The Melbourne Victory have completed a thrilling come-from-behind victory over the Central Coast Mariners in Gosford, winning the game 3-2.

The match began fairly competitively and even, with both sides having chances and a fair share of the ball.

The best chance of the half for the Victory came in the 14th minute to Raul Baena when the ball fell to him inside the box and forced a save out of Kennedy.

Following that, though, the Victory were the second-best team. They weren’t first to the loose balls, they weren’t creating chances, and were heavily outnumbered in shots 14 to three by half-time.

For the seventh time this season, the Mariners scored the opening goal of the match, and on this occasion, it was a screamer from Andrew Hoole.

In the 18th minute of the match, Hoole curled a stunning free-kick into the top left corner, leaving Lawrence Thomas with no chance.

Embed from Getty Images

The Mariners continued to dominate the chances, with Connor Pain and Matt Millar causing trouble for the Victory defence.

Lawrence Thomas was forced into a top-class save in the 35th minute of the match when Jacob Melling hit a great shot first-time on the half volley, which was destined for the top right corner.

Article continues after this

The Mariners continued to pressure the Victory and in the third additional minute of stoppage time, lighting struck twice for the Mariners with Andrew Hoole scoring another stunning free-kick to give the Yellow and Navy a two-goal lead.

Hoole shaped as if he was going over the wall and into the top right corner, but instead curled one into the top left again.

The Mariners too a two-goal lead into half-time, but that was shortly halved when James Troisi scored his fourth goal in his last five matches in the 50th minute.

Half-time substitute Elvis Kamsoba burned Aiden O’Neill for face down the Victory left wing before squaring it up for James Troisi, who curled it into the bottom right corner.

From here the Victory started to look like the team in second on the ladder and not last, creating much more than they offered in the first half.

In the 69th minute, the Melbourne Victory levelled the score after the Mariners made a meal of clearing the ball. After multiple deflections, goalkeeper Ben Kennedy made one last-ditch effort to make a save, and in the process pushed the ball over the goal line.

The Central Coast started to get themselves back into the game but without any real attacking threat. The heavy fixture schedule appeared to have a larger effect on the Mariners as they tired very quicky and looked lethargic. A combination of fatigue and the eagerness to hold onto a point resulted in a lack of players moving into forward positions for the Yellow and Navy.

In the 88th minute, a Troisi through ball found Kosta Barbarouses running down the right hand side. Receiving the ball at full pace, he cut inside onto his left foot, beating Jonathan Aspro, and curled it home into the bottom-left corner.

Embed from Getty Images

Troisi’s goal turned out to be the killer blow for the Mariners, as the Melbourne Victory completed their comeback.

The result sees the Melbourne Victory close the gap to ladder leaders Perth, who they face next weekend. For the Mariners, the gut-wrenching loss sees them remain on the bottom of the ladder.

Central Coast Mariners 2 (Hoole 18′, 45+3)

Melbourne Victory 3 (Troisi 50′, Kennedy OG 69′, Barbarouses 88′)

 

Central Coast Stadium

Crowd 5,223

 

Referee: Kurt Ams

Assistant Referees: Andrej Giev & Kearney Robinson

Fourth Official: Benjamin Abraham

VAR Official: Jarred Gillett

 

Central Coast Mariners: Ben KENNEDY (GK), Aiden O’NEILL, Jonathan ASPROPOTAMITIS, Kye ROWLES, Matt MILLAR, Jacob MELLING (Michael MCGLINCHEY 89’), Tom HIARIEJ, Andrew HOOLE (Tommy OAR 72’), Connor PAIN, Jordan MURRAY (Jem KARACAN 53’), Matt SIMON (c)

Unused subs: Adam PEARCE (GK), Jack CLISBY,

Melbourne Victory: Lawrence THOMAS (GK), Terry ANTONIS, Thomas DENG, Leigh BROXHAM, Corey BROWN, Carl VALERI (C) (Anthony LESIOTIS 44’), Raul BAENA (Georg NIEDERMEIER 85’), Joshua HOPE (Elvis KAMSOBA 46’), James TROISI, Kosta BARBAROUSES, Kenny ATHIU

Unused subs: Matthew ACTON (GK), Ola TOIVONEN

 

 

SHARE
Media student at Macquarie University. Loves everything football (well, except Italian's diving since '06).