Bulls claim narrow win over Phoenix

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Macarthur FC secured a vital 2-1 victory against Wellington Phoenix on Sunday afternoon at Campbelltown Sports Stadium.

Wellington took the lead through Bozhidar Kraev before Ulises Davila and Moudi Najjar turned the scoreline around.

The Phoenix got off to the best possible start, hitting the front within four minutes. A ball played over the top centrally split the Macarthur defence wide open with Oskar Zawada able to set up Kraev to his right who sent a low volley past Filip Kurto.

The Bulls began to work their way into the match, holding the ball higher up the field before the half-hour mark.

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Macarthur’s pressure paid dividends in the 33rd minute as they found the equalising goal. Ulises Davila wriggled his way through several challenges in the box and fired a low left-footed effort that squeezed under Oliver Sail and rolled into the goal.

The action didn’t stop there with Wellington awarded a penalty following a collision between Macarthur winger Daniel Arzani and David Ball. Zawada stepped up and sent a powerful side-footed strike towards the bottom right corner that Kurto got a strong left hand to.

The drama continued just a couple of minutes later as the Phoenix were given another opportunity to score from the spot following a VAR review on Kearyn Baccus’ challenge on Kraev. Yan Sasse took responsibility this time around firing an effort towards the bottom left corner, but Kurto pulled off another top save to deny Wellington a halftime lead.

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It was an imposing start to the second half from the Bulls and the side picked up an early goal. Jed Drew’s original shot from inside the box spurned out to the right for Najjar who passed home from close range.

Macarthur continued to apply pressure on the Wellington backline with halftime substitute Al Hassan Toure earning the hosts a penalty in the 57th minute. Davila took it, aiming towards the left side, but saw Sail repel his shot.

Wellington began their search to get back into the game with several chances flying high and wide over the next 15 minutes for the side.

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The hosts went close to extending their lead in the 75th minute. Ali Auglah who had only just come onto the pitch forced Sail to acrobatically tip the ball over the crossbar with an effort from the edge of the box.

Najjar had a late goal caulked off for the Bulls, but it didn’t matter in the end with Macarthur claiming all three points to reignite their fight for finals football, while despite the defeat, the Phoenix hold onto sixth.

Macarthur FC 2 (Ulises Davila 33’, Moudi Najjar 49’)

Wellington Phoenix 1 (Bozhidar Kraev 4’)

Stadium: Campbelltown Sports Stadium

Referee: Alireza Faghani

Assistant Referees: Kearney Robinson and Greg Taylor

Fourth Official: Hassan Jomaa

Macarthur FC: Filip KURTO (GK), Tomislav USKOK, Jake HOLLMAN, Ulises DAVILA (C), Kearyn BACCUS (Daniel DE SILVA 58’), Ivan VUJICA, Moudi NAJJAR, Aleksandar SUSNJAR (Oliver JONES 73’), Jed DREW (Ali AUGLAH 72’), Matthew MILLAR (Jake MCGING 81’), Daniel ARZANI (Al Hassan TOURE 46’)

Unused subs: Nicholas SUMAN (GK), Bachana ARABULI

 

Wellington Phoenix: Oliver SAIL (GK), Steven UGARKOVIC, Timothy PAYNE, Oskar ZAWADA, David BALL (Oskar VAN HATTUM 72’), Bozhidar KRAEV, Lucas MAURAGIS (Sam SUTTON 64’), Alex RUFER (C) (Nicholas PENNINGTON 72’), Callan ELLIOT, Joshua LAWS, Yan SASSE

Unused subs: Alexander PAULSEN (GK), Finn SURMAN, Benjamin OLD, Nikko BOXALL

 

Feature Image Credit: Macarthur FC

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Timothy Gibson
I am a student currently studying a Bachelor of Journalism/ Bachelor of Laws while writing football match reports and feature articles.

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