Sydney wins bragging rights in ninth Sydney Derby

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The ninth Sydney Derby lived up to all expectations after a miraculous comeback by the Wanderers fell short to Sydney’s attacking force.

The final score was determined at the very end of the match after Sydney FC dropped to 10 men and successfully clinged onto their hopes of a victory, ultimately taking home the bragging rights by way of a 4-3 win.

It looked like it was over for the Wanderers halfway through the first half after an attacking onslaught by the Sky Blues saw them score three goals in a matter of minutes.

It all began with an own goal by Wanderers keeper Ante Covic who tried to push the ball out of a dangerous area only for it to hit the crossbar and rebound directly into the goal.

This began the domino effect of Sydney’s attack and only a couple of minutes later Marc Janko found space in a relatively crowded box to shoot the ball straight past Covic.

Things went from bad to worse for the Wanderers defence who continuously faltered around Janko which ultimately enabled him to score his second goal in this match. As the ball dropped, Brendan Hamill lost sight of the ball which led to Janko scoring.

At this point, one would have thought the Wanderers were certainly written off after three poor defensive mistakes cost them an early lead. But in true Derby fashion, a come back was still on the cards.

Designated free-kick taker Yojiro sent the ball wide but it was thankfully headed back by Hamill to Iacopo La Rocca who with control pushed the ball into the goal.

This seemed to have turned a new page for the Wanderers with Debutant Kerem Bulut pulling the trigger to bring the Wanderers back into the game.

Nikita Rukavystya managed to breakthrough Sydney’s defence and Bulut cleverly pulled back and remained onside to receive the ball and shot it perfectly into the goal. This finished the first half at 3-2 with five goals scored between the two sides, setting the scene for a thriller in the second half.

Bulut was a fresh-addition to the Wanderers side and seemed to be the missing piece of the puzzle. The youngster had the confidence after his first goal to equalise early in the second, shooting from outside the box into the far corner past Sydney’s keeper Vedran Janjetovic.

Following the goal, sheer exhaustion took over Bulut whom on his debut managed to score two spectacular goals after months of not playing professional football and Tomi Juric was brought onto the field in the hopes that he would secure the win for the Wanderers.

The Wanderers unexpected comeback saw Sydney FC clearly feeling the pressure with a number of substitutions made in a matter of minutes with with Janko, Ryall and Naumoff coming off for Antonis, Grant and Smeltz.

The fresh legs of Antonis provided Sydney the ammunition to score the winning goal after an awkward pass by Hamill gave Antonis the ball in the perfect position to score.

Sydney’s Mickael Tavares received his second yellow card in the match after a dodgy tackle from behind and this left Sydney with 10 men on the field in the final minutes of the match. The Wanderers tried to capitalise on this with Yojirio substituted for Haliti who tried to be the attacking force the Wanderers needed to equalise, sending many shots on goal that left the entire stadium on edge.

Yet this was not enough for the Wanderers’ whom after a miraculous comeback weren’t able to equalise in the final minutes which left Sydney FC in the thriller take home the bragging rights from the Sydney Derby.

Western Sydney Wanderers: Ante COVIC, Brendan HAMILL, Nikolai TOPOR-STANLEY, Antony GOLEC (75″ Sam GALLAWAY), Yusuke TANAKA, Yojiro TAKAHAGI (83″ Labinot HALITI), Romeo CASTELEN, Iacopo LA ROCCA, Nikita RUKAVYTSYA, Mark BRIDGE and Kerem BULUT (58″ Tomi JURIC).

Unused substitutes: Dean BOUZANIS and Jason TRIFIRO.

Sydney FC: Vedran JANJETOVIC, Matthew JURMAN, Nikola PETKOVIC, Sebastian RYALL (67″ Rhyan Grant), Alex GERSBACH, Milos DIMITRIJEVIC, Mickael TAVARES, Bernie IBINI-ISEI, Alex BROSQUE, Chris NAUMOFF  (69″ Terry Antonis) and Marc Janko (65″ Shane SMELTZ).

Unused substitutes: Robert STAMBOLZIEV and Ivan NECEVSKI.

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Jessica Csaszar
Jessica joined the team for 2014 covering Western Sydney Wanderers in the Westfield W-League and Hyundai A-League.

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