Newcastle Jets fly high in F3 Derby

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Newcastle Jets have narrowly beaten the Central Coast Mariners at Ausgrid Stadium this afternoon in what turned out to be an exciting “F3 derby” in round three of the Hyundai A-League.

The atmosphere at Ausgrid Stadium was electric as 14,421 passionate, football fans rolled up for what was a a perfect afternoon of football, with temperatures reaching the late 20-early 30s in and around the grounds.

The Jets dominated the Mariners in the first half, with the Mariners attacking on the counter. The Jets showed great showed great determination in applying pressure on the Mariners, particularly in their own half. The second saw the Mariners return a new team, creating multiple opportunities to score, with strong attacking plays by Matt Simon.

The win sees the Jets take the three points moving them into the top four of the series, with the Mariners sharing the bottom of the table with Melbourne Heart.

After a relatively conservative first five minutes, Central Coast Mariners midfielder Michael McGlinchey was able to make a break after being given the space by Jets defender Nicolai Topor Stanley, firing a shot off at goals which was saved comfortably by Jets goalkeeper Ben Kennedy.

The Mariners, who in a 4-4-2 diamond formation, seemed to struggle connecting their passes, which saw few opportunities created within the first ten minutes. The Jets unusual formation of 4-1-4-1 saw ample opportunities created primarily by Jets striker Labinot Haliti. Mariners ‘keeper Matthew Ryan limited Haliti’s chances at scoring for the Jets, beating Haliti to the ball in the 12th and 17th minute.

It wasn’t until the 25th minute when the Jets took control of the match. A sloppy pass from Mariners defender Bradley Porter allowed Jeremy Brockie to poach the ball in what was a beautiful intercept. Brockie expertly beat Mariners defender Rostyn Griffiths, creating space and the opportunity to put the ball past Ryan and into the upper right hand side of the net. A beautiful, textbook goal saw the Jets go 1-0 up within the first 30 minutes.

Matthew Ryan looked comfortable and relaxed as he faced multiple shots on goal and with the teams prepared to go into the locker rooms at half time he got a palm to a cracker of a shot from Haliti in the 36th and shut down Brockie in the 37th.

After a minute of extra time, the teams headed into the locker room with a scoreline that would surely give the Jets some confidence.

The second half fired up with a yellow card handed to Matt Simon as he kicked the ball away in what was a sign of frustration and tempers fraying. Both sides continued to apply pressure, with the Jets managing to maintain a solid defence, especially against set plays by the Mariners.

But the Jets held out for the full 90 minutes, claiming a 1-0 victory over their F3 rivals, a win that will please incoming coach Gary van Egmond.

Newcastle Jets:
Ben KENNEDY (GK), Nikolai TOPOR STANLEY, Tiago CALVANO, Ben KANTAROVKI, Kasey WEHRMAN (C), Jeremy BROCKIE, Ruben ZADKOVICH, Tarek ELRICH, Sung-Hwan BYUN, Labinot HALITI, Ryan GRIFFITHS

Subs: Taylor REGAN, Marko JESIC, Matthew NASH, Ali ABBAS

Coach: Craig Deans (Interim)

Central Coast Mariners:

Matthew RYAN (GK), Daniel McBREEN, Joshua ROSE, Pedj BOJIC, Bradley PORTER, Patrick ZWAANSWIJK, Rostyn GRIFFITHS, Adriano PELLEGRINO, Oliver BOZANIC, Michael McGLINCHEY, Matthew SIMON

Subs: Bernie, IBINI, Troy HEARFIELD, Justin PASFIELD (GK), Adam KWASNIK

Coach: Graham Arnold

‘The Football Sack’ PLAYER OF THE MATCH

3 points: Matthew Ryan
2 points: Jeremy Brockie
1 point: Labinot Haliti

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