Jets finally secure first A-League victory

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The Newcastle Jets have finally recorded their first win the of the season with a late Jeronimo Neumann goal sealing a 2-1 victory over Adelaide United at Hunter Stadium on Friday night.

The Argentinian’s 81st-minute strike from short range sank his former club and newly-crowned inaugural FFA Cup winners after Jets coach Phil Stubbins told Jeronimo to “go and be the hero”.

The victory eases the pressure on the Englishman and Stubbins said he was “elated” to get his first victory after failing in his previous ten attempts.

“It’s one win, but what a win,” Stubbins said.

“I’ve been involved in football a long time and this is as good as a feeling as what I’ve had in the game.

“I just congratulated the boys and told them that they were certainly magnificent in representation of the Newcastle Jets shirt.”

It looked like the Novocastrian faithful were set for the all too familiar heartbreak of letting a lead slip after former Jet Craig Goodwin cancelled out Scott Neville’s 49th minute goal.

Defeat to Jets would have seen them become the second team in A-League history to fail to score a win before Christmas but it was the 28-year-old Neumann who was giving out the gifts.

“I said to Jeronimo ‘go and be the hero’ before he went onto the pitch and he provided that. For him to score against his own club I think will feel special for him,” Stubbins said.

“But I don’t really want to mention any individual players because I think as a team performance it was as good as we’ve put together.”

Despite enjoying 66% possession the Reds looked sluggish and fatigued following their 1-0 victory over Perth Glory in the FFA Cup final on Tuesday night.

The best chance of the first half fell to Jets winger Andrew Hoole who headed a David Carney cross straight into Eugene Galekovic.

The deadlock was broken just after half time when Neville stabbed home a Zenon Caravella free kick that was headed on by Newcastle centre back Adrian Madaschi.

Goodwin made it 1-1 in the 70th minute when he superbly met a James Treggo cross at the back post following some enterprising play from substitute Awer Mabil.

David Carney was again a star for the home team and he provided the through-ball for Jeronimo to slip the winning goal past Galekovic.

Adelaide coach Josep Gombau said he was proud of his team’s effort and performance despite the tough run of fixtures they faced the last seven days.

“Friday to Friday we played three games and normally when we lose the ball we press hard to try to recover it as soon as possible and tonight the pressing was there but not fast enough,” Gombau said.

“With the ball we played well but we didn’t have the speed we normally do and this is because mentally and physically we are a bit tired.

“But we did well, I’m not unsatisfied with the players and they tried everything but it’s not easy to play in two competitions.”

The Jets remain in 9th place on the A-League ladder but just three points outside the top six, however Stubbins says the team must keep taking it one game at a time.

“For us we’re focusing every week on the next game and it looks next week we’ll be without Edson Montano due to a calf injury,” Stubbins said.

“It’s another setback we’ll have to deal with and I thought he was excellent tonight and a powerful figurehead.

“We’ve got a game next week and we’ll be focusing on that but we’ll certainly enjoy the win tonight.”

The Jets will look to make it back to back win next Saturday in Melbourne but will face a stiff challenge against the Victory while Adelaide United travel to the Sydney Football Stadium to face Sydney FC.

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