Melbourne Victory rain on Sydney FC’s parade in opening Big Blue

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The highly anticipated A-League Men’s opener for Sydney FC against Melbourne Victory lived up to its expectations, with the visitors edging Sydney 3-2 in a tight contest.

The energy was high in the brand-new Allianz Stadium as the rain held off just in time for the first Big Blue of the season.

Sydney FC pressed early, showcasing their new strategy to push the ball wide right from the first play of the match.

It took the Sky Blues a good 15 minutes to before they made their first solid movement up the pitch. After some tight work in the box, Patrick Yazbek managed to find the feet of Robert Mak, who secured Sydney FC’s first goal for the A-League Men’s opener.

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Victory made their comeback with a classic cross put in by Ben Folami, straight to Nicholas D’Agostino’s head, which found the back of the net seamlessly between the inside post and the fingertips of Andrew Redmayne.

Despite the setback, Sydney managed to come back well for a couple of chances just before half time, with English Premier League transfer, Joe Lolley, making his first strike of the game which was declined by the post.

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The rain set in over Moore Park as both teams pushed for possession going into the second half. With the ground visibly soaked, conditions evidently became more tiring, initiating some messy play and late tackles from both sides.

The Sky Blues looked to have the upper hand, but their fans were quickly silenced in the 67th minute by a slicing goal from Victory’s fresh substitute, Chris Ikonomidis.

It took just over ten minutes for Sydney FC to make their comeback with a free kick from defender Diego Caballo finding the head of James Donachie to even the playing field once again.

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However, the window of hope for Sydney FC was pulled over in just four minutes with a speedy comeback from Joshua Brilliante, giving Victory the lead once again.

In the end, the Sky Blues tried their best to hold on in a last-minute scramble, with chance after chance declined by their visitors.

Sydney FC 2: (Robert MAK 15’, James DONACHIE 79’)

Melbourne Victory 3: (Nicholas D’AGOSTINO 31’, Chris IKONOMIDIS 67’)

Allianz Stadium

Referee: Chris Beath

Assistant Referees: Anton Shchetinin, Ashley Beecham

Fourth Official: Sam Kelly

Sydney FC: Andrew REDMAYNE (GK), James DONACHIE, Alex WILKINSON (C) (Paulo RETRE 46’), Adam LE FONDRE (Patrick WOOD 77’), Joe LOLLEY (Alex PARSONS 84’) , Robert MAK (Adrian SEGECIC 72’), Patrick YAZBEK (Max BURGESS 77’) ,Anthony CACERES, Diego CABALLO, Rhyan GRANT, Luke BRATTAN

Unused subs: Thomas HEWARD-BELLE (GK), Aaron Gurd

Melbourne Victory: Paul IZZO (GK), CADETE (Noah SMITH 72’), Roderick MIRANDA, Leigh BROXHAM, Stefan NIGRO, Joshua BRILLANTE (C), Rai MARCHAN (George TIMOTHEOU 90’), Jake BRIMMER (Nathan KONSTANDOPOULOS 90’), NANI (Nishan VELUPILLAY 72’), Nicholas D’AGOSTINO, Ben FOLAMI (Chris IKONOMIDIS 62’)

Unused subs: Matt ACTON, Lleyton BROOKS

Featured image credit: Jaime Castaneda

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Neve McGavock
Neve McGavockhttps://everneve.com/
Studying a Bachelor of Journalism and Creative Writing at the University of Wollongong. Covering Sydney FC for the 2022/23 season.

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