Records all round for Sydney FC as they brush aside main title rivals

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Melbourne City have followed closely behind the league leaders all season, but were visibly unprepared for Sydney FC’s strong message sent to the rest of the competition on Saturday afternoon.

Melbourne City came into their seventh match for the season on Saturday afternoon with promising credentials, which posed a serious threat to last year’s premiers Sydney FC and their quest for going the entire A-League Women season undefeated.

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The Victorian side entered the top-of-the-table clash with four consecutive wins, having conceded just two goals throughout the season and with in-form Hannah Wilkinson at the attacking helm.

But City were brutally put to the sword by the Sky Blues on Saturday, as their impressive run of form came to an abrupt end following a crushing 3-0 defeat.

“It’s disappointing,” said City defender Emma Checker after the match. “Obviously we came into the game with much higher expectations in terms of the result and even the standard we played at.”

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City’s second loss for the season extended the gap between them and the Sky Blues to seven points, but was also one that undoubtedly raised a few eyebrows upon Sydney’s continued dominance this ALW season.

Despite fielding an unchanged starting 11 to the one that saw out a 1-0 victory against Adelaide United last week, the Victorians looked powerless in stopping Sydney’s attacking onslaught right from the opening minutes of the match.

City’s defensive trio, consisting of Checker, Tori Tumeth and Winonah Heatley came undone on three separate occasions throughout the afternoon, two of which saw the superb vision of Ally Green and her subsequent long-range passes being finished off by midfielder Rachel Lowe.

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Following Lowe’s first goal on the cusp of half-time, as well as Paige Satchell’s brilliant opener, City were left with a mountain to climb in the second half.

“I think the first half for me was the most disappointing,” said Checker. “I think we struggled to keep the ball, we were frantic and I think we were flat.

“We’ve had some games like that in the first half over the last few weeks and we’ve been fortunate enough that teams haven’t capitalised, but up against a strong opposition like Sydney, you know, they took control of the first half and I think we came back strong in the second half but it wasn’t enough.”

Lowe’s second goal late in the match put City’s hopes well and truly to rest, with the Victorians being left to wonder why they failed to even get a look on goal despite only missing attacker Holly McNamara to international duty, whilst the league leaders have been scoring for fun despite missing their Matildas duo of Cortnee Vine and Remy Siemsen.

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The Sky Blues have now put 18 goals past their last four opponents and are yet to concede a goal from their last seven league outings, meaning goalkeeper Jada Whyman has now equalled Lydia Williams’ previous record for most consecutive clean sheets in an ALW season.

“The clean sheet usually goes to the keeper, they have they’re name with it, but I’d have to say with the amount of defence that these girls do makes my job easier so I’d have to say it’s seven for our Sydney FC keeping clean sheets,” said Whyman.

Both sides will now eagerly await their respective clashes against Brisbane Roar, who have managed just two wins from their first seven league matches.

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Feature Image Credit: Jaime Castaneda

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Jimmy Alexander
Jimmy Alexander
Covering Sydney FC for the 2021/22 A-League season. Studying a Bachelor of Sports Media (Journalism) at Charles Sturt University.

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