Smeltz smash topples Wanderers in Sydney Derby

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A 90th minute volley from Shane Smeltz saw a conservative Sydney FC claim bragging rights over Western Sydney Wanderers in a 2-1 win at Pirtek Stadium in a tense but truncated derby.

In a tense but truncated derby the visitors made away with all three points. The opening session however was stained red as Western Sydney, spurred by the RBB, choked their rivals out of the game.

Sydney would quickly have to play defense (a marked trait of their night) as Dario Vidosic plucked a ball down to his feet snapping his shot just wide of Janjetovic’s post for the opening chance.

Sydney continued their defensive role as Castelen was played in enticingly by Scott Neville allowing the Dutchmen to go one on one with Janjetovic in the 18th, only to have his shot ripple the side netting, much to the disbelief of the home crowd.

The Wanderers midfield was in fine chorus providing their attacking line with a variety of chances while dictating the passage of play. Dario Vidosic again finding himself in a dangerous position as his lofted header forced Janjetovic to tip over the bar.

Yet for all Sydney’s offensive impotence, against the rhythm of play Filip Holosko found a breadth of field to push onto the home goal earning the visitors a corner. Matt Jurman would make the right decision to turn the deep ball back into the mix and finding Jaqcues Faty who headed in for only his second goal for the Sky Blues, putting his side in the lead in the 22nd.

Strebre Delovski showed his passion for control after waving down an offside call by the linesmen on the near side allowing Mitch Nichols a free course on goal, only for the Sydney keeper to again deny the ever pressing home side.

With the visitors in the lead the remainder of the half played out equally as the two teams entered the sheds with plenty more to give.

The second half saw the derby ferociously set alight as Romeo Castelen picked out Dario Vidosic unmarked on the left flank in the 58th. The number ten made no mistake, curling his placement out of reach into Janjetovic’s far side to square the derby at one apiece, whipping Pirtek Stadium into a frenzy.

Substitute Kearyn Baccus paired up with Nichols in the 78th to slip the Sydney defense only for Janjetovic again to deny the home side searching for a late game winner.

Substitute Shane Smeltz capitalised on a loose ball floating in the Wanderers box, firing it past Redmayne to send the traveling Cove into ecstasy.

2-1 it remained at the whistle, the Sky Blue’s drawing level on the ladder with their cross town rivals after the 11th Sydney Derby. The Wanderers have now failed to win a derby in six attempts.

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George Vlotis
UTS Journalism graduate and football fanatic. Ex-NSW premier league player and now fortunate enough to be reporting on the A-League. Sydney is Sky Blue. Follow me @VlotisGeorge

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