Jeronimo goal finishes United Jigsaw puzzle

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The Red Army unveil their ‘Jigsaw’ banner before kick-off

Adelaide United’s Red Army set the tone early for their side’s 1-0 win over Melbourne Victory as they unfurled their pre-game banner to reveal Saw puppet Billy and the franchise tagline ‘So you want to play a game?’

Unfortunately for the Victory, Adelaide’s game looked to be ‘Who can foul Marcos Flores the most?’ The former fan favourite was booed with every touch of the ball and the home team obliged their faithful by resorting to tactics bordering on physical assault to keep the playmaker quiet.

The Reds’ first-half performance resembled a horror movie as they hacked away at their opponents, fouling them into submission.

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Adelaide went looking for blood and whenever the chance arose, cynical challenges and late sliding tackles became standard procedure.

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Five cautions were dished out by referee Jarred Gillett in the first half alone with Malik, McKain, Cassio, Ramsay and Jeronimo all finding their way into the official’s little black book.

Adelaide somehow managed to find time between fouls to take the lead with Argentine Jeronimo Neumann popping up to head home an exquisite Vidosic cross in the 43rd minute. Moments earlier, Head Coach Michael Valkanis was sent to the stands by Gillett, leaving United with recently appointed Assistant Sergio Melta on the sidelines.

The second half was relatively more restrained with only three cards displayed however a straight red card shown to Adama Traore in the 76th minute ensured at least one team would end the grudge match a man down.

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Adelaide had the lion’s share of attacking chances in the second 45 minutes but squandered chance after chance to double their lead with Neumann and Vidosic going closest to dealing the killer blow.

At the blast of the full-time whistle Adelaide walked away from Hindmarsh with all three points as their aggressive tactics saw them come out on top, Billy reappearing to bid the visiting fans ‘Game Over’.

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