Adelaide United
Sydney FC
Hyundai A-League R18
Coopers Stadium
2016-02-05T08:40:00+00:00
Attendance
11,785

Reds, Sky Blues in thrilling draw at Coopers Stadium

A first-half goal flurry, including a Sergio Cirio brace, saw Adelaide United and Sydney FC play out a thrilling 2-2 draw at Coopers Stadium on Friday night.

Cirio got the hosts on the board in the opening two minutes before Matt Simon equalised with a neat diving header in the 37th minute courtesy of Filip Holosko's fine pass.

Cirio bagged his second in the 45th but the Reds' joy was short-lived when the Sky Blues again drew level, Holosko going from supplier to scorer to silence the home crowd.

Both sides had a fierce crack in the second half, predominantly played on Sydney's terms, but neither camp was able to land the decisive blow despite some genuine chances.

The Blues earned the moral points, avoiding a third successive defeat and snapping United's four-match winning stretch but undermanned Adelaide nevertheless remains undefeated since November.

GOALS

1-0 (Cirio 2')

Stefan Mauk's clever cross enticed Seb Ryall into an uncertain clearance, which caught a neat deflection of Cirio and past Sydney keeper Vedran Janjetovic for an early Reds strike.

Reds players celebrate after Sergio Cirio scored against Sydney FC at the weekend.

1-1 (Simon 37')

Three minutes after being yellow-carded, Matt Simon got away from Dylan McGowan and, diving forward, expertly nodded home the equaliser into the bottom left corner on the back of Filip Holosko's magnificent assist.

2-1 Cirio (45')

Bruce Kamau expertly weaved and danced his way through four stationary Sydney ball-watchers in the area and spotted up Cirio at the top, who nicely put away his second goal of the evening, despite Janjetovic's outstretched glove glancing a piece of it.

2-2 Holosko (45+3')

With Mickael Tavares determined to deny United possession in the build-up, Milos Ninkovic found Holosko with a deft chip and the Slovakian striker looped it over Jordan Elsey's attempted challenge, literally seconds out from the half-time whistle.

KEY MOMENT

The Blues were doing the majority of the attacking after the hour-mark and very nearly prevailed at the death when Ninkovic's effort curled inches away from the back pocket in the 89th minute.

Ninkovic had Eugene Galekovic covered but the Serbian midfielder narrowly missed the top corner, which would have handed Sydney the three points.

Milos Ninkovic.

BACK TO THE DRAWING BOARD

The introduction of Marcelo Carrusca just after the hour-mark should have paid immediate dividends for the home side when the Argentinean playmaker delivered a fantastic ball to Mauk.  But the former Melbourne City midfielder made a meal of his wide-open shot from close range, blazing it way too high.

THE FINAL WORD

The re-jigged Reds twice saw their lead hauled in by the plucky Blues, before nervously clinging on to their undefeated stretch, now 10 on the trot.

The cluttered schedule continues when Adelaide take on Chinese outfit Shandong Luneng this Tuesday in AFC Champions League playoff action before travelling to Gosford to tackle the Central Coast Mariners next Sunday.

After getting the better of Friday's deadlock, Sydney will be buoyant when they host Perth Glory at Allianz Stadium next Saturday.

TEAMS

Adelaide United: Galekovic (c), Marrone, La Rocca (Elsey 44'), McGowan, Mauk, Sanchez, Isaias, Cirio (Carrusca 64'), Mells, Elrich, Kamau (Djite 79')
Sydney FC: Janjetovic, Ryall (c), Jurman, Dimitrijevic, Ninkovic, Naumoff (Carney 69'), Simon (Smeltz 85'), Faty, Holosko, Grant, Tavares
Scorers: Cirio (2', 45'), Simon (37'), Holosko (45'+3)
Red cards : Nil
Yellow cards: Simon (34'), Elrich (39'), Elsey (61'), Sanchez (73'), Tavares (90'+3)
Conditions: 26°C, sunny
Attendance: 11,785

Hyundai A-League 2017/18
# Club P W D L PTS
Sydney FC 27 20 4 3 64
Newcastle Jets 27 15 5 7 50
Melbourne City FC 27 13 4 10 43
Melbourne Victory 27 12 5 10 41
Adelaide United 27 11 6 10 39
Brisbane Roar FC 27 10 5 12 35
Western Sydney Wanderers FC 27 8 9 10 33
Perth Glory 27 10 2 15 32
Wellington Phoenix 27 5 6 16 21
Central Coast Mariners 27 4 8 15 20
# Club P W D L PTS
Brisbane Roar FC Women 12 9 1 2 28
Sydney FC Women 12 8 1 3 25
Newcastle Jets Women 12 6 2 4 20
Melbourne City FC Women 12 6 2 4 20
Canberra United Women 12 5 1 6 16
Perth Glory Women 12 4 2 6 14
Melbourne Victory Women 12 3 2 7 11
Western Sydney Wanderers Women 12 3 2 7 11
Adelaide United Women 12 3 1 8 10
Group A
# Club P W D L PTS
Melbourne City FC Youth 8 5 1 2 16
Melbourne Victory Youth 8 4 1 3 13
Adelaide United Youth 8 3 2 3 11
Perth Glory Youth 8 3 1 4 10
Brisbane Roar FC Youth 8 2 1 5 7
# Club P W D L PTS
Western Sydney Wanderers FC Youth 8 6 0 2 18
Sydney FC Youth 8 5 2 1 17
Newcastle Jets Youth 8 3 3 2 12
Central Coast Mariners Youth 8 2 1 5 7
Canberra United Youth 8 1 0 7 3