Wanderers sink Nix for maiden Spotless victory

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The Western Sydney Wanderers have earned their first win at Spotless Stadium comfortably disposing of Wellington Phoenix 3-1.

Riding high after a 3-2 triumph over FC Seoul in the Asian Champions League midweek, the Wanderers started strongly with Jumpei Kusukami worming is way into the box and Jack Clisby working off a shot on target after two minutes.

Japanese midfielder Jumpei at the heart of the action early for the red and black as he rifled a shot onto the post and then directed a shot straight at keeper Glenn Moss from a tight angle within five minutes.

Running rampant in the opening exchanges, Western Sydney made the most of their early pressure with Nicolas Martinez opening the scoring after nine minutes. The unmarked midfielder gifted a chance in the middle of the box after some poor Phoenix defending and converting it expertly to the bottom right past an out-stretched Moss.

After a blistering start from the Wanderers, Wellington were forced to work their way into the contest with Gui Finlker’s off-target free-kick from distance with 37 minutes played the closest they went to a goal in the first 45 minutes.

A dominant Western Sydney on the other hand would grab another goal before half-time with Mitch Nichols finding Brendon Santalab at the top of the box and the striker taking a telling touch to shake off a defender before lashing an effort past Moss on 39 minutes.

Less than five minutes into the second half, the Wanderers made it 3-0 with Santalab heading in his second goal of the night from close range after a Martinez ball across the face of goal.

With 54 minutes played, the red and black stormed forward and despite outnumbering the Phoenix defence, couldn’t add a fourth with Antonis pulling his shot wide after a pass from Santalab.

In the 59th minute the ball fell kindly for Nix striker Shane Smeltz in the box but the number 99 shot straight at Vedran Janjetovic who made his first real save of the match.

Despite not being kept very busy, Janjetovic was picking the ball out his net in the 79th minute after Finkler curled a free-kick from the top of the box into the right of goal.

The Wanderers almost issued an immediate replying minutes later with Jaushua Sotirio finding Jumpei in the box who had his effort blocked before Moss did very well to deny a drilled effort from Scott Neville.

Despite deserving more goals, Western Sydney had to settle for a 3-1 win which cements their spot in sixth with the Nix now five points behind them in seventh.

Western Sydney Wanderers 3 (Martinez 9’, Santalab 39’ 48’)
Wellington Phoenix 1 (Finkler 79’)

Spotless Stadium (7,828)

Referee: Daniel Elder
Assistant Referees: Greg Taylor and Andrej Giev
Fourth Official: Jarred Gillett

Western Sydney Wanderers: 20.JANJETOVIC Vedran, 3.CLISBY Jack, 6.NICHOLS Mitch (16. SOTIRIO Jaushua 77’), 10. MARTINEZ Nicolas, 11. SANTALAB Brendon (23. SCOTT Lachlan 63’), 12. NEVILLE Scott, 14. KUSUKAMI Jumpei, 15. BACCUS Kearyn, 18. CORNTHWAITE Robert, 22. ASPROPOTAMITIS Jonathan, 24. ANTONIS Terry (13. PINATARES Bruno 89’)
Substitutes: 1. TYSON Jerrad, 5. HAMILL Brendan, 13. PINATARES Bruno, 16. SOTIRIO Jaushua, 23. SCOTT Lachlan.

Wellington Phoenix: 1.MOSS Glen, 7. FINKLER Guilherme, 8. RODRIQUEZ Alex (4. BONEVACIA Rolieny 46’), 9. BARBAROUSES Kosta, 12. PARKHOUSE Adam (19. DOYLE Thomas 30’) , 13. ROSSI Marco, 17. LIA Vince, 21. KRISHNA Roy, 22. DURANTE Andrew, 23. RIDENTON Matthew, 99. SMELTZ Shane (11. WATSON Hamish 77’)
Substitutes: 4. BONEVACIA Rolieny, 6. FOX Dylan, 11. WATSON Hamish, 19. DOYLE Thomas, 20. ITALIANO Lewis

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Joshua Thomas
A football fanatic and journalism student who won't leave you wondering about any Wanderers news this season as I cover all things Red and Black for The Football Sack.

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