A first-half brace from Sergio Cirio wasn’t enough for Adelaide United to claim all three points at Coopers Stadium, however the Reds remain undefeated, now in ten matches.
With a scintillating last fixture between the two sides, a fiery and close battle was expected this time around as well. The Coopers Stadium faithful were not left disappointed, a four-goal thriller treating the 11,785 supporters who came to see one of the oldest rivalries in the Hyundai A-League play-out.
And within two minutes, the Reds had taken the lead through Cirio, who bundled home a deft, whipped cross from Stefan Mauk. Mauk’s ball teasing Sebastian Ryall into making a clearance, but Cirio met Ryall’s effort and finished past Vedran Janjetovic.
United continued with the pressure and intensity that brought about their opening goal throughout the first 45, Isaias rattling the crossbar with a brilliant free-kick from 30 yards.
But United weren’t able to hold onto their initial lead, Simon getting away from Dylan McGowan in the middle of the box to glance a header into the far post, the ball cushioning itself into the side netting.
What appeared to be the last chance of the opening half saw the Reds regain the lead, when Cirio finished off a fantastic Bruce Kamau run through the box. Beating three defenders, Kamau played Cirio who again finished passed Janjetovic.
Yet Sydney clawed their way back for the second time in the half when Filip Holosko escaped Jordan Elsey, who was introduced due to an injury to Italian defender, Iacopo La Rocca. Holosko managing to loop a slight touch passed United Captain, Eugene Galekovic.
The start of the second half started as furiously as the first, except it was the Sky Blues the side to press higher and raise the intensity.
However, the introduction of Marcelo Carrusca just after the hour mark almost proved instantly game changing, with the Argentine providing a beautiful cross for Mauk. The starting-debutant controlled the ball perfectly, but his finish was mishit and flashed over the bar.
But the match was destined to end even, despite both sides having quality chances to steal all three points.
Following the match, United Head Coach, Guillermo Amor, said the result was not what his team wanted, but he was happy with their performance overall.
“We have gotten one point, but we always prefer to win,” Amor said. “After the game and after we analyse the game and do a few different things, we can say it’s not a bad result.
“Sydney are a very good team and they play very well. They’re strong and the game was difficult.
“What is important is to see how the players are (feeling) physically in this moment. Today, the players played well and for me the level (of our football) was good.
“The only bad news from the game is Iacopo (La Rocca) who is in a bad situation now. We will see how he is tomorrow and he will have a check with the doctor.
“For me, the team was good today and we were only thinking about this game.
“We are still in a fantastic moment. Everyone in the group is positive and the entire team is strong.
“Our team has such a good attitude and always give 100 pre cent that it is difficult to ask them for more.”