Christmas comes early for Melbourne City in derby

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The biggest game of the A-League season lived up to expectations as Melbourne City got out of jail, narrowly beating Victory 2-1.

On a humid night at AAMI Park, Victory fans were left scratching their heads as to how they did not pinch at least an equaliser in the second half.

It was Victory who pressed early though, and Besart Berisha almost opened the scoring after the 15 minutes with Thomas Sorensen tipping the ball over the bar.

City then asserted themselves and the form they’ve shown in recent weeks. Just after the 20th minute Ben Garuccio’s run made Kosta Barbarouses and Jason Geria look ordinary as his cross found Stefan Mauk to make it 1-0 to the Red & White.

Ten minutes later chaos in Victory’s box had Aaron Mooy wreaking havoc with his through ball to Bruno Fornaroli snuffed out before it landed to Paulo Retre who doubled the lead.

On the brink of halftime Victory pulled one back, Fahid Ben Khalfallah’s cross found Besart Berisha to make it 2-1.

 

The Red & White weathered a second half storm and with 15 minutes remaining Erik Paartalu came close to killing off the Victory, however his effort hit the post.

With ten minutes remaining there was pandemonium in the box as Ben Khalfallah’s precision shot struck the post.

Archie Thompson’s long awaited return could have been a fairytale however his shot was saved from Finklers corner. There was mayhem in the box as the rebound landed to Daniel Georgevski whose shot was cleared off the line by Mooy.

Berisha looked certain to equalise, putting the ball over Sorensens head, his touch proving too heavy and the angle too acute.

Thomas Sorensen was by the far the man of the match in a thrilling performance by the Danish goalkeeper, Victory will wonder how they did not pinch at least a point or three.

Melbourne City continue their fine form, taking a valuable Melbourne Derby scalp and all three points to sit third on the A-League ladder

Melbourne City: 1. SORENSEN Thomas, 5. FRANJIC Ivan, 6. PAARTALU Erik, 8. MOOY Aaron, 9. NOVILLO Harry (3. HUGHES Aaron 86’), 18. RETRE Paulo (10. KOREN Robert 72’), 19. GARUCCIO Benjamin, 21. MAUK Stefan (15. WILLIAMS David 58’), 22. CLISBY Jack, 23. FORNAROLI Bruno, 24. KISNORBO Patrick

Melbourne Victory: 1. VUKOVIC Danny, 2. GERIA Jason, 5. GEORGIEVSKI Daniel, 6. BROXHAM Leigh, 7. FINKLER Guilherme, 8. BERISHA Besart, 9. BARBAROUSES Kosta (10. THOMPSON Archie 76’), 13. BOZANIC Oliver (22. MAKAROUNAS Jesse 66’), 14. BEN KHALFALLAH Fahid, 16. MAHAZI Rashid (24. DENG Thomas 55’), 17. DELPIERRE Matthieu

Attendance: 23572

 

 

 

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Clement Tito
Currently studying at Deakin University in Melbourne, Clem has experience writing on AFL and has worked at Preston Leader Newspapers in Victoria. He loves reporting, spectating, discussing and playing both AFL and football.

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