Bobo brace leads Sydney to victory

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Sydney FC defeated Wellington Phoenix in their home opener by 3 goals to 2. A brace from striker Bobo and a goal from Michael Zullo was enough for the champions to claim three points in a lively encounter at Allianz stadium.

However early nerves almost got the better of Sydney as goalkeeper Andrew Redmayne spilled a free kick in his own six yard box in the opening minutes. Thankfully for the champions Wellington were slow to capitalize and the error went unpunished.

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Sydney settled into the match after that early hiccup and should have been awarded for their dominance at the 27 minute mark when Alex Brosque was played through on goal with a beautiful pass from Bobo. The Sydney FC captain must have been thinking of his celebration as he fired inexcusably wide of the target.

Sydney didn’t have to wait much longer as Brosque went from villain to provider minutes later. The skipper received a pass from Ninkovic and deftly played Bobo through into the box with the Brazilian’s finish deflecting off Daniel Mullen and into the net.

The Sky Blues doubled their lead five minutes later as an Adrian Mierzejewski cross from the byline found Zullo alone in the back of the penalty area. The full back’s first time shot was hit with conviction and was too much for Mullen who once again deflected it into his own net.

It was Wellington Phoenix who struck next with Dario Vidosic bringing a long ball down with his chest and onto the path of the onrushing Andrija Kaluderovic. The Serbian hit the half-volley without hesitation and pegged a goal back for the visitors just before the half.

The home crowd were still on their way back to their seats after the break when Sydney scored their third. It was a brilliant Luke Wilkshire cross that found Bobo in the box with just enough space to head the ball home.

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It wasn’t all good news for the champions with new signing Mierzejewski going down with a hamstring injury after 52 minutes. David Carney was brought on as a replacement but the injury will be the last thing Graham Arnold wanted to see ahead of next week’s Sydney derby.

The Kiwis pulled another goal back midway through the half as Dario Vidosic found himself on the end of a Michael McGlinchey cross and brilliantly picked out the top corner with his head.

Both teams traded periods of possession in the dying stages but it will be the visitors who feel harsher done by as Ali Abbas was incorrectly flagged for offside and denied a scoring chance. The former Sydney man seemed to have timed his run perfectly down the wing and found himself with acres of space and no one to beat on the edge of the box.

Replays show that the assistant got it wrong but it won’t matter for Sydney who walk away with three points. 

With that win Sydney FC remain unbeaten at Allianz stadium since April 2016.

Sydney FC 3

Wellington Phoenix 2

Allianz Stadium (11,284)

Referee: Kurt Ams

Assistant Referees: Scott Edeling and Matthew McOrist

Fourth Official: Stephen Lucas

Sydney FC

  1. REDMAYNE Andrew, 4. WILKINSON Alexander, 5. BUIJS Jordy, 6. BRILLANTE Joshua, 7. ZULLO Michael, 9. BOBO, 10. NINKOVIC Milos, 11. MIERZEJEWSKI Adrian, 13. O’NEILL Brandon, 14. BROSQUE Alex, 26. WILKSHIRE Luke.

Substitutes: 8. PAULO Retre, 17. CARNEY David, 18. SIMON Matthew, 22. RYALL Sebastian, 30. HEWARD-BELLE Thomas.

Wellington Phoenix

2. MULLEN Daniel, 3. GALLOWAY Scott, 4. PARACKI Goran, 8. VIDOSIC Dario, 9. KALUDEROVIC Andrija, 10. MCGLINCHEY Michael, 19. DOYLE Thomas, 21. KIRSHNA Roy, 22. DURANTE Andrew, 23. RIDENTON Matthew, 30. SMITH Keegan.

Substitutes: 1.ITALIANO Lewis, 11. WATSON Hamish, 12. PARKHOUSE Adam, 14. RUFER Alex, 17. ABBAS Ali.

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Conan McGlone
Conan McGlone
Football fan, writer, and post-grad journalism student at the University of Technology Sydney. Joined the team in 2017 to cover Sydney FC and the Central Coast Mariners.

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