortunately, Ross included and Marcin [Budzinski] – you get them up to a level they’ve not [reached] in pre-season. It’s not like they’re battle-hardened and ready to go, we’re having to introduce them and drip them into the games.

“Marcelo [Carrusca] and Marcin and even Ross – Ross is starting games but he hadn’t done a great deal before he came out here – there’s still more to come from those three.”

That’s where up-and-coming Australian starlets like Fitzgerald, Kamau and Stefan Mauk have come to the fore.

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Kamau won October’s nomination for Young Player of the Season, Mauk’s started each game as the number ten and Fitzgerald has arguably been the most impressive Australian forward so far this season.

Mauk, after managing only 50 minutes in an entire Eredivisie season last year with NEC Nijmegen, has fit in well so far to the City team.

“Stef’s done a great job for the group this season. Sometimes when the other forwards aren’t as fit as they can be he has to do all the workload as well, so that runs the legs off him a little bit,” Joyce said.

“He’s had to sacrifice himself for the team to help forwards who might score a goal or do less work and you need to balance that up. That’s the sacrifice he’s had to make; he’s done it for the team and the group.”

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McCormack had several chances scuppered on Sunday including one from point blank range by goalkeeper Vedran Janjetovic, while Fitzgerald and Kamau both had golden opportunities throughout the game but lacked the final finish.

“Nobody misses goals on purpose, do they?”

“The good thing is we created a lot of chances, that’s a big positive. That’s what you want.”

And they did. 16 shots to the Wanderers’ 11, eight on target to six and a massive 23 crosses to 14, Joyce admitted “the game could’ve been out of sight”.

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Football and Aussie rules commentator, writer and radio host/producer from Melbourne.