Wellington finally off the mark with Newcastle win

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An explosive Wellington Phoenix earned their first three points of the season against the Newcastle Jets in a comfortable Guy Fawkes win at Westpac Stadium.

Looking to put their historically poor start to the season behind him, Ernie Merrick rung in the changes after Monday’s 6-1 drubbing to the Melbourne Victory.

Alex Rodriguez and Louie Fenton started for the home side whilst Marco Rossi was restored in the heart of defence.

The game started as every other has for the ‘Nix in 2016/17 with frantic pressure seeing them dominate the opening exchanges.

Unlike the rest of their campaign however, their hard work resulted in the opening goal.
Kosta Barbarouses saw his 21st minute shot spilt directly into the path of Roy Krishna and the striker tapped home for his second goal in five days.

Replays would go on to show Krishna was half a yard offside, though justice was served in a matter of moments.

Roy Krishna was brought down in the area for what should have been a clear penalty.

Referee Shaun Evans waved the appeals away leaving Krishna furious. He wouldn’t have to wait long for his second however.

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Being played in after another terrific run by Barbarouses, Krishna finished comfortably past a hapless Jack Duncan for his third goal in five days. And that’s how it would stay for the first half, Phoenix well worth their 2-0 lead.

The second half began just as the first ended, the ‘Nix dominant in possession.

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Rodriguez, who was given a starting berth ahead of the ever-present Roly Bonevacia, looked a picture of composure in the heart of midfield, dictating the tempo expertly throughout.

The Jets could never really find their rhythm going forward and as the game progressed their patience began to wear thin.

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Andrew Hoole was given a yellow card for a rash challenge on Fenton.

When they did finally have the ball in the back of the net, Wayne Brown was rightly called back for offside, the closest they would come on the night.

No goals were to come in the second half, leaving the Phoenix with their first points of the season.

A fantastic attacking display was rewarded by rapturous applause by the home crowd, who will be hoping for more of the same as the season progresses. Wellington face Central Coast Mariners in Gosford next week, whereas the Jets head back across the ditch to play Melbourne City.

Wellington Phoenix 2 (Roy Krishna 21’, 41’)
Newcastle Jets 0

Westpac Stadium

Referee: Shaun Evans
Assistant Referee 1: Simon Lount
Assistant Referee 2: Sarah Jones
Fourth Official: Matthew Conger

Wellington Phoenix: 1. MOSS Glen 2. JACOB Tratt 7. FINKLER Guilherme (4. BONEVACIA Rolieny 81’) 8. RODRIGUEZ Alex 9. BARBAROUSES (11. WATSON Hamish 90’) Kosta 10. MCGLINCHEY Michael 13. ROSSI Marco 16. FENTON Louis 17. LIA Vince 19.. KRISHNA Roy 22. DURANTE Andrew (c)
Substitutes: 5. Ryan Lowry 12. 14. RUFER Alex 20. ITALIANO Lewis (gk)

Newcastle Jets: 20. DUNCAN Jack (gk) 4. BOOGAARD Nigel (c) 3. HOFFMAN Jason 6. UGARKOVIC Steven 8. POLJACK Mateo 7. HOOLE Andrew 10. VUJICA Ivan 13. 16. COWBURN Nicholas 19. MORTEN Nordstand 28. KOUTROUMBIS John
Substitutes: 9. KOKKO Aleksandr 15. NABBOUT Andrew 40. FOGARTY James 23. CLUT Devante 27. DE GODOY Caio

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