Adelaide United has destroyed Melbourne City 4-1 in the final domestic match of the 2014/15 season in what was a blank clash.
Three first half goals coming from Miguel Palanca, Pablo Sanchez, and Tarek Elrich was topped off by a Cameron Watson penalty in the second half to see the Reds cruise to victory in front of 8,773 fans at Coopers Stadium.
The match began at a relatively tame pace, but United were the team to settle the faster of the two – spreading the ball wide to utilise the speed of Craig Goodwin and Bruce Kamau on the flanks.
Within the opening 15 minutes, the Reds had already earned themselves five corners, yet they were unable to make any of them count. Nevertheless, Melbourne City goalkeeper, Tando Velaphi, was looking anything but confident as each ball was whipped into the box.
And United’s dominance soon paid off, as Miguel Palanca and Pablo Sanchez both scored within four minutes of each other and put the Reds 2-0 up after just 23 minutes.
Palanca’s opener came through some outstanding football by Pablo Sanchez, who worked his way through the City defence and slotted his fellow Spaniard through. Palanca, still with plenty of work to do, let the ball come across his body and smacked a sweet left footed strike into the far post of the goal.
Then, in seemingly no time at all, Pablo Sanchez got on the score sheet when he expertly rifled past Velaphi after the gloveman initially saved a stinging Cirio shot.
From here, it was purely one-way traffic for the remainder of the first half – Tarek Elrich topping off an outstanding opening stanza with a contender for goal of the season. Elrich picked up the ball from well within his own half and set off on an ambitious, yet ultimately fruitful run. Eventually dancing past four City defenders, the no. 21 cut the ball back onto his right foot and finished emphatically.
Despite the three goal opening to the match, the second half was even more dramatic than the first.
In the 59th minute, Cameron Watson scored his first ever Hyundai A-League goal when he neatly dispatched a penalty that was won by Goodwin a couple of minutes earlier. Then, another penalty was converted – this time by City’s Aaron Mooy – which made it 4-1.
Yet the spectacle wasn’t over with, as Kew Jaliens was given his marching orders for bringing down Goodwin as the last man in City’s defence. Four minutes later, Michael Marrone was also sent from the field – causing both teams to end the match with ten men.
Following the match, coach of the Red’s, Josep Gombau, proclaimed his happiness with the performance of his team, saying it is the best result ahead of the start of the finals next week.
“I’m happy, (not just with the first half) but with all of the game,” Gombau said. “I think that we did well and in the end it’s a good feeling for next week in the finals.
“Next week is the start of a new competition. If you win you can keep working, if you lose you’re out.
“We need to be focussed. Today we can enjoy it, but come tomorrow we need to be thinking of next (week). None of it counts for next week, now we start from zero.
“When the team performs this well, it’s difficult for the coach. It was a good (match) for the team and now we keep going and, now more than ever, take it game-by-game.”
Saturday, 25 April 2015
Hyundai A-League Round 27
Adelaide United 4 (Palanca 19’, Pablo Sanchez 23’, Elrich 33’, Watson 59’)
Melbourne City 1 (Mooy 65’)