Despite an early lead, Adelaide United fell to West Adelaide, 1-2 in Round 17 of the PlayStation 4 National Premier League at Adelaide Shores Football Centre on Saturday.
Blake Carpenter put the Young Reds on the front foot within three minutes, catching West Adelaide off-guard and held the lead for the first 45 minutes.
However, West Adelaide came out strong in the second half, as Tom Briscoe scored the equaliser.
A late winner from West Adelaide captain, Eli Vlassis, secured the three points for the home side, stealing the vital win from the Reds.
Adelaide United were fired up for their clash with the Blue and Whites, gaining ascendency early.
Reds’ captain, Josh Mori delivered a beautifully-weighted cross into the penalty area, where Carpenter caught a deflection to slot into the back of the net past a helpless Lewis Moss for the lead in the 3rd minute.
But West Adelaide’s Michael Alexandrou was a threat to United throughout the match, making forward runs and passes, as well as Briscoe, Mitris and Vlassis muscling with danger.
An exquisite pass by Alexandrou found Mitris in the 18-yard-box, but Adelaide were able to clear the danger.
Briscoe almost ignited his equaliser earlier, but his free-kick swung just right of the post.
Hamish McCabe looked to make his mark on the game, with an effort to assist an unmarked Carpenter, whose shot was denied a double advantage.
Mori sped past defenders to send a shot towards goal, but it scraped the upright in a close call.
Mitris then answered back with his attempt, just missing the mark on the 40th minute.
After a close first half, Briscoe was determined to get his side back into the game, and with a stunning strike, curled the ball past Reds’ ‘keeper, Isaac Richards, in the 53rd minute.
Three minutes after, Mitris sent his free kick over United’s defence to find Briscoe, who couldn’t get enough power on his volley as Richards was able to save.
In the 79th minute it was Carpenter who stood up to the set-piece calling, with the hopes of striking home the winning goal, but it was sent over the crossbar.
And shortly after, Vlassis had headed in the winner, as Carpenter could not find another goal in the 89th minute to salvage some points.
In Round 18, Adelaide United will travel to Marden Sports Complex to face Adelaide Blue Eagles, where a win is absolutely crucial in order to keep safe from the relegation zone.
Adelaide United 3
West Adelaide 0