Melbourne claim passionate victory

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It really was a game of 90 minutes, 90 emotions as Melbourne Victory snatched a late goal to win 2-1 over Newcastle Jets at AAMI Park on Monday night.

A superb goal from Ruben Zadkovic wasn’t enough for the Jets as Victory striker, Ricardinho, grabbed a 90th minute winner after Carlos Hernandez opened the scoring for the home side in the first half.

Robbie Kruse is surely a shoe-in for Asian Cup selection after another strong performance, this time providing the pass for Ricardinho to score the 90th minute match winning goal for the Victory.

It was only the brilliant solo efforts of Hernandez and Kruse that separated the sides, leaving the Jets a little hard done by after producing an admirable performance worthy of a point.

The Jets started the stronger of the two sides with their midfield, including the returning Kasey Wehrman and Jobe Wheelhouse, controlling most of the early possession and dominating the play.

The home crowd of 16, 378 didn’t have much to cheer about as the Jets forged the best chances in front of goal in the opening stages of what was a passionate and physical match.

The Jets were unlucky not have taken the lead with Wheelhouse, Jeffers and Milicevic all peppering the Victory’s goal in quick succession after consecutive passages of fine interplay.

Hernandez struck a cruel blow for the Jets in the 20th minute when he turned two defenders and hit a thunderous low drive into the bottom right corner of the goal to give the Victory the lead against the run of play.

The goal sparked the Victory back into the match and was enough to see them go in ahead of the Jets at the half time break.

Ruben Zadkovic responded for the Jets in the 54th minute when he hit a screaming half volley, after a nice lay off from Francis Jeffers, past Michael Petkovic and into the top left hand side of the net to equalise.

The Jets continued to stifle the Victory’s play in the second half by restricting space in the midfield and shutting down their opposition fast, though the side in gold never really looked like scoring themselves.

Robbie Kruse spurned a glorious chance to put the Victory ahead late in the match but he failed to execute from a fine pass from Ricardinho after a swift counter attacking move.

Kruse made amends for his earlier miss minutes later when he twisted and turned his way around several Jets’ defenders before playing a pass across goal for Ricardinho to tap home the simplest of winners.

The win was an important one for the Victory as it moved them into fifth spot on the A-League ladder and in strong contention for a finals spot, while the Jets remain in seventh, albeit with some games in hand on rival sides.

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